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is an English antiques dealer, author, after-dinner speaker and broadcaster who is best known from the BBC
The British Broadcasting Corporation is a British public service broadcaster. Its headquarters is at Broadcasting House in the City of Westminster, London. It is the largest broadcaster in the world, with about 23,000 staff...
Antiques Roadshow is a British television show in which antiques appraisers travel to various regions of the United Kingdom to appraise antiques brought in by local people. It has been running since 1979...
He attended Berkhamsted School and his career began with Sotheby's
Sotheby's is the world's fourth oldest auction house in continuous operation.-History:The oldest auction house in operation is the Stockholms Auktionsverk founded in 1674, the second oldest is Göteborgs Auktionsverk founded in 1681 and third oldest being founded in 1731, all Swedish...
, where he worked for four years before joining his family business in Tring
Tring is a small market town and also a civil parish in the Chiltern Hills in Hertfordshire, England. Situated north-west of London and linked to London by the old Roman road of Akeman Street, by the modern A41, by the Grand Union Canal and by rail lines to Euston Station, Tring is now largely a...
(John Bly Antiques, started by John Bly's great grandfather). He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts
The Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufacturers and Commerce is a British multi-disciplinary institution, based in London. The name Royal Society of Arts is frequently used for brevity...
and a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths
The Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths is one of the Livery Companies of the City of London. The Company, which has origins in the twelfth century, received a Royal Charter in 1327. It ranks fifth in the order of precedence of Livery Companies. Its motto is Justitia Virtutum Regina, Latin for Justice...
. For two years he was elected a chairman of the British Antique Dealers Association (BADA).
John Bly appeared on the highly popular BBC1 chat show Wogan
in the late 1980s, during the height of his Antiques Road Show
fame, and entertained the viewing millions by playing a pair of antique silver spoons as musical instruments.
He is the author of Antiques Masterclass: dating and identifying your period pieces