Sunday, February 25, 2018

Private Eye, snobbery and The Antiques Roadshow

There is a silly little item in the current Private Eye.

It begins:
Hard times at the BBC, where it appears even the treasured Antiques Roadshow must make cutbacks. 
The roster for the forthcoming series has been announced and settings will include the spectacular Crathes Castles (sic) in Aberdeenshire, Buckfast Abbey in Devon, Eltham Palace in Greenwich and, er, Media City in Salford.
It's years since I made a point of watching the show, but what made Antiques Roadshow interesting was precisely that ordinary people could turn up with extraordinary and valuable objects.

And in its early days at least, the programme often came from pretty mundane locations - Market Harborough Leisure Centre, for instance.

In fact it was Roadshow's later obsession with historic houses that put me off it. The inserts in which the presenter fawned over Lord and Lady Muck and their treasures were usually a bore.

Behind this item, I fear, lies Private Eye's original sin of snobbery. How, they ask, could people in somewhere like Salford possibly have anything of interest to show us?


crewegwyn said...

Hear, hear!

David Evans said...

Somehow, I don't thing snobbery came into the article. Out of nine venues in 2018 - five castles or stately homes, Halifax Piece Hall in Halifax, Cromer Pier, a huge aircraft hanger on the edge of Bristol, and a place where all the BBC Types can get together with their unfortunate long exiled cousins Oop North is the message I get from it. Certainly not a single Market Harborough Leisure Centre, for instance.