The Yattendon Class

The Yattendon Class was believed to have been established in 1890 by Mrs Waterhouse, the wife of the eminent Victorian Architect Alfred Price Waterhouse best known for designing the Natural History Museum in South Kensington.

The class flourished until 1914 and work was regularly exhibited in the HAIA annual exhibitions. The Studio Magazine featured reviews of Yattendon metalwork from 1895 to 1902.

In a review of its work from 1895 The Studio wrote: 'The Yattendon stall also keeps its place, and by a fine show of repousse copper, excellent in its design and thoroughly characteristic of the metal. The reticence of the ornament, its simple originality, and naive restraint may be a little archaic, but, if so, the affection is so charming that it adds grace to the whole. Indeed, superlatives may be not misplaced in praising certain other schools'.

Typical arts and crafts motifs such as fish, galleons, peacocks, hearts and roses were often seen on tankards, chargers, vases and letterracks, more uncommon motifs such as wind blown trees, sheep, strawberries, giraffes, deer and leopards also featured.

Most of the designs were created by Mrs Waterhouse herself, but other members of the family including: Paul; Amyas and; Florence were also known to design for the class. Output was mainly produced in copper and brass and very occasionally pewter.

The handle construction on vases and tankards as well as the shallow nature of the repousse and background punching or grounding are very distinctive. Unfortunately Yattendon metalware does not appear to have been stamped but does occasionally have surviving pen inscriptions to the base.

Known Craftsmen include:

A Aldridge; H Bransden; Arthur Bunce; Walter Cox; Fred Crook; John Fisher; George Frost; Geaorge Loader; John Maher; James Newman; M Reynolds; Harry Smith; E Woodley.

Further Reading:

The Studio and The Artist coverage of the HAIA exhibitions.

Request for Information:

I would be most greatful to hear from anybody who has any further information on the Yattendon Class