Bargain Hunt

Bargain Hunt

:"Not to be confused with the American game show Bargain Hunters".Infobox Television
show_name = Bargain Hunt

caption = "Bargain Hunt" logo
format = Game Show
picture_format = 16:9
runtime = 30/45/60 minutes
creator =
starring = David Dickinson (2000 - 2003) (daytime) (2002 - 2004) (primetime) Tim Wonnacott (2003 - present) (daytime)
channel = BBC One
first_aired = 13 March, 2000 - present (daytime)
last_aired = 22 August, 2002 - 13 November, 2004 (primetime)
num_series =
num_episodes =
country = UK
producer =
related =
imdb_id = 0283172

"Bargain Hunt" is a daytime television programme on BBC One that aired since 13 March, 2000 on the daytime version and from 22 August, 2002 to 13 November, 2004 in the primetime version.


"Bargain Hunt" has undergone various minor tweaks to its format since it premiered in 2000 and was hosted by David Dickinson. Most episodes are 45 minutes in length, though 30-minute versions and 1-hour "live" editions have also been produced. The rules have been changed many times through the show's run. Occasionally, the show features phone-in competitions for home viewers.

Two teams -- designated the "Reds" and the "Blues" -- compete. Each team has two members, who wear matching T-shirts and/or fleeces that correspond to their team's color. Most episodes have civilian contestants, though some shows feature teams of celebrity players instead. At the beginning of the show, each team is given a set amount of money with which to purchase antiques. The objective is to find items that will earn the team a profit when later sold at auction. Each team is accompanied by an antiques trade expert, though it is the contestants' decision whether to heed the advice given by their expert. As each item is sold at auction, the host compares the auction sale price to the price originally paid by the team, with the difference being either subtracted from or added to the team's total. If the final total reflects a profit, the team receives that profit in cash; otherwise, the team receives nothing.

In the early David Dickinson-era episodes, teams were given £200 each, and could buy as many or as few items as they liked within the hour given to wander around a trade fair. The item rule was later changed so that teams had to buy up to three items, and later revised again to a three-item limit. After Tim Wonnacott became host, the money was increased to £300, and a new feature called the "swap" item" was introduced. Each expert chose an item of their own, and the team could replace one of their own choices with the "swap item" if they wished to. The host, when offering the option to a team, would often ask, "Swap or No Swap?" Originally, the experts were given an unspecified amount of money for choosing the extra item; the rule was later changed so that the experts could only use whatever money was left of the team's £300 budget (the remaining money was referred to by Wonnacott as the "leftover lolly"). Under the revised rule, if a team used its entire budget, the expert could not choose a "swap item."

The "swap" rule was changed again in 2007, becoming the "bonus item." The expert is still given any "leftover lolly" to buy an extra item, which is entered into the auction. Teams may decide (until just after the auction of their own items but before that of the extra item) whether the auction results of the fourth item should be added to their own auction lots. Teams can potentially add to their profit with the "bonus item," but it can also subtract from a team's earnings.

At one point, teams earning a profit on all three items were awarded a wooden "golden gavel" trophy, though as of 2007, the practice appears to have been discontinued. Hardly any were awarded anyhow; most teams lost a substantial amount of money. The teams are paying retail price at fairs -- most items such as silver and ceramics have an existing "book price" and make about the same amount of money at auction all day long -- so even if teams get a small discount from the seller, they are still only "on the money" with most items and have little room for profit at auction. An item's auction price generally is less than retail price, so the odds are against the contestants from the beginning.


Originally a daytime show when launched in 2000, it became staple viewing of students and gave host David Dickinson cult status.

A primetime version, hosted by Dickinson, was also made (2002-2004), which was similar to the daytime show except that the teams' budget was increased to £500. It was on this version of the show that the record was set for the greatest profit earned on "Bargain Hunt". A team led by Michael Hogben purchased a Royal Worcester box at Ardingly Fair for £140; the item made £800 in the live primetime auction.

