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 Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared

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Chris Sweetman

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Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared Empty
PostSubject: Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared   Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared EmptySat Mar 28, 2020 12:50 pm

Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared


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On the left is the second issue introduced in 1971 which was the replacement for the one on the right which was issued in 1960. The 1971 issue was deleted in 1985.

Both models were given the same number 1382.

The 1960 model’s pose is passive and derives from the lead casting released in 1929. It was moulded in white plastic with wonderfully replicated wing and tail feathers. These were painted black in almost wash so not to hide the feather details. The eyes were also painted black. A dusky pink colour was applied to the legs and beak. The top of the beak was overpainted in a russet-orange and this colour was applied to the web feet. The base is painted in a matt-green. The underside of the base is recessed with: BRITAINS LTD (Herald symbol) ENGLAND.

The 1971 version was moulded in white PVC plastic in a more animated pose with a slightly forward leaning stance. Although there is feather detailing it is not quiet as nicely etched as the older moulding. The model was sculptured by Ron Cameron who is credited with designing all the second series Britains zoo/wild life animals issued from the 1970’s. Paint wise the colours used and where they are applied follow the earlier version. However, the black for the wing and tail feathers was more of an overbrush just to catch the raised feather areas and applied to the base is a gloss green. The underside of the base is recessed with: (C) BRITAINS LTD 1971 MADE IN ENGLAND. Perhaps the copyright symbol is included to try and prevent the plagiarism Britains experienced with its products.

More images tomorrow.

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SUSANNE
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Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared Empty
PostSubject: Re: Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared   Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared EmptySat Mar 28, 2020 7:12 pm

Thankyou for this interesting topic Very Happy

I have never see the one to the left Shocked

Imagine that the model to the right was sculpted 91 years ago cheers

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PostSubject: Re: Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared   Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared EmptySun Mar 29, 2020 12:58 am

I love these presentations with rich informations and that helps us understanding a little more about these old figures.
These two are quite different but when differences are subtle, often one of the versions gets unnoticed. It is great to have here an expert as you are, Crhis! cheers

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PostSubject: Re: Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared   Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared EmptySun Mar 29, 2020 1:49 am

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
Thankyou for this interesting topic Very Happy

I have never see the one to the left Shocked

Imagine  that the model to the right was sculpted 91 years ago cheers

I also have never seen the left version before. It is very good

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PostSubject: Re: Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared   Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared EmptySun Mar 29, 2020 8:16 am

Great photo, Chris. I didn't realise that the old pelican is one of the Herald models. I am surprised it is, given that it was made in lead by Britains.

Both versions are still easy to find in the UK; I have quite a few. I am social distancing from my animals at the moment, but once this is over and you remind me, I am happy to send you one.
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Chris Sweetman

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PostSubject: Re: Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared   Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared EmptySun Mar 29, 2020 11:11 am

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
Thankyou for this interesting topic Very Happy

I have never see the one to the left Shocked

Imagine that the model to the right was sculpted 91 years ago cheers

I also have never seen the left version before. It is very good

Many thanks Susanne and Andreas. Glad to provide this additional information.

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Chris Sweetman

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PostSubject: Re: Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared   Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared EmptySun Mar 29, 2020 11:16 am

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
I love these presentations with rich informations and that helps us understanding a little more about these old figures.
These two are quite different but when differences are subtle, often one of the versions gets unnoticed. It is great to have here an expert as you are, Chris! cheers

Hi Roger

Until a few years ago I wasn't interested in the new poses Britains introduced from the 1970's but now I am finding it fascinating. And that these two pelican models supposedly in identical poses should be very different. Personally, I didn't notice until I got them both and suddenly realised they were indeed completely different. Pleased that you are finding this as equally interesting as I am.

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PostSubject: Re: Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared   Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared EmptySun Mar 29, 2020 11:22 am

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
Great photo, Chris. I didn't realise that the old pelican is one of the Herald models. I am surprised it is, given that it was made in lead by Britains.

Both versions are still easy to find in the UK; I have quite a few. I am social distancing from my animals at the moment, but once this is over and you remind me, I am happy to send you one.

Hi Roger

All the plastic models that originally were produced whether they began as a Herald or Britains model carried the Herald symbol. If there was a replacement mould issued from the 1970's the Herald symbol was omitted and indeed it was removed from older moulds that lasted after 1970.

Thanks for the offer Roger of a Britains lead pelican. At present I don't have any Britains hollow-cast zoo models. Like you I am limiting my time outside and at present able to work from home.

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PostSubject: Re: Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared   Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared EmptySun Mar 29, 2020 11:29 am

As promised a couple of photos:

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A silhouette of the first version issued 1960 and replaced by the second version pictured below.

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A silhouette of the second version issued 1971 and deleted in 1985.

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PostSubject: Re: Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared   Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared EmptySun Mar 29, 2020 11:37 am

Nice pelicans! The silhouette photos are especially nice and easy to see the differences.

