How TV Antiques Expert David Has Got Us All out on a Bargain Hunt; BOBBY-DAZZLER: Antiques Expert David Dickinson

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Byline: kurt bayer

THEY were once seen as confusing places where the unwary couldaccidentally bid for an antique vase or a grand piano by simply scratchingtheir nose.

But now Scotlands auction houses are enjoying an unprecedented boomafter being demystified by a raft of popular TV programmes.

Shows such as Flog It! and Bargain Hunt feature members of the public buyingand selling items at auction under the watchful eye of such experts as DavidDickinson.

Now the sale-room boom has even been named the Dickinson Effect, in honour ofthe flamboyant, perma-tanned presenter.

Auctioneer Steven Dewar, of Dundee firm Curr & Dewar, said record numbers ofnew buyers and sellers were now coming through the doors.

He added: A lot of people were a bit wary of auctions in the past, scared ofscratching their nose and ending up buying something they didnt want.

And a lot of peoples idea of an auction in the past was seeing some paintingbeing sold at Christies for [pounds sterling]25 million. But now you have David Dickinson on TVtelling people not to be scared and telling them the way to do things. It hasbroken down a lot of barriers.

Mr Dewar, 37, said a sale at his auction house in August 2004, attracted 74successful buyers from just 37 different vendors. …