Celebrities visit St Albans vintage store for BBC filming
06:30 18 June 2014
A former Doctor Who actor has gone from the TARDIS to a treasure trove at a large vintage store in St Albans, where he rummaged for a profitable antique.
Bernard Cribbins, who starred alongside David Tennant in the tenth Doctor’s finale, joined entertainer Barry Cryer to film the BBC’s Celebrity Antiques Road Trip.
The stars recently spent hours at the Fleetville Vintage Emporium – otherwise known as “vintage heaven” – as they mingled with customers and sellers.
The shop on Hatfield Road has gained popularity with television producers, with the emporium’s manager Georg Constantinou saying: “It’s the sixth visit from the Celebrity Antiques Road Trip.”
She added: “They love it here – they keep coming back. But this time around they brought both teams in. Normally they bring one in, and the other team goes to another antique centre.
“The celebrities choose items and then take them to auction, as it is a competition to see which item sells for the highest price.”
Georg said she felt very comfortable mixing with Barry, who has written for many top comedians including Morecambe and Wise and Bob Hope, and BAFTA nominee Bernard, also known as the voice of The Wombles.
She added: “It was a barrel of laughs when they were filming here, and there is no awkwardness. The crew like the relaxed atmosphere, which is why they keep coming back.
“Barry and Bernard were going around saying ‘wow, wow, wow’ most of the time. They looked at everything from antiques to art deco collections, paintings and 1930s furniture.”
Over 100 individual entrepreneurs sell various items at three buildings on the site.
While a loyal Georg refused to divulge what the stars bought, she said that viewers would get a “surprise” when they watched the show in the autumn.
She was impressed with Bernard’s and Barry’s “wealth of knowledge as they recognised different eras and knew the value of items”.
Georg added: “Customers continued shopping while they were here, and they were very quiet during the filming. But they did get autographs and photos afterwards.”
The emporium, which counts singer Kim Wilde as a regular visitor, is also a firm favourite for supplying props for television and theatre.
A red 1950s kitchen from the store has featured in BBC drama Call the Midwife.