When Dickinson gave up the daytime show to concentrate on the primetime version, his place was taken by Tim Wonnacott, an antiques expert already well-known to UK viewers as a long-standing expert on "The Antiques Roadshow".

In April 2005 it was announced that the primetime version of "Bargain Hunt" had been axed; however the daytime version is to continue. Reruns of the daytime version (from the Dickinson era) also appear on BBC Entertainment and BBC America.

The show occasionally features well-known contestants, such as "'Allo 'Allo!" stars Gorden Kaye and Sue Hodge.

The show also airs on the Australian Nine Network at 5:00 p.m. weekdays and on the Foxtel cable television channel, Lifestyle.

500th Show

On 15 October 2007, the 500th show was broadcast. This show differed from a normal show in that both teams were made up of experts -- the red team featured David Barby and Philip Serrell (described as the "old" team), while the blue team featured Kate Bliss and Charles Hanson (deemed the "young" team); the "bonus items" were purchased by Tim Wonnacott himself. The teams were given £500 to spend, rather than the usual £300, with any profits going to charities chosen by the team members. The red team made a profit of £245, beating the blue team's break-even.

The show also featured outtakes and memorable clips from previous shows. [cite episode|title=500th Episode|series=Bargain Hunt|airdate=2007-10-15]

The Experts

*David Barby - Fellow of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors, Fine Arts Division - auctioneer before starting own valuation business.
*Kate Bliss (née Alcock) - consultant for Philip Serrell Auctioneers and Valuers in Herefordshire and Worcestershire
*James Braxton - owns Edgar Horns Auctioneers in Eastbourne and is executive director of Bracketts Fine Art Auctioneers in Royal Tunbridge Wells
*Pippa Deeley - sometimes credited as Philippa Deeley. Member of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors, Fine Arts Division (MRICS); Fellow and Diamond member of the Gemmological Association of Great Britain (FGA) (DGA). General valuer, specialising in jewellery. Has worked in various different provincial salerooms across the country. Now lives in East Sussex and runs her own fine-art and antiques valuation and consultancy company, Philippa H Deeley Ltd.
*Charles Hanson - former Christie's expert who runs his own auction house in Derbyshire
*Paul Hayes - operates as a trade dealer, traveling around the country buying items from the public and selling them to his contacts within the antiques trade. He also has a stall at the Sunday market at Charnock Richard near Preston
*Anita Manning - in 1989 she established Great Western Auctions in Glasgow and became Scotland’s first woman auctioneer
*Adam Partridge - principal auctioneer and valuer at Marshalls Auctioneers of Knutsford, Cheshire were he has worked since 1999
*Thomas Plant - work at Phillips in Bath, and is now an independent valuer and auctioneer at a sale room in Kent
* Philip Serrell - owns Philip Serrell Auctioneers and Valuers in Herefordshire and Worcestershire
*Nigel Smith - trained as a restorer of fine European and oriental ceramics, before starting work as a porter and cataloguer in Manchester, and then moved to Sotheby's as a trainee auctioneer, and then to Phillip's auctioneers in Bath. He now works at Tennant's in Harrogate
*Mark Stacey - senior valuer with Dreweatt Neate Fine Art Auctioneers in Godalming, Surrey
*Catherine Southon - Head of Scientific Instruments at Sotheby's, previously trained in Maritime Art
*Elizabeth Talbot - in 1995 she married and moved to East Anglia to take up the position of Senior Auctioneer and Valuer at the Diss Auction Rooms of Thos Wm Gaze & Son. She was made the firm's first female partner in 2000
*Colin Young - a qualified chartered arts and antiques surveyor, he joined the Grantham firm, Golding Young in 1989 and has been principal since 1994

Past Experts

*Dean Goodwin (2000)
*Michael Hogben
*Kevin Jackson (2000-5)
*Toby Moy (2000)
*Sally Stratton (2001-2)
*Louise Weir (2000)


External links

*|id=antiques/tv_and_radio/bargainhunt_index.shtml|title="Bargain Hunt"
* [ "Bargain Hunt"] at

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