Discontinued Collectibles Guide

Beswick Pottery Collectibles

Founded in 1892 Beswick came on to the pottery collectables scene rather later than some of the other great names in English pottery and china such as Wedgewood, Spode, Coalport and others, all established over a hundred years prior to Beswick. James Wright Beswick set up the business in Gold Street, Longton, Stoke-on-Trent. It was a fairly run-of-the-mill pottery until his sons, John and Gilbert joined him in the business. Together, they produced tableware and ornaments including the well known Staffordshire cats and dogs which soon attracted the attention of collectors.

Though these early products are well known to collectors and they are indeed collectibles in their own right, the most highly collectable Beswick pottery figurines came along much later. James Wright Beswick himself died in 1921 and the company came under the control of his grandson, John Ewart Beswick. It continued to expand and in 1934 John introduced high fired bone china to the factory’s product range. This enabled the company to produce the really high quality china collectibles it is famous for today. The emphasis on producing lifelike animal figurines came about following the appointment of Arthur Gredington as chief modeller in 1939 to work alongside Jim Hayward the decorating manager.

The company continued to expand despite the war, mainly by concentrating on the export trade where possible and the production of utility goods for the home market, and in 1945 acquired the factory next door. It was Lucy Beswick who came up with the idea of producing characters from the illustrations in the Beatrix Potter books which were an immediate success, especially with collectors. Disney characters followed in 1952. All of these remain sought after as collectibles today. Royal Doulton bought the company in 1969 and in 1989 the Beswick backstamp ceased to be used, being replaced by the Royal Doulton Royal Albert DA backstamp.

Production of Beswick products by Royal Doulton came to an end in 2002 and the Gold Street Works was sold for development. However, The John Beswick name and tradition lives on. In 2005 John Sinclair (Sheffield) Ltd bought the Beswick brand name together with production moulds and archive material. Production of a number of animal figurines continues in Yorkshire. The supply of new Beswick collectables has not dried up yet.

On each of the pages within this section dedicated to Beswick Pottery collectibles we have included links to live and current online auctions dealing in each theme. In addition, where known, we have added details of collector clubs, forums and websites. We wish you every success in tracking down the missing pieces of your discontinued Beswick Pottery collection and hope you will become a regular visitor to Accumulations. Remember it’s an ever-changing scene so it is always worth a return visit!

If you are interested in a specific type or genre of Beswick Pottery collectible, click on one of the following links:-


Please also check out the Beswick Pottery Books, Related Dealers and Useful Resources listed on this page.

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