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Chris Sweetman

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PostSubject: Re: Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared   Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared EmptyMon Mar 30, 2020 10:05 pm

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
Nice pelicans! The silhouette photos are especially nice and easy to see the differences.

Many thanks Paige. I was looking for a way to assist in these two poses identification and by accident I thought about a silhouette of each pose. It is great that these enable people to observe these differences.

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PostSubject: Re: Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared   Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared EmptyMon Mar 30, 2020 11:04 pm

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
Nice pelicans! The silhouette photos are especially nice and easy to see the differences.

Many thanks Paige. I was looking for a way to assist in these two poses identification and by accident I thought the about a silhouette of each pose. It is great that these enable people to observe these differences.

They surely do cheers

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PostSubject: Re: Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared   Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared EmptyTue Mar 31, 2020 1:28 am

Very nice pelicans Chris Applause

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PostSubject: Re: Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared   Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared EmptyTue Mar 31, 2020 7:08 am

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Very nice pelicans Chris Applause

Thank you Adam. Very Happy

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PostSubject: Re: Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared   Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared EmptyTue Mar 31, 2020 8:45 am

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
All the plastic models that originally were produced whether they began as a Herald or Britains model carried the Herald symbol. If there was a replacement mould issued from the 1970's the Herald symbol was omitted and indeed it was removed from older moulds that lasted after 1970.

Ah, I didn't realise. I thought only some Britains zoo animals had the Herald mark and others were never produced with it. I don't know why I thought that. Perhaps because few of my zoo animals have the mark or perhaps because TAW mentions only some of the zoo animals as "Herald version". That doesn't make sense then, I suppose, because they all initially had the mark.

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Thanks for the offer Roger of a Britains lead pelican. At present I don't have any Britains hollow-cast zoo models. Like you I am limiting my time outside and at present able to work from home.

I caused some confusion here. I don't have a lead pelican. I was offering the later plastic pelican to Susanne and Andreas, because they said they liked it. You can have one too, but you already have one Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared   Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared EmptyWed Apr 01, 2020 11:20 pm

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
All the plastic models that originally were produced whether they began as a Herald or Britains model carried the Herald symbol. If there was a replacement mould issued from the 1970's the Herald symbol was omitted and indeed it was removed from older moulds that lasted after 1970.

Ah, I didn't realise. I thought only some Britains zoo animals had the Herald mark and others were never produced with it. I don't know why I thought that. Perhaps because few of my zoo animals have the mark or perhaps because TAW mentions only some of the zoo animals as "Herald version". That doesn't make sense then, I suppose, because they all initially had the mark.

Hi Roger I should have said that as the Herald symbol is quiet large it use is limited to figures with bases and larger figures where it can be fitted to the underside. When the Herald company fully merged with Britains in 1959 Britains originally used the trade name 'Herald' for the plastic production as Britains were still making figures in lead. When the first consumer catalogues were released, starting in 1965, Herald was solely used for the non Swoppet / Eyes Right soldiers and western figures. This is even when the farm / zoo figures still used the Herald symbol where possible until 1970. Perhaps TAW is trying to make a distinction between pre-1970 animal figures and post-1970 animal production. Strangely, the zoo figures were designed by Britains, the original Herald company never produced zoo animals, but some of these have the 'Herald' symbol. All a bit confusing.

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
Thanks for the offer Roger of a Britains lead pelican. At present I don't have any Britains hollow-cast zoo models. Like you I am limiting my time outside and at present able to work from home.

I caused some confusion here. I don't have a lead pelican. I was offering the later plastic pelican to Susanne and Andreas, because they said they liked it. You can have one too, but you already have one Very Happy

Many thanks for the offer for the 2nd version plastic pelicans Roger. I have a few myself including a slightly different pose from the one posted. It is certainly a kind gesture to offer one to both Susanne and Andreas.

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PostSubject: Re: Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared   Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared EmptyThu Apr 02, 2020 1:36 am

Hi Roger

Apologies my message appears lost in my reply above.

I should have said that as the Herald symbol is quite large its use is limited to figures with bases and larger figures where it can be fitted to the underside. When the Herald company fully merged with Britains in 1959 Britains originally used the trade name 'Herald' for the plastic production as Britains were still making figures in lead. When the first consumer catalogues were released, starting in 1965, Herald was solely used for the non Swoppet / Eyes Right soldiers and western figures. This is even when the farm / zoo figures still used the Herald symbol where possible until 1970. Perhaps TAW is trying to make a distinction between pre-1970 animal figures and post-1970 animal production. Strangely, the zoo figures were designed by Britains, the original Herald company never produced zoo animals, but some of these were issued with the 'Herald' symbol. All a bit confusing.

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PostSubject: Re: Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared   Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared EmptyThu Apr 02, 2020 2:15 am

Thanks for this information, Chris. I had indeed noticed that all my zoo animals with Herald symbol have a base (except for the sitting polar bear) and wondered whether this was just by chance or not.
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PostSubject: Re: Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared   Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared EmptyFri Apr 10, 2020 11:20 am

Thanks everyone for your patience whilst waiting for more images. I wasn't satisfied with my first photo session so I had another go.


