W. BRITAIN SETS OF DISTINCTION
Singled out due to their rarity, uniqueness, and value, The Stewart W. Britain Figures Collection contains eight sets of distinction:
- The Clyde Model Dockyard Mechanical Display
- The Civilians Version Two Set
- The Archer with Target
- The Boer War Supply Column
- The North American Indians and Cowboys Set
- The Circus Roundabout
- The Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs Set
- The Salvation Army Band
The Unique Clyde Model Dockyard Mechanical Display
pictured above was displayed in the window of The Clyde Model Dockyard Hobby shop in Glasgow Scotland during the 1930s. Eight separate tin plate mounted groups of figures would have originally been mechanically driven in order to rotate around the window. This group is the only one known to exist. W. Britain also made larger mechanical displays for the Coronations of 1937 and 1953 but were eventually broken up and sold as individual items.
North American Indians and Cowboys Display, Special Assortment, S.A, 1913
Civilians Version Two, Set # 168, 1925
Originally named “Civilians” when issued, the title of the set was changed to “Pedestrians” around 1926. W Britain was well known for being up to date on trends in military and civilian clothing. The set displayed is the second version featuring females in popular late 1920s style flapper dresses while the first version included ladies in Edwardian garb with long dresses and headscarf’s holding on to their motoring hats.
Mammoth Circus Roundabout, Set #1439
The rarest, most desirable of all W. Britain civilians sets, #1439: Mammoth Circus Roundabout with its original box . A wonderful working toy, you can almost hear the pipe organ playing as the kids ride! Circa 1936.
Archer with Target, Set #1344, 1934
This archer was part of an experimental line of non-aggression style toys produced between the two World Wars after which the sales of military themed toys lost favor with consumers. The archer is a departure from the traditional 2 1⁄4 inch tall Britain figure, standing at 4 inches.
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Set #654, 1938.
W. Britain entered a licensing agreement with Disney to produce The Snow white figures along with other Disney characters. Snow White was the first full-length animated feature film released in 1937 and Disney's earliest animated feature film. The complete and intact boxed set with names of the Dwarves is exceptionally difficult to obtain and is eagerly sought after by both lead figure and Disney collectors.
Set Of Distinction: Boer War Supply Column, 1901
W. Britain did not sell this set pictured above, thy did not give it a designated catalog number, include it in their listing, or feature it in any of their catalogs. The item was sold exclusively by wholesaler C.F. Eckhardt and Company Limited (C.F.E). This set is usually included in the top 12 most desirable sets sought after by Collectors of W. Britain figures.
Salvation Army: Officers, Band& Colors, Set #10, 1906
This is one of the rarest W. Britain sets, the inclusion of the original box, which is the only one known to exist makes this set extremely rare and valuable. The set was discontinued in 1908.