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Tudor treasures at Hever

PUBLISHED: 16:19 10 May 2015 | UPDATED: 16:19 10 May 2015

Jonathan Foyle, Alsion Weir, Duncan Leslie, Ian Coulsdon and Amanda Cottrell at Hever Castle

Jonathan Foyle, Alsion Weir, Duncan Leslie, Ian Coulsdon and Amanda Cottrell at Hever Castle

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From Canterbury Auction Gallery's antique of the month to two Tudor treasures unveiled at Hever and capturing Whitstable in photographic form

Antique of the month by Tony Pratt of The Canterbury Auction Galleries

Liverpool girl Ruth Bare (1880-1962) was born to be an artist. She was ambidextrous and could draw the same picture with each hand simultaneously. Della Robbia pottery was produced briefly in Birkenhead on Merseyside from 1894-1906 and despite having had no artistic training, Ruth was given a job there at the tender age of 16, remaining until its closure.

Interest in the pottery is enjoying a resurgence, in part following the publication of a new book on the subject written by Peter Hyland, who devotes five pages to the talented young painter.

This fine charger, modelled and painted by Ruth, sold for £1,400 in our last sale. It was decorated with a central portrait of the Madonna surrounded by a winged angel border in pale colours. It measured 18.75ins in diameter, and was dated 1899 and marked with Ruth’s monogram.

Because of its short existence, pottery produced by Della Robbia is scarce. The publication of any new research always has a positive effect on values and this has a knock-on effect to prices being achieved in the saleroom. Now might be the time to consider selling that unwanted vase or plate. Look for the sailing ship trademark.

● The Canterbury Auction Galleries holds free saleroom valuation sessions every Friday morning between 10am and 1pm. Specialists are always available to handle and appraise items brought in and to explain the auction process should anyone wish to sell. For further information, please telephone us on 01227 763337.

Two Tudor treasures

Two rare Tudor treasures were unveiled at Hever Castle, where special guests included historian and TV presenter Kate Williams, historian and author Alison Weir, Visit Kent Chairman, Amanda Cottrell, and members of the Guthrie family, the current owners of Hever Castle.

International art dealer and TV presenter, Philip Mould unveiled a rare Tudor portrait of Henry VIII as a young man and also talked about discovering the only surviving portrait of Henry’s brother, Arthur, for Hever Castle, which he still considers to be the greatest acquisition the castle has made.

This was followed by the official opening of a new exhibition A Bed of Roses by TV historian Dr Jonathan Foyle in the Long Gallery of the Castle, when he revealed his ‘journey of discovery’ authenticating the bed which is believed to be the marriage bed of Henry VII and Elizabeth of York.

The unveiling of these two treasures coincides with the recent broadcast of BBC Two’s Wolf Hall and the public’s renewed interest in all things Tudor. They will be displayed in the setting where one of history’s great tales of passion between Anne Boleyn and Henry VIII played out.

The one and only

The Whitstable Improvement Trust (WIT) and the Whitstable Community Museum & Gallery (WCM&G) are collaborating to produce a 2016 Calendar for the town and local photographers are invited to submit photographs, for entry to a competition, around the theme: ‘Whitstable - The one and only.’

All people (aged 11 or older) who live, learn, work or grew up in CT5 are eligible to submit one or two previously unpublished photos before 12 June 2015.

A team of independent judges will select from the entries the pictures that will feature in the 2016 calendar, which will be sold from the start of the Oyster Festival through to Christmas by various outlets in the town including the Community Museum and The Whitstable Shop.

● For further information, contact Lou Fowkes, Trust Manager at the WIT, at: wit.whitstable34@talktalk.net or call 01227 770060.

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