Coming Home


I have always been fascinated by detail. I love to pore over old family photographs looking for hidden things; tiny clues to a way of life long gone. A brooch or a hint of a lace collar, a silver topped cane, a top hat or a pair of gloves with buttoned cuffs. The sadness is that most of these actual items are no longer with us but I think that we have a responsibility to try and keep important things safe for future generations if we can, and to make sure we remember to tell their stories so their history stays alive. Last summer two beautiful and elegant Leeds Cream-ware sauce boats came my way out of a clear blue sky. I didn’t know their history but I have since discovered that they had been in my grandmother’s family for many years and for some reason, around the time of the second world war, she gave them away to my godmother’s family. Perhaps they said they liked them, or maybe they were all that remained of a full dinner service and my grandmother didn’t want them anymore, but for whatever reason their story went with them, and when my godmother’s house was cleared and sold she left instructions to make sure they were returned to me. These sauce boats are so beautifully made that the skill and detail, especially around the handles is, quite honestly, astonishing.  When my grandmother owned them they would probably have been kept in a cupboard in their kitchen and brought out once a week for Sunday lunch, filled to the brim with gravy, hollandaise sauce or custard. I don’t know what happened to them in the intervening years and I don't suppose I ever will, but they have come home again now and they sit in pride of place on our mantelpiece. I feel privileged to have them.