Valuations Information

A Special member of staff

Lady_Hamilton_Hotel_-_LobbyStep into the reception of any World class hotel and you will be invariably greeted at the desk by an attractive young woman or handsome young man, always eager to help and make your stay as pleasant as possible, in the hope that you will visit them again or recommend the hotel to family and friends, was the room comfortable, the service and food good, all questions to make your stay as pleasant as possible. The facilities vary from hotel to hotel; some rely on Old World charm with a magnificent location, others modern and stylist, it’s a very competitive market.

Read more: A Special member of staff

Bibliography - Richard Hunter

Printed copies of all articles are available on request for a small charge. To request copies please send your full name and address along with the title(s) of the article and number of copies required via the contacts page here.
I'll advise you of the cost of postage etc via email before dispatch.

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by P.N.ThomasPublished in the United Kingdom
by Waine Research Publications, ISBN 0 905 184 16 5


by Jens Riise Kristenseen
Published in Denmark by Skib Forlag ISBN 87 90374 17 7


Articles & Other Items Published on the subject of
Richard Hunter


Autumn Issue
"Use your Heads " page 66 to 69/82 ( line illustrations only )

The House magazine of the Furness Withy Group, Winter Issue
" Figureheads " page 14 & 15 ( line illustrations only )1987

International Maritime Magazine October issue
" Figureheads to the Trade " page 26 & 27 ( photos & Line illustrations )

1987 issue
" The collection of Naval Figureheads at Portsmouth "
page 33 to 35 ( line illustrations only )



International Maritime Magazine
April issue
" British Naval Figureheads " page 24 to 26 (photos & Line illustrations )

Quarterly magazine of the Marine Society, Summer issue
" Training Ship Figureheads " page 85 to 87 ( photos )

"COUNTRY LIFE" June 9th 1988
" Taking their Bows " page 287 & 286 ( photos )



The House magazine of the Furness Withy Group, " figureheads "

Newsletter Number 16
Spring Issue " Figureheads in London " page 11 to 14 ( photos )

Number 10
May issue " New life for Old Heads " page 11 & 12 ( photos )



Vintage Restoration magazine number 9 July/August issue
" Figures from Valhalla " page 66 to 69 ( full colour /B&W photos )

May/June Volume X Number 3 issue USA publication
" New Heads for Old Ships " page 8 to 11 ( photos )

Newsletter of Lloyds of London Employees Number 96 December issue
" The one-eyed man "s Lookout " page 6 ( photos )

Newsletter of the Warrior Association Issue number 25 Winter
" Figureheads " back page ( line illustrations )



Magazine of Australia "s Maritime Museum
Number 38 Autumn issue
" Finding and Recreating Figureheads " page 14 to 16 ( Photos )



A Journal of Record issue number 67 January.
" Figureheads of Queen Victoria " page 207 to 209 ( photos )

Scotland "s Magazine June issue,
" Saved from their sinking ships Ahoy there " page 16 & 17
( full colour & B/W photos )



Issue 12 October/November issue
" The Figurehead " page 18 & 19 ( full colour photos )



The Journal of the TS "Mercury Old Boys Association 1999 Edition.
" The Figurehead of HMS GANNET " page 18 to 20 ( photo )

" Chipping away at Victoria "s secrets "
Thursday 23rd September 1999 page 18

A Journal of Record issue number 100 October 1999.
" Kings of Europe a Heritage in Wood " page 118 to 121 ( photos )



Journal of the National Maritime Historical Society of the USA
No 94 Autumn " Victoria Restored "
page 32 & 33 ( Full Colour & B/W Photos )

the magazine of Wales and the Borders
" World Queen Victoria be amused "
March 2000 page 12 & 13 (illustration & B/W photos )

" Can you figure it out "
Letter to Editor JULY 2000 page 47

Tyneside "s Heritage magazine, Issue number 13 Spring 2000,
" Figuring out life of a carving " page 4-5 ( B&W photos )

A Journal of Record,
October 2000 issue number 112
News item on restoration of
Queen Victoria Figurehead ( with B/W Photo )



July issue Vol 6 number 1
" Spirit of the Seas " page 176 to 177 ( full colour photos )

Magazine of the National Wood carvers Association of the USA,
Vol 48 number 6 November/Dec
" Victoria the restoration " page 62 to 65 ( Full colour & B/W photos )



Journal of the International Wood Collectors Society,
(USA) Vol 55 number 3 March issue
" Restoring Figurehead of 19th Century British Vessel " page 10 to 12 (photos)

The Friday Review 8th March.
" Obituaries " Jack Whitehead ( Photo )



Volume 24 number 8 AUGUST 2003
" Ship-on-Shore " Sheerness Kent. ( photos )

Tuesday November 18th 2003,
" One the trail of Maritime city "s lost figureheads " letter to the editor,
(copy with one B/W photo )

Volume 24 number 12 DECEMBER 2003
" Letters to the Editor "
" Ship-on-Shore " Sheerness Kent (three B/W photos )


Printed copies of all articles are available on request for a small charge. To request copies please send your full name and address along with the title(s) of the article and number of copies required via the contacts page here. You will be advised of the cost via email before dispatch.Small Figurehead logo



Professional Figurehead Valuations

Jenny Lind Figurehead Richard Hunter has an International reputation as the leading authority on the subject of Naval and Merchant Ships Figureheads, with a wealth of knowledge built up over 40 years of research and study in to the field of Ships Figureheads and Maritime Woodcarvings, Richard is able to provide confidential advice and information as to the authenticity of figureheads in both private and public ownership.

