Vintage Anglepoise lamps



2015-06-26 10:30:53

Vintage Anglepoise lamps are the first type of balanced-arm lamps, designed in 1932 by George Carwardine.

Background and Description

George Carwardine was a British car designer, specialising in vehicle suspension systems. He took a new concept from this world, and brought it into the world of lamps.

He achieved his patent in 1932 and manufactured the first Anglepoise lamp himself. In 1934, overwhelmed with interest, he went into business with the Terry Spring Company in Redditch, England. Terry’s thenceforth manufactured and marketed the Anglepoise, and Carwardine kept on developing the concept and designing new models.

The original design had four springs and was intended for use in working environments, such as doctors surgeries and workshops. Carwardine also developed a three spring version for home use, known as the 1227. The latter was produced from 1934 onwards, although various adaptations were made, including developing it for use with a different sized bulb.

Jac Jacobsen, an importer in Norway, was permitted to manufacture Carwardine’s Anglepoise designs in Norway from 1938-9.

A key feature to the Anglepoise design is the placement of the springs near the base. While Carwardine’s design has been extensively imitated by other companies, true vintage Anglepoise lamps under the original patent can be identified by where and how the springs are placed.

Carwardine died in 1947. The Terry Spring Company continued to develop the lamps, and allow manufacture in Holland by Hella from 1952. In 1953, they license Luxo to market the lamp in the USA. The company now exist as ‘Anglepoise’, producing a Type3 design in 2003, and re-issuing the original 1227 design in 2009 to mark 75 years of manufacture history.

Collecting vintage Anglepoise lamps

Anglepoise lamps are considered iconic. They have featured in rock songs, used by artists to create multi-media exhibitions, and a giant example was created for the Roald Dahl Museum. Vintage examples are widely collectible.

Collectors will therefore generally focus on the early years of Anglepoise manufacture, and the first two models – the four spring corporate design, and the three spring 1227.

However, the 1960s and 1970s models produced by Terry Springs are also considered to be vintage Anglepoise lamps.


Original Terry produced Anglepoise lamps can sell for £4 to £200+ on eBay, depending on the condition and how old they are.

However, auctions in America have sold original Carwardine Terry Anglepoise lamps for £200-$900

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