The production of the BBC’s antiques game show Bargain Hunt has out to tender for a two-year contract. Image Courtesy of BBC.

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Pitches to produce the show will need to submit ideas that help promote diversity, appeal to younger audiences and ensure that auctions and fairs featured are located “across the whole of the UK”.

Bargain Hunt has helped to build the careers of auctioneers such as Christina Trevanion (Trevanion & Dean), Thomas Plant (Special Auction Services) and Charles Hanson (Hansons).

New potential talent

The tender document calls for proposals for a series to air in 2019 featuring “the current presenting talent”, but asks production firms to also identify “new potential talent”.

Auctioneer presenters have told ATG they earn some £1000 for a weekend of filming but that the show’s publicity helps to generate consignments for their auction houses.

The show’s format of ‘competitive antiques hunting’, where two teams vie to buy antiques at fairs on a budget of £300 and sell them for the most profit at auction, will remain the same.

The format was criticised in an ATG round table discussion (ATG No 2266) for “lacking any academic integrity and failing to promote antiques’ green credentials to younger audiences”.

In November 2017 an internal BBC review of its tendering process recommended retiring more shows “to free up slots for new ideas”.

However, the BBC tender document described Bargain Hunt as having a “large, loyal audience” and said it is “one of the premier antiques brands on British television and a pillar of the [daytime] schedule”.

The BBC was asked for a comment but had not responded by the time ATG went to press.