|Treasures of the Kennel Club
by Valerie Foss
This month's item is not a large imposing famous painting but it is in fact connected to one of our most famous paintings.
It was given to the Kennel Club by the late Peter Winfield, a well-known terrier man who died in 2010. He judged the Terrier Group at Crufts in 1998. Peter, who was an Honorary Member of the Kennel Club, had a great knowledge of terrier history and was very supportive of the Kennel Club Art Gallery and Library. He and his wife Frances, when they moved to Australia a few years ago, gave the Kennel Club the chain used as a show lead by Francis Redmond (the picture shows Francis Redmond on the left, with his famous Ch. Donna Fortuna on the chain lead. On the right is James C Tinne with Adam Bede) The picture is dated 1897.
Now - about the famous painting - Francis Redmond was the 4th Chairman of the Kennel Club 1922 - 1925 and he had Arthur Wardle paint 'The Totteridge Eleven' signed and dated 1897. The picture shows eleven of his famous Fox Terriers. It is a classic example of dog portraiture and was executed under the watchful eye of Francis Redmond himself.
Wardle remarked many years later that, "Mr Redmond stood over me and made me 'perfect' all his dogs, shorten their backs, lengthen their necks and muzzles, make their ears and feet smaller than they really were. None of them was half as good as in their picture."
On Redmond's death the chain was given to Captain Tudor Crosthwaite the Fox Terrier man who bequeathed "The Totteridge Eleven" painting to the Kennel Club. Crosthwaites's Kennelman carefully passed on the chain to Captain John Glover of the Hewshott Smooth Fox Terriers. Thereafter the chain was just as carefully acquired by Peter and Frances Winfield who eventually gave it to the Kennel Club. Peter Winfield had some marvellous memories of the famous Fox Terrier people whom he knew in his early years in the breed, and remembered a well-known owner and breeder Miss K. Emery who had known Francis Redmond when she was young. She said "He was very particular about breeding good fronts and feet". Ch. Donna Fortuna was considered by most as one of the greatest examples of a Smooth Fox Terrier that ever lived. She was shown consistently for five years and was never defeated, then trained for work. She spent the rest of her time with Francis Redmond's gamekeeper and on her death, she joined the famous stuffed dogs at Tring and can still be seen there to this day.
Peter Winfield only used the famous chain once and that was to show a dog called Riber Redmond at The Fox Terrier Club Ch Show. Peter thought that this dog was the best male he and Frances had ever bred and he had been saving the name for just such a dog.
The Kennel Club Art Gallery is open to all and free to visit, however an appointment is necessary. Visiting hours are Monday to Friday 9.30am-4.30pm. To book an appointment please contact the Kennel Club Art Gallery on 020 7518 1064 or email firstname.lastname@example.org