The 'Prepare' transfer below has defied my attempts at attribution. The two plaque forms in the left photo are unusual – the rectangular form resembles plaques I've attributed to Sheriff Hill. The plaque form in the right picture, on which the transfer most commonly appears, is similar to those produced by several potteries – Carr, Dixon, Moore, Scott – in the 1850s and 60s.
I've been having a clear out and found the cracked plaque below, shoved in a pile in a cupboard. It's unusual because of its size.
Compare the sizes of two plaques in the photos below. The larger plaque is 233mm x 202mm, and the smaller plaque, 210mm x 188mm. So a big difference.
What struck me looking at the large plaque, was its similarity in shape and feel to the brown-bordered plaques, commonly attributed to Scott (below right). The 'Thou god' plaque measures 231mm x 203mm. It is less finely modelled than the 'Prepare' plaque, but could in my view have come later from the same mould.
So what of the smaller plaque? It is almost identical in size to the plaque on the right, which has a Moore & Co impressed mark (210mm x187mm). Note also that the 'Prepare' plaque shares another Moore feature – a darker pink inner and outer lustre border
We know that Scott and Moore shared transfers, so the dual attribution sounds even more feasible. One thing slightly bothers me though... these plaques are fairly common, and Moore & Co (unlike Scott) were pretty good at marking their plaques. If the attribution were correct, it wouldn't be unreasonable to expect to find one with a Moore & Co impressed mark. But I haven't seen one yet. Perhaps you have one?
At the risk of being accused of having my cake and eating it, I should remind everyone that only four months ago, I was tentatively attributing a similar plaque to Carr, on the basis of its lustre decoration. Read more here.
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.