Whilst the enduring popularity of programmes such as “The Antiques Roadshow” and it’s peers cannot be denied, their effect upon the Antiques Trade, as viewed by many of those who depend upon that sometimes erratic occupation for their livelihood, is however often the subject of rather more mixed emotions, occasionally leading to some series being regarded with somewhat of a jaundiced eye.
The Roadshow itself, launched some forty years ago, has deservedly become a launchpad to national recognition for many of it’s participating experts, who, for the most part, are drawn from the ranks of the country’s leading Auctioneers, and their experience, expertise and scholarship is generally viewed in a positive light.
The same however cannot always be said of some of the other series which it’s success, and the at one time burgeoning fashion for antiques has spawned. One show in particular, “Antiques Road Trip”, whilst often highly entertaining, is more often than not spoken of in terms of derision by the denizens of “the Trade” for the wholly unreal manner in which it’s “negotiations” are staged, as often as not verging upon the ridiculous. Whilst we all of us understand that there is no such thing as “the right price” for the objects in which we deal, and are for the most part willing to accept that negotiation is an accepted part of the game, the nonsensical terms upon which deals are struck in this programme serve only to caricature the Dealers concerned either as fools or charlatans, which can hardly be claimed to be in the interest of an area of business often already regarded by the world at large as having a less than desirable public image.