FOR SALE: Original North Light Percheron Mare
North Light Percheron mare, bay #P1171B
Size: Height 8 3/4"H, x 9 1/2"L
Identifying marks & logos:
has North Light stamp on inside hind leg, plus: ©NL 95 MADE IN UK
The Percheron breed originated in northern France in the Normandy region. This horse is the most famous and numerous of the French draft breeds, and was probably created from a mixing of local Norman horses, Oriental breeds left behind in Europe by the Moors and some Arabian blood. This cross breeding created the large heavy draft horse used first by medieval knights and then for agriculture and cart work. The additional infusion of Arab blood in the 19th century contributed to the Percheron being more active and lively than other heavy horse breeds. The Percheron of today, is a more refined horse, with intelligence, good-natured personality, spirited and willing attitude and exceptional elegance for such a heavy breed.
This large North Light model is true to the breed standard: with good bone, strong heavily muscled shoulders and hind quarters, and medium length sturdy legs with large hooves and no feathering. A life-like face with large moist looking eyes completes this wonderful creation.
This is one of the original North Light horses produced by the North Light factory in Stoke-On-Trent, England (not China) - before the company was sold to Wade Ceramics, and before Wade outsourced these molds for production in China.
This mold has been discontinued for some time now, and quite rare. The original (made in Stoke-On-Trent, UK; with North Light backstamp) are truly rare and very difficult to come by. In fact, all the original North Light horses are becoming extremely rare and hard to find.
North Light model horse figurines are made of a porcelain and resin composition, which allow for the extensive mold detailing (some with individual hair detailing, braided manes & tails, etc) that is very evident in the finish. The figurines are finished in a studio where they are airbrushed with the body color and shading required for the particular breed piece. Next comes the hand detailing , which can be extensive, depending on the horses’ color pattern. Pinto and appaloosa patterns require extensive hand work, and vary greatly from horse to horse. Facial features also receive hand detailing, with expressive, lifelike eyes which have a final gloss application to make them look moist and realistic. Touches of pink are added to muzzles. Nostrils are darkened inside to add depth.
With this degree of hand detailing, each model horse will vary slightly.
North Light is a company located in Stoke-On-Trent, Staffordshire, England. The area is famous for its potteries and figurines, including the well known Wedgwood, Beswick and Royal Doulton brands. In 2005, the North Light factory was sold - including all existing North Light molds - to the company: WADE CERAMICS LTD (yes, the same company that made those little whimsy figurines found in red rose tea boxes years ago). Wade repackaged the existing North Light horses under their new trademark and resold them within the Wade division as "North Light @ Wade" horses.
Directly from Wade Co. website, verbatim:
Contributed by Carol Atrak
Monday, 18 July 2005
We have pleasure in announcing that Wade has purchased certain assets from Dennis Doyle of the North Light resin figurine range. North Light, which will trade as a division within Wade as "North Light @ Wade", is famous for its range of dogs, farm animals, horses and wildlife figurines. They are manufactured in resin and hand painted. The "Classic Dog and Horse Ranges" are finished in marble, china blue, bronze, Monet and other effects to grace the sideboards and coffee tables of the World's finest homes.
Managing Director, Paul Farmer said, "North Light @ Wade" will bring a new dimension to Wade's figurine capability and Wade's mechanisms for online purchases of its ceramic products will be adapted to cater for North Light products too. We are also looking forward to improving our ceramic hand painting techniques which come with the North Light asset purchase."
Artists, Guy Pocock and Anne Godfrey, have been retained to continue modelling new lines and Clare Beswick, from that famous family of figurine makers which bears her name, has been appointed Sales and Product Manager for North Light @ Wade.
The manufacture has been moved from Biddulph to a separate resin area within Wade's Royal Victoria Pottery in Burslem.
In 2008, Wade announced they would no longer produce the North Light @Wade horses (and dogs) at the factory (in the UK). Instead they decided to release a new line: "North Light @ Wade Premier Collection" (consisting of 17 horses and 22 dogs) - to be produced in China. Many of the existing NL horses you see being sold on eBay (and elsewhere) today, bear the "made in China" sticker, along with the NL backstamp.
In 2009, Wade ceased production altogether on all existing North Light models . Today, North Light horses are no longer being produced, sold or marketed by Wade Ceramics, making these horses highly sought after, valuable and rare.
I have no idea what the Wade Co. decided to do with all the existing North Light horses. Some say they sold the existing molds to a company in China.
If your North Light horse has the "©North Light Made in the UK" backstamp, you have a very rare & valuable collectible indeed!