I feel I have neglected this blog for a while (I've spent weeks cataloguing files, we lost one of our cats and found her again, I've had shirts to iron...), but as recompense, here's a transfer I'd never seen before. It's a Dixon, Phillips & Co plaque, with colliding meteorites motif, and the transfer 'PRESENT FROM HARTLEPOOL.' It has the 'Dixon Co' impressed mark, in a straight line, used from after circa 1850.
Copper transfer plates were expensive to engrave, and could produce hundreds, perhaps thousands, of transfers, and yet to date this is the only one I've seen of its kind. I've seen a pink-lustre plate with the title 'PRESENT FROM SUNDERLAND', or similar, but never on a plaque. The plaque's new owner says that the text is 'raised up' and that 'you can almost read it with your finger'.
I haven't been to Hartlepool, which is about 20 miles south of Sunderland, so had to look it up. I found this interesting website... http://www.thisishartlepool.co.uk/gallery/oldpictures3.asp ...from which the pictures below were taken (the first three between 1905 and 1910).
It perhaps seems an unlikely destination to have a lively trade in souvenirs, which gives me hope of one day finding a plaque marked 'PRESENT FROM HULL.'
I aim to take some photographs in the next few weeks and have a long overdue catch up, adding them to the website.
Stephen Smith lives in London, and is always happy to hear from other collectors. If you have an interesting collection of plaques, and are based in the UK, he will photograph them for you. Free advice given regarding selling and dispersal of a collection, or to those wishing to start one. Just get in touch...
This website is indebted to collectors, dealers and enthusiasts who have shared their knowledge or photos. In particular: Ian Holmes, Stephen Duckworth, Dick Henrywood, Norman Lowe, Keith Lovell, Donald H Ryan, Harold Crowder, Jack and Joyce Cockerill, Myrna Schkolne, Elinor Penna, Ian Sharp, Shauna Gregg at the Sunderland Museum, Keith Bell, Martyn Edgell, and Liz Denton.