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The Rocking Horse Shop

Designers, Makers & Restorers of Beautiful Rocking Horses Since 1976

History

A Brief History of The Rocking Horse Shop

Est. 1976

Anthony Dew designed and made his first wooden rocking horse back in 1976. It was just him and his wife then, working out of the garage of their house under the company name ‘The Rocking Horse Winner’. In 1984 they bought an old butcher's shop in Holme upon Spalding Moor and ‘The Rocking Horse Shop’ was born.

 

That same year Anthony’s book ‘Making Rocking Horses’ was published by David & Charles, along with designs for a Large traditional carved rocking-horse, a Small on bows and a Toddler’s rocker. Soon the company had two employees and were selling ten different plans with Timber packs and all the accessories.

 

In 1991 the company moved to Fangfoss in the East Riding of Yorkshire and built larger, purpose-designed rocking-horse workshops and showroom. By 2011 we were making and restoring hundreds of rocking-horses, as well as selling plans and accessories, and we made ‘Bigger Bertie’. At 28 feet long and nearly 15 feet high, Bigger Berte was the World’s Largest Rocking Horse and attracted widespread media attention.

As part of the company's Millennium celebrations, The Guild of Rocking Horse Makers was conceived as a group for like-minded people to promote and encourage the traditional craft of rocking-horse making. The guild still runs today, exchanging information and connecting members across the globe.

 

The Rocking Horse Shop is family run and continues to build on the successes of the past. As well as hand-crafted finished rocking-horses, we publish a wide range of plans, from weekend projects to fully-carved rocking-horses, and the company continues to grow from strength to strength. The core of the business remains firmly with traditional hand-skills, but we do embrace new technologies where appropriate.

Anthony continues to be a good friend to the business, providing his many years of experience to support the team as we look towards our Golden Jubilee in 2026. He is currently working on a new revised edition of his comprehensive how-to-do-it book ‘The Complete Rocking Horse Maker’ as well as a book that goes deep and personal into the history of rocking-horses and The Rocking Horse Shop. Look out for these two new books, scheduled for publication in Autumn 2021.