Tonight we have another example of World War One crested china, this particularly magnificent piece is in the form of a miniature howitzer:Designs such as this were very popular in the Great War and remain some of the more sought after pieces of crested china amongst collectors today. Although Goss were the biggest of the companies producing these pieces, other factories produced cheaper alternatives and this howitzer was manufactured by Arcadian:The howitzer has a transfer printed crest for the seaside town of Filey on one wheel:This seems entirely appropriate as these crested pieces of china really became popular as seaside souvenirs in the run up to the outbreak of war in 1914. Indeed it never travelled far in the hundred years since it was made as I found it just down the coast in an antique shop in Scarborough. The opposite wheel just has the spoke effect, but picked out in gold:Note the blocks around the edges of the wheels, in the real howitzer these were used to help prevent the gun from digging in on soft terrain when it was fired, acting much like a caterpillar track. Sadly this piece has suffered some damage at some point and the barrel has broken off just above the breach block and then been repaired, happily the repair is a neat one and the gun still looks the part:This particular design appears to have been popular and I have found a number of identical models online, but bearing different crests for different towns. These pieces are getting harder to find, and even though it is damaged this example retains the charm it had when new. It is currently sat on my mantelshelf in pride of place, making me smile every time I pass by.