Lawrence prize is star of Roadshow

The filming of Antiques Roadshow at Newstead Abbey
The filming of Antiques Roadshow at Newstead Abbey

The Antiques Roadshow rolled into Newstead Abbey, the home of romantic poet Lord Byron — but it was Eastwood-born author DH Lawrence who was in the spotlight.

For when the second instalment of footage from the abbey filming aired on BBC1 last weekend, it was a book that was presented to Lawrence when he was a youngster that fuelled intrigue.

Lawrence was presented with the book as a prize for coming top in a literary contest.

He collected it in 1900 — at the age of 14 — during the Easter term at Nottingham High School.

Lawrence didn’t sign the book but it is referenced in the school’s annals.

It was taken to the long-running roadshow — presented by Fiona Bruce — by the High School’s history teacher Dr Clark Colman. It was a rare excursion for the item.

Expert Rupert Powell dubbed it a ‘prize finding’.

He told the audience: ““It is a unique item, there’s not another one like it and spiritually it’s in the right home at Nottingham High School, and that’s a great place to remain.

“But from a commercial point of view if ever something like this came on to the market I can easily see a collector paying high hundreds or maybe a thousand pounds to have it in their collection.

“It is a unique and wonderful item.”

It is a long-standing traditional at the High School that the literary prize winner chooses a book as a reward and it is bound for them.

Lawrence selected Fights for the Flag by WH Fitchett, which details British military history.