Here is a selection of horses that have paid a visit to the Holmebank workshop.

 

 

A lovely old F.H.Ayres horse that came to us with most of his originality in tact. Acording to the stencill on the base he was first purchased from 'Henrys' a department store in Manchester, probably in the thirties. Our client wanted us to preserve as much as possible and it was a pleasure to work on him. It's so hard to find one like this these days as a lot have been messed about with. He will be going into a magnificent collection of horses.

 

A Baby Carriages 'Rambler' from the late 1930s. All original paintwork and tack. Carefully preserved.

 

A G&J Lines extra carved Improved rocking horse circa 1910. Very rare chestnut colour purchased from the Pygmalion stores, Boar lane, Leeds. New cow hair mane and tail and new saddle, the rest was just preservation. The client was delighted that we didn't turn him into a 'new horse'  He's now a prop in a photographic studio. Most photographic studios in the early 1900's would have had a rocking horse as a prop for the children to pose on. What goes round comes round!

This is the same model as the chestnut horse above in fact it came originaly from the same Pygmalion store in Leeds, how's that for a coincidence? Full restoration.

A Brassington and Cooke Velocepeed. He had a leg missing and no tyres when he arrived but other than that we just lightly preserved him. He is now part of a collection in Australia.

F.H.Ayres 'D' Type. This model is thought by many to be the pinacle of the Ayres stable. I can't disagree. Loved working on this old gent.

'Hera'   A very unusual horse that came in for a repaint and new extra longmane and tail. The saddle was refurbished but we fitted a new bridle. We really enjoyed this one. Something completely different.

  Not a rocking horse but a full size fibreglass saddlery manequin. We bought it covered in gloss black and white like a travellers horse. We mounted it on an astro turf plinth.  He looks much smarter as a grey. We parked him up out side the showrooms in Mirfield and chuckled every time someone came into the yard as their eyes popped out thinking there was a loose horse!

'Ralph'  A 43" Woodrow Swallow from around 1930. Full restoration on this one.

'Charlotte'. A 32" Baby Cariages of Liverpool. Full restoration.

'FREDERICK'  By FH Ayres. This handsome gent only required minimal work which is testament to the high quality workmanship of this marque. 

A lovely little Lines Sporty boy. Full restoration.

  'GODOLPHIN' an extermely rare early 19th century bow rocking horse. He had to have a complete restoration here at Holmebank. Amazingly he had his original saddle a bit scruffy but lashings of leather cream preserved it.He looks like the racehorse paintings from the 18th and 19th century a bit fierce at full speed, loads of character we love him.

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'GYPSY' A wonderfull old bow rocker of unknown maker. We had to fully restore this one as it arrived bare wood!

This is a rare 'Ragamuffin' horse. Only about 300 were made. It is a fiberglass horse mounted on a spring base, modeled on the Crandal horse from the USA. Full restoration.

Another Ragamuffin with the best quality tack. Now in Australia.

'Silver' A 54" Norton and Barker circa 1920s. He is nearly as big as our kids first pony! Full restoration.

A stunning Harold Wakefield rocking horse. She came to us in an awfull state. Surface all sun bleached and water stained. She took hours to get right but it was a real pleasure to have worked on such a beutifull sculpture.

Another 'RAGAMUFFIN' With top quality Saddlery and extra long mane. Children love this model it's great fun to ride.

'TREACLE' is a David and Noreen Kiss reproduction of a Victorian Lines horse.  Exquisitely carved and sitting on a quality hardwood stand she is finished off with a lovely English leather saddle and bridle and although she was made in 2000 she looks like she has rarely been ridden. Rocking horses by David and Noreen Kiss will undoubtebly become highly collectable and I can see them going up in value as the 21st century unfolds.     

'WILLIAM' A late 1970's medium Haddon. With English Havanna leather saddle and bridle made especially for him. Full restoration.

This is a very rare Wilson Silver Cross from about 1920. He came in for some carefull preservation. Client delighted. He is amazingly original. The only additions are reins and stirrup leathers from vintage leather and new mane and tail, the stand needed a rebuild as it was very sloppy. Then a thorough clean and wax polish.

'Florence' a  G& J Lines 'Improved old style rocking horse number 21a' circa 1914. Sympathetic preservation. Now has a permanent home in Belgium.

