As early as 1792, the Ridgway brothers produced quality earthenwares in Shelton, Staffordshire, England. Ridgway factories produced almost every conceivable kind of pottery. One of the branches produced a line called Coaching Days and Coaching Ways.
The Coaching Days and Coaching Ways series was created on an amber brown transferware pottery with black transfers. It was made in the 1890s to the 1920s. The series features illustrations chosen from ones by Hugh Thomson & Herbert Railton, that were contained in the book “Coaching Days and Coaching Ways” by W. Outram Tristram. The book was first published in 1888.
Each item showcases different scenes from routes along old English stagecoach roads. The coaches traveled between inns and villages and the scenes featured on the pottery highlight the travel and inns. Some of the buildings are still standing today.
Transferware is a transfer printing process whereas a metal plate is etched with a familiar scene and ink is applied and then a tissue print is produced. The print is then applied to the pottery on top of the brown glaze.
The series was produced on mugs, tankards, plates, pitchers, serving pieces and various other everyday items used throughout the British Empire. Some of the items have silver luster applied to the handles and rims, which would have been applied during the firing process. Some of the plates and serving items have scalloped edges with a relief pattern. Almost all items have crazing (crackling) because of the type of glazed used on the pottery.
Each piece of pottery should be marked on the base with “Scenes from Coaching Days & Coaching Ways by Special Permission of Macmillan & Co. Ltd. Ridgway England”. Macmillan & Co. refers to a book publisher in London, England and New York, New York. They owned the copyrights to the book and the coaching illustrations.
I started my collection of the pottery when I inherited a piece from my grandmother. I now have an extensive collection of the Coaching Days and Coaching Ways. My favorite piece is the spittoon.
If you are looking for the value of your Ridgway piece, we’ve listed a selection of our inventory with RETAIL prices. Condition and scene will have a bearing on the value, as will the uniqueness of the piece. We do not appraise pieces, so we hope this will provide you with some guidance. Please note that RETAIL prices are helpful with insurance values, but one cannot expect to sell these items to a dealer or collector at the full value price.