Arthur Gredington was one of the leading animal modellers of the 20th Century, not only for Beswick but in the world of ceramics . He was responsible for the creation of nearly 400 models (well over 400 with pieces he collaborated on), some of which will probably be in your own or a relatives china cabinet.
Arthur Noel Gredington (1903-1971) was born in 1903 and after studying at the Royal College, at the age of 32, he took a position in 1939 at Beswick as their first resident modeller. Prior to this modellers at Beswick were employed on a freelance basis. His first model was a Deer on Base (model no 696) which was produced in a natural, flambe and blue glazed editions.
He was able to design any animal but his speciality was horses and dogs. The 1938 Epsom Derby winner Bois Roussell was the subject of Gredington’s first racehorse and breeders reproduction model for which Beswick were to become famous. Later racehorse models included the famous Arkle. Beswick often produced different colourways of models including Bois Roussell which as well as the original brown was also produced in grey. With variations and colourways the range of Gredington horse models available to collectors is over 200, whereas the actual number of actual designs created is around 70.
Gredington’s realism and accuracy in his models made them very popular with collectors and his champion models were especially sought by the farming community.
Gredington was also responsible for many comic and licensed designs. These include the Cat Orchestra and Courting Penguins in 1945, In 1948 Beswick secured the right to reproduce a range of 10 Beatrix Potter earthenware characters, the first of which was Jemima Puddle-Duck which was designed by Gredington. Other character included cartoon, storybook figures, character animals and even designs for Disney including the Seven Dwarfs.
When Gredington retired in 1968 he left a legacy of creations which are still collected today.