Antiques Roadshow: 'Gobstopper' £200k value shocks fans - pearl antique explored!

Antiques Roadshow is known for valuing unique items, such as a large pearl during the last episode. So, what is the ‘gobstopper’?

The BBC series has been a popular hit for years, especially for viewers who are interested in seeing collectors turn a long-lived item into treasure.

Experts – like Joanna Hardy – are on deck at each location to value each piece, whether they are not worth a penny or able to make a large profit.

The latest episode, which was held at Stonor Park in Henley-on-Thames, saw a pearl – or ‘gobstopper – be priced at a whopping £200,000.

Screenshot: Antiques Roadshow, Series 43: Stonor Park 2, Antiques Roadshow Twitter, BBC

Antiques Roadshow: What is a ‘gobstopper’?

  • The ‘gobstopper’ on Antiques Roadshow is actually a Melo Melo pearl

Some fans described the giant pearl as what looks like a gobstopper, but it is actually a pearl with over 100 carats.

The valuable item – is sometimes called a ‘sun pearl’, which could be £200,000 – if not, more, according to expert Joanna Hardy.

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With only ten of them existing across the world, each Melo Melo pearl can range from £25,000 to £250,000.

It reportedly comes from the Melo Melo snail – a marine gastropod from the Volutidae family – and is also known as the Indian volute or the bailer shell.

The pearl has various uses, including jewellery, as the lips of the snail are sometimes cut and rounded to look like Melo pearls.

Antiques Roadshow ‘gobstopper’: Reactions

Viewers who saw the value of the pearl, which several attributed to looking like a gobstopper or Coco Pop cereal, were in shock.

After a scroll on Twitter, it’s clear to see that nobody expected the pearl to actually cost as much as it was valued.

One viewer said: “If anyone wants to get me a Sun Pearl then I wouldn’t say no #antiquesroadshow.”

Another took to Twitter to share their reaction, and wrote: “£200,000 for that pearl on #antiquesroadshow my good lord!”

Gobstopper: Why is it worth £200k?

Each Melo Melo pearl ranges from orange to tan to brown in colour – with orange being the most expensive shade.

As the BBC ‘gobstopper’ was an orange colour, it’s likely that it would be valued at one of the higher prices.

They are considered desirable because each every Melo pearl found is natural and grown in the wild, with no human interference.

It is also a durable gemstone that can last for many decades if it is taken good care of, according to Pearl Wise Pro.

The specific ‘gobstopper’ pearl showcased on the May 16 episode of Antiques Roadshow came from Vietnam’s coastal waters!

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