Allan Blackburn column: Rare Santa is my pride and joy

Allan Blackburn
Allan Blackburn

With Christmas only a week away now I want to share my favourite Christmas antique with you.

It is a very rare Father Christmas.

It’s absolutely beautiful and it’s mine!

I found him in a shop in the Cotswolds a few years ago and I fell in love with him on sight.

Truly, he is the most incredible collectable I’ve ever bought.

Let me tell you about him.

He has a porcelain face and looks exactly how Father Christmas should look, if you know what I mean.

His expression and features are how I imagined Father Christmas would look, when I was a child.

He is soft-bodied, has a lovely long soft beard and has (as you would expect) a red hat and coat.

He stands about one foot tall and is on a stick.

I remember picking him up and thinking he was perfect.

I asked the shopkeeper exactly what it was and he said he knew very little about it, other than that it was musical.

He turned him and let me hold the stick.

Before my very eyes, the Santa started turning round and beautiful music began to play.

It was magical. I simply had to have him!

They didn’t know a lot more about him other than he was in good working order, but I knew immediately that he was German and possibly made by one of the Heubachs.

They were famous in 
the early 1900s for making small bisque dolls and soft-bodied dolls with porcelain faces.

I think he’s easily 100 years old and if I had to be specific I’d say made in about 1910.

I know now that it is very rare.

I had never seen one like it before that day and even though I’ve kept my eyes peeled, I have never seen one since.

There are lots of collectors of Father Christmases out there so it may be that one of our readers has something similar but for me, my Father Christmas is very special.

When he comes out of the loft every year, we put him next to our tree,and Christmas in the Blackburn household begins.