Meridian Television's Southampton studios go under the hammer in a mammoth million-pound auction.

ITV bosses have earmarked 10,000 items for sale in one of the biggest clear-outs in broadcasting history as the company finally closes down its Northam studios.

Earlier this year, Meridian moved to a state-of-the-art new venue in Whiteley, near Fareham, ending an era of TV production in Southampton.

Today, hundreds of monitors, computers, desks and chairs will go under the hammer in a marathon auction expected to last from 10.30am until 7pm.

Even a temporary building has been allocated a lot number and will be packed up and sold to the highest bidder.

Potential buyers from 49 different countries are expected to take part in the sell-off via a live webcast auction. About 200 people will pack into two auction rooms on site.

Everything that can be stripped from the former TVS studios in Radcliffe Road, Northam, has been tagged with a lot number.

Cups, saucers and cutlery are being sold en masse and buyers can lay their hands on collections of kettles, fans, radiators and stationery.

Yesterday, film cameras, sound mixing desks, speakers, video players and microphones were laid out in rows at the redundant studios as hundreds of prospective bidders turned out for the viewing day.

General manager Jan Beal, who has been working for Meridian for 40 years, said: "Literally everything is up for sale. It's been a mammoth job sorting and tagging everything.

"There are 2,735 lots, which we reckon will bring in just under £1m. Many people coming in have said what a shame it is, and you can't help but feel a little nostalgic."

The Dream Factory is a fascinating book looking back over the history of Meridian, TVS and Southern Television at their Northam Studios. To order a copy click the link on the 'This is Southampton' homepage.