At Cheltenham Art Gallery & Museum Arts and Crafts Museum


New Ashendene Press display at The Wilson

New Ashendene Press display at The Wilson

'For my own pleasure and amusement': CH St John Hornby and the Ashendene Press

June 2016 - November 2016

A new selection of exquisite books from the Emery Walker Library made by the third great private press of the early 20th century is featured in The Wilson's gallery of archival material, The Paper Store. Also featured in the gallery are works by Arts and Crafts Movement designers and artists Ernest Gimson, Sidney Barnsley, Freda Derrick and Eric Sharpe. 

The Ashendene Press was a truly private press. It was founded by CH St John Hornby (1867–1946) in 1895 to produce books for himself, his family and  friends. It employed only one pressman and compositor at a time, so much of the work was done by Hornby and his family. From 1895 to 1935 the press produced 40 books and several minor pieces.

The Ashendene Press worked with many of the finest craftspeople and artists of the day. Hornby became friends with many of the members of the Arts and Crafts Movement, and maintained a friendship with Emery Walker throughout his life. The collection includes several of the small, personal pieces produced by the press. The display charts the life of the press, from the humble beginnings of a self-taught amateur to one of the most respected presses of the Private Press Movement.

Also featured are displays from our local history and Wilson Family Collections.

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