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Just to recap: On the left is the original version which was issued in 1960.
On the right is the second issue which replaced the original version in 1971. This version was deleted in 1985.


Both models were given the same number 1382.


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This is the original Britains Pelican, beak open, number 1382. Introduced in 1960 and replaced by the 2nd version in 1971.

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This is the second version of the Britains Pelican, beak open.
Still numbered 1382 it replaced the original version in 1971 and was deleted from the zoo/wildlife range in 1985.


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Here are two 2nd issue models showing moulding variations and also differences in paint application and colour.

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A group of pelicans has many collective nouns, including a "brief", "pod", "pouch", "scoop", and "squadron" so take your pick!

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A group of 2nd version pelicans with the original version at the back.

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PostSubject: Re: Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared   Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared EmptyFri Apr 10, 2020 12:43 pm

Perfect 2nd photo session! You have pods of them, Chris! I can see also that pelicans were very popular among vintage companies. Timpo, Johillco and many other brands released their own versions.

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PostSubject: Re: Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared   Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared EmptySat Apr 11, 2020 12:37 am

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
Perfect 2nd photo session! You have pods of them, Chris!  I can see also that pelicans were very popular among vintage companies. Timpo, Johillco and many other brands released their own versions.

Thank you Roger. I am really happy how this 2nd photo session turned out. One of the reasons why Pelicans were popular among vintage brands is that there has been a resident population of them at St. James Park in London and they were represented in zoo collections. Here is the link to St. James Park:

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PostSubject: Re: Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared   Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared EmptySat Apr 11, 2020 2:53 am

Thanks to your link of St. James' Park, I've red something very interesting related with a kind of pelicans cold war. Laughing
I also may have now an explanation why most of these pelicans seem to be inspired in Dalmatian pelicans instead of great white pelicans as we use to identify them.
First pelicans on St. James' Park were gifted by a Russian embassator and they were Dalmatian pelicans. The Britains lead version, from 1929, has the bill/pouch colours of a Dalmatian in breeding season. The most recent plastic version has the head feathers also very similar to the Dalmatian animal. Later, a North American embassator offered to the park brown pelicans but they were unsuccessful contrarily to the "Russian" birds. It caused apparently a small diplomatic confrontation but the explanation was rather simple. Brown pelicans are more adapted to salthy waters while Dalmatian are freshwater birds. Later, American white pelicans were given and the American mistake was corrected. Great white pelicans can also be found but that was a later addition. study

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PostSubject: Re: Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared   Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared EmptySat Apr 11, 2020 9:29 am

Hi Roger

Thanks for all this information but looking at this diagram the closest species the Britains Pelican is ......

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The one in the middle.  Laughing

I will let the experts debate and discuss. Very Happy

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PostSubject: Re: Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared   Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared EmptySat Apr 11, 2020 10:50 am

Great chart! Pity that the new world pelicans are not included too.
I believe your focus goes to the black colour found on the rump of the Australian pelican. The first plastic version have completely black wings, something relatively common in vintage company birds, maybe they decided to give contrasting colors to stucked wings to turn this element more conspicuous. I know vintage figures were more leaned to follow a certain stereotype and didn't care too much with species. The figure I was comparing with the Dalmatian pelican, it was the lead Britains we can find in this link. :) You are right, I will let it to our experts, I was just trying to link the fact that the first Britains model was modeled when Dalmatian pelicans were the species present in St. James' Park.

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PostSubject: Re: Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared   Britains Pelicans, beak open - 1st and 2nd editions compared EmptySat Apr 11, 2020 11:05 am

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
Great chart! Pity that the new world pelicans are not included too.
I believe your focus goes to the black colour found on the rump of the Australian pelican. The first plastic version have completely black wings, something relatively common in vintage company birds, maybe they decided to give contrasting colors to stucked wings to turn this element more conspicuous. I know vintage figures were more leaned to follow a certain stereotype and didn't care too much with species. The figure I was comparing with the Dalmatian pelican, it was the lead Britains we can find in this link. :) You are right, I will let it to our experts, I was just trying to link the fact that the first Britains model was modeled when Dalmatian pelicans were the species present in St. James' Park.

Hi Roger

Fully agree that old lead Pelican from Britains is definitely painted as a Dalmatian.

On the link if you click on the image it enlarges and you will also see arrows on the right and left.

Clicking on the right arrow takes you to the New World Pelicans and clicking the left arrow takes you to the Flamingo family. This latter may be useful when we take a look at Britains Flamingo. Click left again and we arrive at the Stork family again very useful as Britains had a Stork in their zoo line up. Nice that they use a human figure for size and I might pinch this idea for the next time I am on a photo mission!

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STS Forum  :: Animal toy figures reviews and discussions :: Vintage Companies (Plastic, rubber, lead, composition, masse...) :: BRITAINS and UK companies-
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