'ECLIPSE' A lovely big 'Honeycombe of Devon' bow rocker. Our client requested pale palomino and no tack. Before painting this model we re-shape the jaw which is always very over shot and in our minds looks odd. The little extra work makes a world of difference.

'Mr BENNET' is a G&J. Lines horse about 1910. Full restoration.

 

'CHARLIE' is a very rare Whiley brothers horse from about 1930. He came to our workshops structurally sound but had been overpainted many times with gloss paint. Hours were spent carefully removing the thick layers, we have managed to reveal the majority of his original paintwork and retouched were necessary. The tack was shot but we took patterns from it and made new saddlery but used all the old brassware. He now looks as near original as possible.  Full restoration on this one. (We trimmed his mane and tail for the new owner to a more traditional length) 

Subtle grey paint job on this fibreglass horse.

'HUBERT'  is a 52"  G & J Lines Rocking Horse Circa 1900-1910. This imposing gentleman has all his original paintwork which is very rare. His saddle has been expertly replaced by David & Noreen Kiss but as far as we can tell the rest of him is all original. Light preservation.

'MERLIN' is large Haddon Rocking Horses. Standing approx 50" high and dates from about 1970. He has re-shaped head details and a realistic hand painted finish. Dark havana leather tack and a fabulous new flowing mane and tail. The Haddon Rocking Horses are made from GRP ( fibreglass ) so are extremely robust and perfect for children to have hours of fun on.

'HAROLD' is an outstanding 42" high extra carved 'Legends' rocking horse. Made in 1993 he is in original condition with the exception of a new mane and tail . Legends are acclaimed as one of the finest rocking horse makers in the Uk.  Light preservation.

'ADAM' A very rare Whiley Brothers of Leeds horse from the 1930's standing 34", sympathetically preserved. He retains much of his original paintwork. His tack is made from aged leather taken from patterns of the original.

'SILVER' is a medium Haddon standing 41". Lovely dark dapple grey with luxurious grey mane and tail. He is fitted with Jasper Highet dark havana tack.  Full restoration.

'TITCH'  A G & J Lines push along horse from circa 1900.  This little chap stands just 24" from floor to top of his ears. Full restoration.

  'ECLIPSE'  A very special 19th century bow rocker. Hours of work put into this old gentleman but well worth the effort.

'Mr Ed.' A 50" Haddon horse from about 1980. Fitted with Western tack all the way from Ohio USA. A break from the norm, the customer was delighted so was the little jockey.


'HEIDI'   A very unusual horse. Excuisitly created by a highly skilled carver, the trouble is we don't know who they are!! In the 30 odd years that we have been involved in rocking horses we have never seen anything like her. Full restoration.

Extra large plain carved F. H. Ayres. Full restoration.

'PUMPKIN' a medium Haddon fibreglass horse finished in the traditional style. Full restoration.

'GEORGE' a 'Honeycomb of Devon' bow rocker. Full restoration. He needs a lot of space!

'LINCOLN'  A magnificent Harold Wakefield horse with breathtaking detail, simply the best. Light preservation.

'MONTY'  An extra large rocking horse. Elegantly carved and suitable for a large child. Or an adult who always wanted one and now can!  Light preservation.

This was an interesting project sent to us by one of our clients. It was in a real state, something had been nesting in the upholstery (don't ask) The harness was shot to bits but after many hours we think the end result is good. The client was over the moon. Sympathetic preservation.

A Medium Haddon with traditional paintwork and modern tack, works quite well we think. This model is one of Davids favourite horses to paint and he can't understand why some people are a bit 'sniffy' about fibreglass horses. The people that designed the moulds to create this model were real craftsmen (or women!) It is very closely based on the F H Ayres D type, and is perfect for play. Full restoration.

'Charlie' A Lines size 00. Full restoration.

  One of our favourite horses that we've had at Holmebank. A masterpiece by Harold Wakefield. He came to us directly from Harolds family. We were almost tempted to keep him! Sorry no work needed doing, so shouldn't be in this list but couldn't resist showing him. We sold him to some good friends in the UK before we moved to Australia.

