AN Antiques Roadshow guest was shaken after he learned the life-changing truth behind a painting passed down from his grandad.
A recent episode of the BBC show was filmed at Belmont House in Kent and saw expert Rupert Mass meet a man who had brought in a painting that had caught his attention.
Rupert very quickly pointed out the David Hockney signature on the bottom of the painting, but said it wasn't like any other works he had seen from the acclaimed artist so wasn't sure of its authenticity.
Rupert then asked the man to explain how it came to be in his possession, and he said it had belonged to his grandfather, who had working at the "tiny station" of Trimley St Mary in 1957 when he saw two young artists on the platform.
He said: "He noticed their equipment so he invited them into the signal box to have a cup of tea.
"He eventually invited them home for Sunday lunch because they were living in straitened circumstances.
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"He said 'oh, bring a painting' and [grandfather] Wallace bought a painting from each of them.
"A year later, he brandished a piece of paper showing one of these guys [Hockney] had won the gold medal from the Royal College of Art. It's a Hockney, that's my case."
The expert admitted he had been "initially incredulous" but some research had revealed that Hockney had been in that area at the time the man's grandfather had said, alongside fellow artist John Loker.
He added how it was his job to "question everything, and in this case, I was aware if someone was going to fake a Hockney, it wouldn't look like that."
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He also said: This is not at all what I am used to seeing by David Hockney," before describing it as "very rough and ready", with a "wobbly signature".
But he also said it was the "most extraordinary story" and then asked the guest how much he thought it was worth.
When the man replied £10,000, Rupert told him: "I think you might be right, but it's closer to £20,000 to £30,000."
The guest was stunned and repeated what he had been told before trailing off with "£20,000 to £30,000!" and ducking behind the painting.
Once he had composed himself, he said: "Thank you for that information. Thank you very much."
Antiques Roadshow is available on BBC iPlayer.
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