My grandad passed down a grotesque ornament to me – but I had the last laugh when I found out its true value | The Sun

AN Antiques Roadshow guest was left stunned after he was told the shocking valuation of the 'grotesque' pelican statue he inherited.

The 'rare' and 'characterful' item was estimated to sell 'above the £1,200 bracket' at auction.

Fiona Bruce hosted Thursday's episode of the BBC's Antiques Roadshow in Swanage Pier, Dorset, and expert Serhat Ahmet was presented with a unique item that left him very impressed. 

During the episode, expert Serhat examined a rather unusual item a guest brought in for valuation. 

The man explained that he had inherited the item from his grandfather, a 'young accountant, who went to see one of his clients, a doctor called Alfie Hammond'.

While there, he noticed the pelican statue in the waiting room and asked if he could have it when his client died, which he agreed to.

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Serhat admitted: "These are rare, they don't just turn up every day. The colour of it, this terracotta colour, is just wonderful."

He explained that the piece had originated from a Doulton Lambeth factory.

The expert continued: "So, Doulton, a wonderfully famous factory started in the 19th century, originally making pipes and toilets and things like that. 

But in the late 19th century, they turned to making art pottery, things that were simply made to please the eye and this particular piece is an architectural piece."

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Serhat also revealed that the item could potentially be 'described as a garden ornament' and that the 'characterful' item was 'a sculptural beauty'.

The antiques expert then described the style of the unique item: "For me, I just see it very much as a gargoyle type of object. It's got that real grotesque look about it.

"So if we think about the 1890s, it was all about the grotesque, the kind of revival of the Gothic and the Martin Brothers who were in Southall were making these wonderfully characterful items, birds with heads that came off and spoon warmers that looked like monsters from the sea."

Serhat asked the man how much he would pay for the particular item, to which the man replied: "Well, I'd give you £100."

The expert then revealed to the guest: "I would not be surprised if this went way above the £1,200 bracket."

The owner was left astonished but delighted to discover that it could fetch a price twelve times that amount.

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