Worcester ceramics collection worth £15,000 up for sale

The next antiques sale being held at Farleigh Golf Club will feature an entire collection of Royal Worcester porcelain.

A rare, Persian style Royal Worcester twin handled vase,part of the collection

BBC antiques expert Catherine Southon will be conducting the auction on July 25, with 60 items carrying estimates of between £40 to £2,500.

The items have been put up for sale by a local man who has been collecting Royal Worcester since inheriting a blush ivory vase 50 years ago. This was the start of a Royal Worcester collection that was purchased from fairs, auctions and antique shops and could now be worth at least £15,000.

The pride of the collection is the large table font purchased from a Worthing auction in 1979.

Henry Sandon, the ceramics expert on television’s Antiques Roadshow, provided the collector with advice, particularly on the artists who painted the unsigned pieces. He was also able to attribute the raised work on the pink shot enamel ewer to Leonard Burgess. He was particularly interested in a Persian style vase which he believed was probably a one-off wedding presentation commemorative, possibly for someone who worked at the Worcester factory.

“I am thrilled and honoured to be handling such an extensive collection of 19th century Royal Worcester, it has been interesting hearing the stories how each individual piece was acquired,” Southon said.

TV’s Henry Sandon helped to assess the Worcester collection

“My team and I have thoroughly enjoyed cataloguing such a diverse and attractive collection. My favourite has to be the stunning nautilus centrepiece estimated at £1,500 to £2,500, which is beautifully painted and decorated at every angle.”

Probably the most spectacular piece in the collection is a rare and impressive exhibition piece “The Sower centrepiece”, modelled by James Hadley, which is estimated as being worth between £1,500 – £2,500 and measures nearly 3ft high.

The The Sower centrepiece, modelled by James Hadley, could fetch £2,500

This was purchased by current owner from Worthing Auction Rooms in 1979 and it is believed that this was sold after the exhibition of Worcester around 1900 at the James Howell Store in Cardiff.

The rare – possibly unique – Royal Worcester twin handled vase is estimated at £400 to £600.

It has an impressed signature within one of the swags of Hadley and is was probably made as a
one-off by a member of the Worcester factory for a wedding present. It is decorated throughout the ovoid body with gilt matrimonial trophies including pansies, quivers and arrows, trumpets, a pair of lovebirds.

Elsewhere, a fine quality Royal Worcester ewer, circa 1903, is estimated at £300 to £400. It is decorated with a front panel that is richly painted with apples and grapes and signed Hawkins.

Among the more rare and unusual pieces is a candle snuffer of Jenny Lind “The Swedish Nightingale”, dating from around 1916, which is estimated at £80 to £100, while a pair of unusual Worcester aesthetic movement triple moon flasks, circa 1880, which are each painted with natural history subjects including flamingos, insects, birds and fish are expected to fetch £200 to £300.

The diverse collection shows all aspects of Worcester. A Royal Worcester cabinet reticulated teapot and cover, attributed to George Owen, with Japanesque vignettes of cranes in mountainous landscape is expected to fetch £350 to £500.

Catherine Southon, pictured right, holds six sales a year of furniture, textiles, paintings, ceramics, silver, jewellery, toys and militaria. The July 25 sale is at Farleigh Golf Club, and there will be viewings available the day before the sale. For more information, visit Southon’s website here.

Find out more about Royal Worcester here.


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News, views and analysis about the people of Croydon, their lives and political times in the diverse and most-populated borough in London. Based in Croydon and edited by Steven Downes. To contact us, please email inside.croydon@btinternet.com
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