Restoration of Leeway Rocking Horses
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The wooden rocking horses that were made in London by Patterson Edwards are often seen in our restoration workshops, and we have a great deal of experience of repairing, restoring, renovating, refurbishing and reviving them.
The firm of Patterson Edwards can trace its origins back to 1892 when it began life as a small shop on the Old Kent Road. By 1916 the company had become a producer of a range of wooden toys, including rocking horses. The 1920s saw a major expansion of the firm: New premises were purchased at Lee in south-east London and that location gave its name to the trade name 'Leeway' that was introduced in 1926, the same year in which Patterson Edwards became a limited company. The signature Leeway rocking horses were to be produced for another 40 years until around 1970.
The design of the Leeway transfer that was applied to the stand of the Patterson Edwards horses varied over the years, but the one common factor was that the letter 'L' of the Leeway name was replaced by the £ symbol. The company was keen to present itself as a value for money option. The Leeway horses will have been competing with the Sportiboy rocking horses made by fellow south London company, Lines Brothers, and it seems likely that the Leeway horse was the lower priced of the two.
The Leeway rocking horses were to enjoy success in the 1930s before production ceased for the period of the Second World War, but the majority of the Leeway rocking horses that we restore date from the 1950s or 1960s. By then, many other rocking horse makers such as Ayres and Lines Brothers had ceased to produce; the main competitor for the Leeway horse was the Collinson.
Leeways are robust rocking horses that make great candidates for restoration, as they can be restored to bring pleasure to future generations.
Kensington Rocking Horse Company is a specialist restorer of Leeway rocking horses and other antique rocking horses and we provide expert bespoke restoration, renovation and refurbishment. Please contact us and we will be delighted to provide recommendations, more example photos and costings.
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