Aynsley set c.1950 by Joseph A Bailey – £8600 at Bushey Auctions.

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Employed by the Longton factory for most of his life, from 1937-74, he put his signature to many of firm’s better quality ‘cabinet’ wares.

Anachronistic bouquets of English garden flowers, and particularly large pink cabbage roses, were his typical stock in trade and they can bring surprisingly high prices. In March 2019 a 21-piece tea service for six sold for £4600 at Arthur Johnson in Nottingham, followed in November 2019 by a bid of £3200 for a similar part set at Special Auction Services.

Fifties Regency style

More spectacular evidence of the commercial appeal of Bailey’s work was provided by Bushey Auctions (18% buyer’s premium) in Hertfordshire on April 1.

This set c.1950 decorated in the Regency style with bouquets of flowers against a red and gilt ground, included a teapot in addition to the cream jug, sugar bowl and other serving pieces. The auction house guided it at £200-300 but bidding reached £8600.

The price is way above anything paid for Aynsley in recent years.

However, back in 2007 a massive Can$48,000 (£22,900) was bid for a 22-piece dessert service decorated with topographical scenes at Waddington’s of Toronto.

Marked with the factory logo and a design registration code for December 2, 1879, all bore titled scenes based on Seymour Penson’s illustrations in the contemporary Guide Book and Atlas of Muskoka and Parry Sound. It was probably a special commission from the Staffordshire factory, possibly ordered by a lumber baron.