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Hidden Treasures and Restoration Magic on BBC One’s The Travelling Auctioneers: Interview with the Presenting Team

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The Travelling Auctioneers

BBC One’s daytime hit The Travelling Auctioneers has returned to screen this week, and this time with an exciting new presenting line-up for 2024. The original Travelling Auctioneer, Christina Trevanion, will be joined by a new team consisting of JJ Chalmers, Robin Johnson, and Izzie Balmer. Together, they will hit the road in the little blue auction van, travelling across the UK to uncover hidden treasures and turn unwanted items into winning lots.

Before his gold medal win at the Invictus Games and his appearance on Strictly Come Dancing, JJ Chalmers was a craft, design, and technology teacher. His broad range of DIY and restoration skills will undoubtedly come in handy as part of the Travelling Auctioneers team. Joining him is Robin Johnson, star of Quest’s The Woodland Workshop, who also brings his expertise in restoration as a former design and technology teacher. Lastly, Izzie Balmer, one of the UK’s most popular auctioneering experts, adds her insights and leads a specialist jewellery and silver department in a busy West County auction house.

The new series, consisting of 20 episodes, will see Christina, JJ, Robin, and Izzie split off into pairs as they make their way across the country. Their mission is to identify items with the biggest selling appeal, and Christina and Izzie will call on their auctioneer contacts and expertise, while JJ and Robin bring new life to neglected treasures through their craft and restoration skills. Each episode culminates in a thrilling on-site auction.

In a new interview, Christina, JJ, Robin, and Izzie revealed all about their experience working on the show.

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When asked what convinced him to sign up for the series, Robin Johnson replied, “How could I turn it down? Driving around the UK with experts like Christina and Izzie, fixing lost treasures in people’s driveways… what a great way to spend a summer!”

Izzie Balmer expressed her privilege in being entrusted with beloved possessions and helping find new homes for them. She also mentioned her fascination with the repair and restoration work of Robin and JJ, saying, “I wouldn’t have a clue where to start, and yet they turned tired and broken objects into beautiful, useable items, giving them a new lease of life.”

JJ Chalmers, reflecting on his unexpected journey from Helmand to the Invictus Games to his career as a TV presenter, mentioned that he’s happiest in his workshop and was thrilled to head out on the road with The Travelling Auctioneers. He added, “After all, I know more than most about second chances!”

Christina Trevanion, having returned for a second series of The Travelling Auctioneers, explained that the format of the show aligns perfectly with her role as an auctioneer. She loves the surprise element of discovering unique items in people’s homes, saying, “It feels a bit like Christmas every day!”

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When asked to describe the show in three words, Christina called it “fun, educational, and inspiring,” while Izzie added, “heartfelt, positive, and engaging!”

As each member of the team had their unique reasons for joining the show, they all shared stories that resonated with them. For Christina, it was a family in episode five who had experienced a tough couple of years. She found the experience emotional and felt honoured to help them. JJ mentioned Terry, an army veteran, in episode two, who had lived through the early nuclear bomb test and lived with the consequences. He described Terry as an absolute gentleman and a real character.

Sustainability is a key focus of The Travelling Auctioneers, and the team plays a significant role in bringing new life to neglected treasures. Robin expressed his views on sustainability, saying, “In the not-so-distant past, things were really built to last, and with just a little TLC, they can keep going.” He emphasized the importance of giving these items a second chance rather than contributing to landfill waste.

When asked about celebrity homes they’d love to trawl for hidden gems, Christina mentioned Elizabeth Taylor’s jewelry collection, while JJ suggested Leigh Francis because of his love for quirky, collectible things. They both acknowledged that every home has its own hidden treasures waiting to be discovered, regardless of celebrity status.

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As for funny behind-the-scenes stories, Robin shared that Christina revealed she’s on first-name terms with the Duke of Marlborough after attending a party at Blenheim Palace. And despite returning the van clean and organised, JJ was the guilty party for leaving it in a disheveled state.

With their expertise, passion, and commitment to sustainability, Christina, JJ, Robin, and Izzie are sure to make The Travelling Auctioneers an entertaining and educational watch. Tune in weekdays at 4.30pm on BBC One or catch up on all episodes on iPlayer.

Image Credit: BBC / L-R: Robin Johnson, Christina Trevanion, JJ Chalmers and Izzie Balmer

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Mia Silva is a talented British entertainment reporter whose passion for storytelling and diverse background (half Mexican, half English) adds a unique perspective to her coverage. With a keen eye for detail, she brings the latest news and interviews to our avid readers.

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