This was a lovely project to work on. 'FIN' is a G&J LINES galloper from around 1895. He came to us very battered but thats understandable with a fairground horse. We built his stand to replicate a section of the ride, complete with barley twist brass pole. He is named after our grandson who loves the horses at Darling harbour Sydney and we decorated the plinth in a similar style the that ride.

 'Tip-toe' A medium Haddon. Full Holmebank restoration.

A very early Harold Wakefield horse. Note the cantle support carved into the horse to lift the back of the saddle. Light preservation only.

   'WINSTON'   F.H.Ayres horse from 1895  He is a delightfull looking horse that was partially restored in another English workshop and we completed him with tack and mane/tail.

  'THE COLONEL'  53" high and exquisitively carved this unattributed old gent had a full restoration with us.

 This is a unfinished carving by the late Harold Wakefield. Harold sadly passed before he could complete it. His pencil lines are visible where he would have done his next session on it. Because it's such a sculptural piece we decided to just mount it on a plinth with all four feet off the ground, It makes you smile every time you walk past it.

A magnificant Sevensons Bro's nursery bow. Needs a big room! Nothing to do to this horse it was like new but couldn't resist posting it on here.

  A lovely example of an Ayres horse, she had to have a new stand made, we pushed the boat out and used best English oak.

 A fine example of the old favourite 'Sportyboy' Full restoration

  'WOODROW SWALLOW' Full restoration.

  A superb unatributed horse, full restoration.

   Delightfull little F.H.Ayres bow rocker.  Full restoration.

  G&J Lines No 21. Full restoration.

   Delightfull little Ayres from around 1895. Full restoration. The client didn't send the stand but it's in good condition so will have to be assembled on it's return.

 This is a very old lady indeed. We think from the Regency period around 1820s. Full restoration on this one. definitely one of our favourite horses that we have worked on.

 Late Roebuck re modelled to clients requirements.

 An early seventies Roebuck. Palomino.

 A cute little Roebuck 'Colt Rocker' From the 50's.

  'JACOB'  A very rare Roebuck circa 1915 Full restoration.

 A 1960s Roebuck in the traditional style. full restoration.

  This Roebuck from the 50s belongs to a lady who had followed us on facebook when we were in the UK. She couldn't believe it when we moved in on the same street as her in Narrabeen! You couldn't make it up could you. Full restoration on this one.

  'Little Buck'  A tiny Roebuck from around 1920. Standing only 29" Full restoration.

 A Roebuck 'Pedal Pony' We loved working on this little lady. It's such a well designed toy.

  Another 29" Roebuck from around 1930. full restoration.

 'JOEY' A 60s Roebuck in palomino remodled to clients requirements.

 A lovely old Roebuck 24" body. Full restoration.

 A Roebuck size 6 the biggest model they made. circa 1920s. Full restoration.

This is a size 5 Roebuck from around 1920. he has most of his original paint which had been covered up with modern gloss. very hard to find one with original paint. A privelage to work on.

 1930s Roebuck, full restoration. Unusual saddle cloth pattern on this one. We managed to retain it as the client wanted the horse to look as original as possible as it has been in the familly fron new !

 A lovely original Baby Carriages Rambler that came in for a little light preservation.

An early Lines horse that came in without bows. The client wanted it to look old and play worn with no tack and we think it was the right choice. We made the bow rockers from American oak nice and simple.

 F H Ayres 49"  Full restoration

   Roebuck circa 1920. size 4. Full restoration

 A  G&J Lines horse that came in for a full restoration. She had to have a new head carved as someone had butchered hers.The client wanted an antique look with no tack. We made the dark oak bows to complement the clients furnishings.

 Ziggy, A late Roebuck rocking horse converted into a rocking zebra complete with his pals the giraffe family.

   A late Roebuck in Smokey Palomino. Full restoration to clients requirements.

    This horse came to us covered in battleship grey paint. Sue spent hours picking and managed to reveal his original paintwork! The stand was equally coated in brown but came up a treat and we managed to retain the patent stencil and a number 7 denoting its size. It was felt that fitting tack would have strayed away from his originality as no one knows what style of tack it would have been fitted with so we just settled for a whispy mane and tail. Our client is over the moon and didn't expect such a stunning result.

   Lines Brothers Sporty boy. Full restorstion.

  A delightfull little Smiths bow. Full restoration.