Kidderminster auctioneer's Viking bracelet find is TV gem
A rare Viking silver bracelet has fallen into the hands of an auction dealer in Kidderminster – and features in a new Sky history television show.
Craig Leonard, who runs Wyre Forest Auctions and owns Vintage Mummy antiques shop in the town, came across the rare eighth century bracelet thanks to a notable friend in the auction world.
The 52-year-old, who is also an actor as well as an auctioneer, stars on the Sky History show Lost Relics of the Knights Templar, and took on the bracelet as part of the programme.
He said: "I got the bracelet from a friend called Hamilton White who's a TV presenter and works on the same programme I do, Lost Relics of the Knights Templar.
"It's rare, anything Viking silver is rare. If it went up for auction it could fetch between £1,500 and £2,000.
"I'm not sure where it came from but it's British or Scandinavian.
"So the whole programme is all about antiquities. This one features relics of the Knights Templar. It's a project I've been working on for the last five years.
"When you're an auctioneer anything man made has the potential to come through the door, whether it be coins, an axe, pottery. People find items in their houses all the time.
"Everyone has some treasure in their house. That's the exciting part of being auctioneer. You just don't know."
A lot of the programme was filed in Wolverley, near Craig's home.
Between acting, he runs his antiques shop in Kidderminster and also managers Wyre Forest Auctions, which is still closed down due to Covid.
He hopes it will be back up and running mid-August.
Craig added: "Antiques, to me, are recycling. Everything has a purpose. You are the guardian of an item for such a short time. If you don't look after it, it won't last.
"I'll use this bracelet now for talks and shows. They tell stories.
"Vikings weren't seen in best light but now on TV they come across as heroic.
"It's a really exciting find."
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