Silver dinner service presented to famous son of St Helens is up for auction

This silver dinner service presented to Peter Greenall is up for auction and expected to raise up to £15,000

Peter Greenall as seen in a portrait by Spindler in St Helens Town Hall. (Image courtesy Dr Tom Preston)

First published in News
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A SILVER dinner service presented to Peter Greenall by the people of St Helens is expected to realise up to £15,000 when it goes to auction next Wednesday.

The William 1V soup tureen and cover, with a set of four entree dishes covers and handles, four sauce tureens with covers and pair of shaped opal serving dishes and a pair of salvers will be sold at Dreweatts & Bloomsbury Auctions, Donnington Priory near Newbury, Berkshire.

Peter Greenall was responsible for much of the towns’ development during the early 19th Century. Peter, the second son of landowner and brewer Edward Greenall, managed his father’s breweries.

He also laid water pipes to people’s homes, instigated the formation of the first building society in the area and house building, became grand master of St Helens and was prominent in the creation of the St Helens and Runcorn Gap Railway in 1830.

His involvement in what was to become Pilkington Brothers glassworks was significant..He held only three of the eleven shares in the partnership. His two brothers-in-law, who had reluctantly forsaken the prosperous wine and spirit business, held the rest.

His influence at the Warrington bank of Parr, Lyon, and Greenall saved the struggling firm from going under before it had grown strong enough to survive unaided. By 1842, at the depth of the worst depression of the century, the overdraft had reached £20,000, when all eleven shares were valued at only £22,600.

A confirmed Tory, Peter Greenall contested one of the Wigan borough seats unsuccessfully in 1837, but he was returned in 1841 and used his influence as an MP to get the St Helens Waterworks Bill through parliament in 1844 and, in 1845, the St Helens Improvement Bill which led to the town’s first effective local government.

He died before the age of 50 and on the day of his funeral at St Helens Parish Church shops were closed as a mark of respect.

The dinner service with makers mark ‘RG’ is engraved with the motto, I Soar, the arms of GREENALL, and Presented to Peter Greenall Esquire by the Inhabitants of St Helens and Neighbourhood As a token of their Esteem for his private worth and of Gratitude for his Public Services.

The auctioneers’ estimate for Lot 734 is £10,000-15,000.

The items can be viewed from Sunday to Tuesday, February 22-25 at Donnington Priory. Online bidding will be available via

Comments (1)

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10:50am Tue 18 Feb 14

jumperr says...

It seems has we could do with somebody with he's drive back at the reins!
It seems has we could do with somebody with he's drive back at the reins! jumperr
  • Score: 0

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