Past and current clients include the Maritime Departments of the three principal Auction Houses in the United Kingdom, Sotheby's, Christie's and Bonham's plus a number of independent dealers and private owners throughout the World.

If you require advice as to the authenticity of a carving or its value for re-sale, including insurance valuation please write in the first instance with more details of the carving. Contact me here, and I can advise you further. 

Richard Hunter,
Figurehead Historian.

Professional Figurehead Restoration

Over the past twenty years Richard Hunter has become increasingly involved in a number of important Figurehead restoration projects around the world, including the replication of lost original Figureheads. Working closely with traditional woodcarvers in the United Kingdom, Germany, France and the United States of America, the art of Figurehead and Maritime Carving is not lost.  With highly detailed research work and the right craftsman it’s still possible in this modern day and age to have a traditional figurehead carved,  however for Richard it’s the survival of  original figureheads and their safekeeping that’s most important to him.

Over the years so many fine looking Figureheads have been lost due to apathy and neglect. Important and valuable relics of the world’s rich maritime heritage have been allowed to just simply rot away; the catalogue of lost carvings grows each year!

Conservation, restoration and at times just a refurbishment can help hold back the advancing tide of time, and need not be too expensive. With his unique understanding and detailed knowledge of the subject, Richard has been able to bring back to life a number of important and valuable Figureheads for both private and public owners, including Maritime Museums, The Royal Navy and many other corporate and private owners.

The market value of original ships figureheads has increased remarkably over the past 5 or 6 years both in the United Kingdom and the USA, what was once dismissed as Folk Art now has a value in it’s own right, at the same time visitors to Maritime Museums and other related collections around the World are increasingly appreciating the significance of Figureheads as an important part of our Maritime and Naval heritage, Children in particular find them fascinating, as they bring alive the romance of the sea,  one of the few objects from  the vessel to have survived,  with it’s own history and persona.

The size of restoration projects already undertaken by Richard and his colleague Phil Hudson of Dartmouth in South Devon varies considerably from small merchant Figureheads of around three feet high to vast Naval Figureheads standing ten feet and more, each one is given the same care and attention to detail, with a full pictorial report of before and after views.

Please see here for details of completed restorations...

About the Figurehead Archives

Photographic Collection

Around 45,000 historic black and white prints and post-cards from the Early 1900’s both Merchant and NavaCollection of Figurehead Photosl, showing Ships Figureheads on and off the bow.

Around 6,000 full colour prints showing figureheads in museums and collections both private and public around the world, 3,000 full colour slides from around the World.

The Printed Word

Over 800 books and publications on the subject of Ships Figureheads from around the world, including an extensive collection of original magazine and newspaper articles and cuttings from 1850 to the present day.


With the help of this archive and related material it is possible to research the history of individual carvings both Merchant and Naval, to date a number of Figureheads previously thought to be unknown have been given back it’s true identity.

From the Maritime Museum of the Altantic - Nova Scotia. Canada.

“In 1971 a figurehead from Parrsboro was acquired by the Maritime Museum, the identity of the vessel from which it came from was a mystery, however in June Research Reports1991 the Museum received a letter from Richard Hunter of England, requesting information on the figureheads in it’s collection, after a short time the Curator of Collections Marven Moore had an interesting letter back, with the following comment...

“I was very interested in your carving M71.31.1 (museum accession number) you don’t have a name on this figurehead, however I have within my archives an old back and white print showing this carving with the name “R.B. Porter” during the time it was owned by a local family in Parrsboro, armed with this information it was possible to find that the carving had been taken from the Brig of 1857 and lost in 1860”

This is only one of a number of Figureheads given back it’s true identity it is possible with the help of the archive is research individual carving, with the help of a Figurehead Report, details of such reports can be given on request.

Future of the Archives

Richard Hunter has written a large number of articles on the subject of Ships Figureheads for both magazines and newspapers around the world, and has lectured on the subject at the following locations.

The National Maritime Museum, LONDON

The Town Docks Museum, HULL

Plus several maritime and historical clubs and associations around the United Kingdom, with the help of slides and models of Figureheads taken from the Archives.

In January 2000 Awarded the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust Travelling Fellowship, in the Sir James Knott Award category, for Maritime projects from applicants from the North East of the Untied Kingdom, under the project heading:

“Figureheads a lost art, rediscovery and appreciation”

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