Antiques & History Expert
Official Agent: Jo Carlton
James Rylands' formidable knowledge of antiques, social history and contemporary culture have led him to corner the market in his field, appearing regularly as an expert presenter on a number of programmes including Cash In The Attic, Cash In The Celebrity Attic, Sun Sea & Bargain Spotting and Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is for BBC1; Feather Your Nest with Linda Robson; Car Booty; three series of BBC's The Great Antiques Hunt with Jilly Goulden; Going for a Song with Michael Parkinson and Anne Robinson; the Antiques Show and the Antiques Roadshow. James has most recently appeared as a guest on ITV's A Right Royal Quiz, Britain's first ever panel show about the Royal Family and a celebratory and affectionate look at the Royals and the country's obsession with them.
James joined Sotheby's as a graduate cataloguer in 1979. In 1986 he was responsible for setting up the Garden Statuary department in Sotheby's Sussex and has been involved with them ever since, both as a Director of Sotheby's and subsequently as a Consultant. James qualified as a member of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors and has co-written a book on garden ornaments for Thames and Hudson. He has now set up his own auction house, Summers Place Auctions, dealing in garden statuary and fossil decoration. He has also appeared at BBC Gardeners' World Live, hosting the unique Cash In Your Garden theatre session.
With a keen interest in history, James has also written and presented a pilot programme on Robert Adam's architectural masterpiece Syon Park, as part of the Historic Houses of Great Britain project. He is also an experienced chartered surveyor and a connoisseur of fine wines.
James has appeared on Ready Steady Cook with Sun Sea & Bargain Spotting co-host Angela Rippon. Other appearances include Good Driver for the BBC with Nick Ross and Executive Lifestyles for Channel 4.
James is a seasoned traveller and scuba diver and recently assisted Greg Stone with underwater filming on historic wrecks in Bermuda for National Geographic. Much in demand as a charity auctioneer, James has travelled as far afield as Canada and Bermuda to raise money for worthy causes.
In November 2013 a giant skeleton of a dinosaur which last roamed Earth more than 150 million years ago fetched £400,000 at auction. The 55ft (17m) specimen of the long-necked Diplodocus longus went under James' hammer at Summers Place Auctions. The sale of the female skeleton, 19ft (6m) tall and nicknamed “Misty”, was the first UK auction of a large dinosaur skeleton, according to experts.
- A Right Royal Quiz - ITV
- Cash In The Celebrity Attic - BBC2
- Cash In The Attic - BBC1
- Sun Sea & Bargain Spotting - BBC1
- Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is - BBC1
- Car Booty - BBC1
- Feather Your Nest - BBC2
- Ready Steady Cook - BBC2
- Antiques Roadshow - BBC1
- Antiques Show - BBC1
- Executive Lifestyles - Channel 4
- Going For A Song - BBC1
- Good Driver - BBC1
- National Geographic
- The Great Antiques Hunt - BBC1