Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Holland & Holland

 Holland & Holland was founded by Harris Holland (1806–96) in the year 1835.
At first the guns bore the inscription H.Holland, without an address, and it is probable that these were built in the trade to his design. It is not known when Harris started his own manufacturing but it is estimated to be in the 1850s. This start makes him very unusual among the London Best makers, as others such as Purdey, Boss, Lang and Lancaster had apprenticed with Joseph Manton, while others such as Beesley, Grant and Atkin apprenticed with Purdey or Boss.
In 1883 Holland and Holland entered the trials organized by the magazine The Field, and won all of the rifle categories. This set a new standard of excellence for the competition among English gunmakers. In 1885 patents were granted to Holland and Holland for their Paradox gun, a shotgun with rifling in the front two inches of the barrel.
In 1908, they patented the detachable lock feature with small lever, for sidelock shotguns. The last major development in the evolution of the sidelock side-by-side gun occurred in 1922, when the H&H assisted-opening mechanism was patented. This gun, the self-opening Royal side-by-side, has been hugely influential in gun-making throughout the world.
In the period after World War II, under the leadership of new owner and Managing Director Malcolm Lyell, the company made sorties to India, where guns from the famous collections of the princes and maharajahs were bought back, developing an important market for second-hand pieces. In 1989, all remaining shares in H&H were bought by the French cosmetics group Chanel. Since then, the factory building, in use since 1898, has been extensively renovated and equipped with modern technology. Guns such as the Royal Over & Under or side-by-side double-barreled shotguns were improved and reintroduced, and they are available in 12, 20 and 28 bore and .410 inch. A hand-built gun from H&H can cost around GB£60,000 for a shotgun and close to GB£100,000 for some rifles, with prices roughly doubling with luxury engraving, and there is a waiting period of 2–3 years between ordering and delivery.
In the 1990s, Holland and Holland started on a major program of expansion. The company has stores ("gunrooms") in New York City and Moscow. The company's London flagship store on Bruton Street has been completely renovated and expanded.

Portrait of Harris Holland.

Harris Holland was born in 1806 in London. Although accounts of his background are somewhat sketchy, it is believed that his father was an organ builder, while Harris had a tobacco wholesale business in London. Obviously he was successful, as he was often seen at various pigeon shoots at important London clubs, as well as leasing a grouse moor in Yorkshire.
Having no children of his own, he took on his nephew Henry Holland as an apprentice in 1861. In 1867 Henry became a partner and in 1876 the name changed to Holland & Holland. Although Henry was a full partner, Harris kept strict control and was the only one who could sign a cheque until he died in 1896.

Holland and Holland Film

Just watch the film below : "How to ... dress for shooting"

Tuesday, 30 October 2012

How to...dress for shooting

"The Shooting Party" 1 The Film.

The Shooting Party is one of my favorite films. It illustrates in a sublime way, the end of an era and its illusions concerning order and civilization, based on an specific Social Order.
The Squire, played by James Mason, and its natural and authentic connection with the local inhabitants, represents the last reference of a gone sense of “oblige” and responsibility in an  alienated society. 
It announces the inevitable  decline of the landed aristocracy with the coming of the First World War. 
Many will not come back, the death duties will increase and the birth of The National Trust and its Country House scheme will become inevitable.  
Yours, Jeeves.

 "Elegiac in tone and full of muted browns and greens The Shooting Party captures the period beautifully, showing the class divide which World War One helped to break down some."

 The Shooting Party is a 1985 film directed by Alan Bridges and based on the book of the same name by Isabel Colegate. The film is set in 1913 and shows the way of life of English aristocrats, gathered for pheasant shooting and general self-indulgence. Their way of life is contrasted with the local rural poor, who serve as 'beaters', driving the game for the aristocrats to shoot.

There is a general feeling of the end of a way of life, as the characters go about their lives unaware of the coming war (World War I) and the changes it will bring.
This is the last film appearance by James Mason, who plays Sir Randolph Nettleby, the local landowner who has something of the old values. Edward Fox as Lord Gilbert Hartlip represents the newer types who don't have the same solid beliefs: he gets into a competition over who is the best shot, despite his host's disapproval.

The film was reviewed positively by the eminent critic Pauline Kael. "Bridges [as can be seen also in his 1982 film The Return of the Soldier], has a special gift for these evocations of a world seen in a bell jar, and now, with Geoffrey Reeve as producer and Fred Tammes as cinematographer, he has refined his techniques. A late bloomer (he was born in 1927), Bridges goes beyond being pictorial and literary. He sharpens the novel's wry observations on the Edwardian era and at the same time infuses a sensuous sweetness into the material. On television, a novel like The Shooting Party would be a six part series, full of longueurs. Here, after we've met the key members of the party, the film puts us among actions and conversations going on simultaneously. And as the events become more intense Bridges picks up the pace and tightens the film's emotional hold on us. Actresses such as Cheryl Campbell and Judi Bowker make a stronger impression in their brief screen time than they do in their much longer stints on TV. Cheryl Campbell is at one moment a pert-faced, nosy gossip, and at the next a tantalising sensualist being caressed by her own long, wavy blond hair. It's a quicksilver performance that recalls Joan Greenwood at her most seductive. And Judi Bowker as the guileless Lady Olivia, the wife of thick-headed Lord Lilburn (Robert Hardy), looks at the camera with a direct gaze that makes her seem infinitely beautiful. When the tall, slim young barrister Lionel Stephens (Rupert Frazer), declares his love for her, you think, Of course - how could he look into her clear eyes and not imagine depths of mystery?"

James Mason as Sir Randolph Nettleby
Edward Fox as Lord Gilbert Hartlip
Dorothy Tutin as Lady Minnie Nettleby
John Gielgud as Cornelius Cardew
Gordon Jackson as Tom Harker
Cheryl Campbell as Lady Aline Hartlip
Robert Hardy as Lord Bob Lilburn
Aharon Ipalé as Sir Reuben Hergesheimer
Joris Stuyck as Count Tibor Rakassyi
Rebecca Saire as Cicely Nettleby
Sarah Badel as Ida Nettleby
Rupert Frazer as Lionel Stephens
Judi Bowker as Lady Olivia Lilburn
John J. Carney as Jarvis
Ann Castle as Lady Mildred Stamp