Today the Ken Stradling Collection celebrated its formal opening to the public at the Design Study Centre in Park Row, Bristol. The collection is unique in its broad base as a design collection covering a wide range of applied arts and design areas from the point of view of someone who is both an observant connoisseur of design but also someone closely involved in the buying and retailing of well-designed objects. The ground floor Design Study Centre will be now open to the public on Wednesdays and visits to the Collection can be arranged. For more information see our new website also launched today – – email

The Design Study Centre in Park Row, Bristol. 

The opening was well attended and Simon Timms, Chair of the Heritage Lottery Fund South West Committee was full of praise and encouragement. Left to right Colin Beales (KSC trustee), Ken Stradling, Simon Timms (HLF), Anthony Shaw (Anthony Shaw Collection). 

Classic String shelving displays a personal selection by Ken Stradling of pieces from his collection.

Pilot Boat by Sam Smith. Sam is one of Ken’s favourite makers and a number of his witty pieces form part of a light-hearted thread within the collection.

Lustre vases by Edmund Elton from the early 1900s. Lord Elton’s Sunflower Pottery was at Clevedon Court near Bristol. He was a very successful art potter in the late 19th and early 20th century. The crackle lustre glazes are one of his finest creations. The lidded piece on the right was one of the first pieces that Ken ever bought.

James Dyson’s prototype vacuum cleaner – 500 were made by Zanussi and retailed by Kleneze. The design was revised and successfully sold to a Japanese manufacturer – the V&A have just acquired one of those. Dyson made enough money to set up on his own and the rest is history as they say.

Furniture in the collection includes pieces by many major figures of the 20th century including Gio Ponti, Ernest Race, Marcel Breuer and Gordon Russell.

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