Heritage100

Crested China Charabanc

China Charabanc

...these affordable collectables were sometimes produced in novelty designs relating to day trips, such as beach huts and this charabanc.

Crested china first became a popular souvenir for the growing number day trippers in Victorian and Edwardian Britain. These small porcelain ornaments, decorated with the coat of arms of the town or resort visited were taken home as a memento of a day out.

This crested china charabanc, manufactured by Arcadian, would have been bought on an outing to Dover. The charabanc became a popular form of leisure travel after the First World War ended in 1918. Left-over wartime lorry chassis’ flooded the market which were turned into charabancs, a French term translating as ‘a coach with benches’. Forward-thinking companies such as King Alfred Motor Coaches of Winchester offered affordable outings for the growing number of day trippers, in search of fun and relaxation after four years at war. Charabancs made leisure travel affordable for the masses and later led to the British passion for coach holidays and outings.

Crested china was first collected in the 1880s and their heyday came to an end following the Great Depression of the 1930s. Mass-produced in a variety of shapes, these affordable collectables were sometimes produced in novelty designs relating to day trips, such as beach huts and this charabanc.

Quick Facts

  • Made in Stoke-on-Trent
  • Made by Arcadian (a tradename used by Arkinstall & Sons Ltd)
  • Date made between 1918 and 1924
  • Made of Porcelain
  • Souvenir of Dover
  • Dimensions Length 145mm, Height 60mm, Width 40mm

Facts

  • The charabanc is a reminder of the annual outings to the seaside for factory workers run in the earlier part of the twentieth century.
  • In all there are over 2,500 different models of Crested China ranging from parian figures to tea services to pots and jugs to beautiful coloured figures, and they can be found with over 10,000 different decorations.

Did you know?

The National Motor Museum has a real charabanc in its collection – a 1922 Maxwell Charabanc

Gallery

360 degree rotation of China Charabanc

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