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Two books on Carlton Ware were published in 2012. See our Publications page for details.
April 2014
A tribute to all who died & suffered as a consequence of World War 1.

This is the fourth of a series of articles featuring Carlton China models relating to the conflict.

Part Four - Battleships

Wiltshaw & Robinson made no fewer than ten models of ships associated with WW1. They are regarded as fairly accurate representations, though the names found printed on them were inconsistent and often incorrect. Presumably there was uncertainty on the works as to what was what and most customers would have been none the wiser!

Before we show you the battleships of the Carlton China 'fleet' here are two naval recruitment posters.


WW1 recruitment posters for the Royal Naval Division and the Royal Naval Canadian Volunteer Reserve.

Models of six battleships were made in Carlton China. Each is shown separately below along with a picture of the vessel on which they might have been based. Identification has not been easy, not least because the size of the British Fleet at the time was huge and the ships underwent various modifications as the war progressed.

Indefatigable Class battlecruiser

The Carlton China model below is possibly based on the Indefatigable Class of battlecruiser, the first of which was launched in 1909.

Carlton China model of a battleship.
Carlton China model of a battleship possibly based on
Indefatigable Class of battlecruiser.
Programme cover for the arrival of the Australian Fleet in Sydney October 1913.
Programme cover for the arrival of the Australian Fleet
in Sydney October 1913.
HMAS Australia
Indefatigable Class of battlecruiser - HMAS Australia.

Torpedo Boat

The Carlton China model below is possibly based on a torpedo boat, which launched self propelled torpedoes at much larger battleships.  These eventually evolved into the modern destroyer.

Carlton China model of a torpedo boat.
Left - WW1 torpedo boat.  Right - Carlton China model possibly based on a torpedo boat.
WW1 postcard - Firing a 10,000 yard torpedo from deck.
WW1 postcard - Firing a 10,000 yard torpedo from deck.

Carlton China model of a battlecruiser.
Carlton China model of a battlecruiser.
Found named HMS Australia, HMS Canada & HMS Marlborough.


Iron Duke Class battleship.


The model on the right, incorrectly named HMS Australia, is most likely to have been based on HMS Iron Duke launched in 1912.

Other incorrect names found on this model were HMS Canada and HMS Marlborough.

On all of the Carlton China models of battleships the foredecks are shortened.

HMS Iron Duke.
HMS Iron Duke battleship on which the Carlton China model above might have been based.

Carlton China model of a battlecruiser.
Carlton China model of a battlecruiser.
Found named HMS Queen Elizabeth, HMS Tiger & HMS Lion.


Lion Class battleship.


The model on the right looks as though it was modelled on the Lion Class battleship. The first, HMS Lion, was launched in 1910 and commissioned in 1912.  At this time they were the largest warships in the world.

Though this model is found correctly named HMS Lion it was also erroneously named HMS Queen Elizabeth and HMS Tiger.

HMS Lion battlecruiser.
HMS Lion battlecruiser, launched in 1910 on which the Carlton China model above might have been based.

Carlton China model of a battlecruiser.
Carlton China model of a battlecruiser.
Found named HMS Tiger & HMS Lion.


Cressy Class battleship.


The model on the right is thought to be based on the Cressy Class cruiser, a class of six armoured cruisers built for the Royal Navy around 1900.

They were obsolescent by 1914 and crewed by inexperienced reservists. In September 1914 three were sunk by a German U boat in a single action.

This model was incorrectly named HMS Lion and HMS Tiger. Below is a picture of HMS Hogue one of the Cressy Class battlecruisers that was sunk.
HMS Hogue Cressy Class armoured cruiser.
HMS Hogue Cressy Class armoured cruiser on which the Carlton China model above might have been based.

Below is German postcard celebrating U-boat U9 sinking HMS Hogue, HMS Cressy and HMS Aboukir in one mission on 22 Sept 1914.


German postcard celebrating U-boat U9 sinking of three British battleships on 22 September 1914 in one mission.

Carlton China model of an unidentified battleship.</
Carlton China model of an unidentified battleship.
Found named HMS War Spite, HMS Princess Royal,
HMS Iron Duke, HMS Renown & HMS Inflexible.

Mystery model.



The sixth Carlton China model of a battleship is shown on the right, but I have not been able to identify it.

This model is found incorrectly named HMS War Spite, HMS Princess Royal, HMS Iron Duke, HMS Renown and HMS Inflexible.

If you think you know on what it might be based do let me know. It has four guns fore and two guns aft.  Could it be based on a German ship?



The Carlton China Fleet.

To recap, below are the six Carlton China models of battleships shown together though not to scale.


Carlton China models of WW1 battleships.

To be continued....

In the next article we look at the four remaining Carlton China models of ships relating to the war.

We begin Part 5 with RMS Lusitania, a British Ocean liner. She was holder of the Blue Riband and briefly the World's biggest ship but in 1915 was sunk by a German submarine with great loss of life.


Other Articles in this series on Carlton China models relating to WW1.

Part 1    Men in the Military.
Part 2    The role that women played.
Part 3    Weapons of war.
Part 5    Other ships.
Part 6    Submarines.
Part 7    Tanks.
Part 8    Armoured vehicles.
Part 9    Aeroplanes.
Part 10  Airships.
Part 11  Military Caps & Hats.
Part 12  Miscellaneous.


© Harvey Pettit 2014.
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