<<< Back to auction page

Spring Reading Carriage & Heavy Horse Sale

 On Wednesday 7th March 2018

 Dunton Reading Wagon

A magnificent and original Gypsy Wagon built in 1914 by Dunton & Sons of Reading

A truly magnificent and original Dunton & Sons Gypsy Wagon. This wonderful Reading wagon was built in 1914 and is possibly the finest Dunton wagon ever built. It is breath-taking in its proud appearance with inter-rib carvings, louvered shutters, carved pan box, carved steps and the most ornate and heavily butterfly-chamfered underworks being chamfered on top as well as below each cross member. Only a handful of the very finest Dunton wagons had this double chamfering. The four axle stubs are stamped with the date 7/1914, as well as a crown, and the word ‘warranted’.
The underworks are in the traditional straw yellow ground with endless lining in dark red and green re-created from the original. All the original fittings survive to the exterior including cut glass amber knobs and handles, nickel silver fittings including grab handles, lamp holders and lamps, brake wheel, front stays on the underworks, wheel frets and the Dunton & Sons stamped wheel nuts. The wagon has been restored back to how it was when first built by Dunton’s in 1914, the body painted in dark red with all gold leaf carvings and gold leaf panel scrolls copied from the original, chamfers and sill carvings picked out in red and green, the whole lined out in white. All the window borders are finely etched and cut ruby glass, and the mollicroft roof has matching ruby glass which is totally original and a unique and rare feature of this Dunton wagon.
The interior furniture is all bow-fronted mahogany in its original state, just French polished, all the carvings & window boards still retain the original gold leaf applied by Dunton, and all brass fittings and amber grab handles to the interior are original. The roof has the rare original panelled design over the usual match boarding in between the chamfered ribs, only seen on one other Dunton wagon, all of which retain the original artwork. Another very rare original feature to this wagon, not seen on any other Dunton wagons before, is the bevelled-edged mirrors to the seat backs, the bed place and the fireplace over-mantel. All have the wonderful original cut and etched mirrors showing vases with fruit and leaves. The bow-fronted china cupboard also has cut and engraved grapes and vines. Even the red velvet curtains with gold bobble edging are original, having been professionally cleaned and repaired by a specialized conservator. The buttoned seat cushions have been
copied from the originals to match the curtains, and all bedding is in the traditional style. A hostess-type stove is fitted and there is an original angel lamp with antique ruby cut reservoir, etched glass shade and funnel. When you enter the wagon it is like stepping back 100 years being surround by a wonderful antique feel of opulence and a rich glow of ruby red light coming through the windows and mollicroft.
This incredible Dunton Reading wagon is without doubt the finest and most original of its type and has had a no cost spared restoration and is perfect in every detail. It is featured on the front cover of the book Romany Relics and covers several pages within this publication. The Restoration chapter shows this wagon in its original state and its restoration stages from start to finish.
This is truly a once in a lifetime opportunity to own the very finest and the most original Dunton & Sons Reading wagon.
Measurements: 13ft long from front to rear porch brackets, 11ft 6ins high incl. mollicroft, approx. 5ft back wheels and approx. 3ft 6ins front wheels