Ridgway Armorial Porcelain Plates – Westhead
Two Ridgway porcelain armorial plates c. 1847, bearing crest, arms, and motto of the Westhead family.
Dimensions: Each approximately 10¼” diameter.
The border has a shaped rim and is decorated in a claret and gilt outer border, a raised blue enamel scroll, and a puce and gilt inner border.
The cavetto is decorated with complex gilt scroll work.
The center bears the arms and crest of the Westhead family, including the motto: “Ora et Labora”, meaning “Pray & Work”.
The reverse bears a puce printed inscription “Presented to J. P. Westhead, Esqr.” within a puce tied sash mark bearing the words: "John Ridgway & Co, Cauldon Place, Potters to her Majesty”.
Joshua Proctor Westhead (1807-1877) was a Manchester merchant and manufacturer, and Director of the London and North-Western Railway Company. He was Member of Parliament for Knaresborough and for York. He was also a prominent Wesleyan Methodist.
The presentation of this service was made on June 15, 1847 at the Albion Hotel, Piccadilly, Manchester, by the shareholders of the Manchester and Birmingham Railway Company in recognition of his work as Chairman of the company prior to its absorption into the London and North-Western Railway Company.
Equally important, he was a patron and later partner of the John Ridgway porcelain company. In 1850 he changed his name to Brown-Westhead by Royal dispensation to incorporate the name and the arms of his mother’s family. By 1859, the company had changed its name to Bates, Brown-Westhead, Moore & Co.
An example of a plate from this service is illustrated in Godden’s “Illustrated Guide to Ridgway Porcelains” plate 70.
An example of a plate from this service is also illustrated and discussed at: http://ridgwaypatternbook.org.uk/cauldon/buckingham.html.
Condition: In excellent condition consistent with age and usage.