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Bath tap unit
  • Bath tap unit
    Nelson Dawson, born 1859 - died 1941
  • Enlarge image

Bath tap unit

  • Place of origin:

    London (made)

  • Date:

    1900 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Nelson Dawson, born 1859 - died 1941 (designer and maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Copper and brass

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Greenlands Staff College

  • Museum number:

    CIRC.191 to N-1963

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This bath tap unit was installed in Greenlands, a country house near Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire. The owner was William Frederick Danvers Smith, 1st Viscount Hambledon. He was a senior partner in the firm of W.H. Smith & Sons and commissioned this design from Nelson Dawson (1859-1942), who also supplied several designs for Smith’s.

Dawson’s design for this bath unit, which he made in his workshops, is in the collections of the Word and Image Department (Museum no. E.717-1976) and is dated 1900. Greenlands is now a civil service staff college but the library still retains other fittings designed by Dawson.

Physical description

Bath tap unit of white metal, (possibly Britannia metal), copper and brass.

Place of Origin

London (made)


1900 (made)


Nelson Dawson, born 1859 - died 1941 (designer and maker)

Materials and Techniques

Copper and brass


Height: 27.9 cm, Width: 42.0 cm maximum, Length: 49.5 cm, Weight: 30 kg

Object history note

Arts and Crafts Exhibition RF.2002/1174
Nelson Dawson Exhibition RF.2006/662

Descriptive line

Bath tap unit, England, around 1900, designed by Nelson Dawson

Labels and date

BADA 2004 Exhibition label:
Copper, silver and britannia metal, England, around 1900, designed by Nelson Dawson (1859-1942)
A feature of the domestic metalwork collection is that much of it was designed primarily for use rather than just for display. These bath taps, were made for William Frederick Danvers Smith (1868-1928), 2nd Viscount Hambleden, who was a senior partner in WH Smith and Sons. They were installed in his house, Greenlands, near Henley-on-Thames (now a management training college). Dawson was one of England's most important arts and crafts designers. His drawing for these taps, dated May 1900, is also in the V&A.
CIRC.191-1963 [March 2004]


Brass; Britannia metal; Copper




Metalwork Collection

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