Photo: T H Everitt; Studio photo from the Estate of Gladys Cheetham. Courtesy of The Harrison Weir Collection.


Oaklands Sceptre was a trail-blazing and highly respected Blue Persian female, shown to perfection by her owner and relative newcomer to the Fancy, Miss Gladys Cheetham, of Brighouse, Yorkshire.

Miss Cheetham had come from a family with a long history of successful breeding, her father, Mr. J. Cheetham, being a renown breeder of Poultry, who for a number of years had appeared invincible, and amongst the most popular breeds. He was also a successful businessman, who, in conjunction with his brother owned a Silk Spinning Mill, the weekly wages burden of which equalled an astonishing 500! Needless to say, his daughter benefited from this experience, but when he tried to prevail upon her to breed dogs instead, she remained obdurate, and her love of cats prevailed.


From Miss Cheetham's own cattery records, we find that Sceptre was born on 9th April, 1909 and was in fact bred by Mr Hodgkinson, of Sutherlands Rd, West Ealing, London1. Her sire was Mr Hodgkinson's own Blue Persian male. 'The Gondolier',(c1905) and her dam was a Blue Persian female, 'Donna Ulsterina'.She was subsequently purchased by Miss Cheetham for the sum of 10.10.0! (a not insignificant amount for 1909!). Clearly, the young Miss Cheetham had inherited her father's eye for recognising 'show form potential' in livestock, as time and a highly successful show career for Sceptre, would soon prove, beyond any reasonable doubt.

        Haddo Bluebeard, Blue
    The Gondolier, Blue 
    |   Fionnala
Oaklands Sceptre, Apr-9-1909, Blue M
    |   Don Carlos, Blue
    Donna Ulsterina, Blue
        Ulster Shadowy One


Two full siblings are recorded from repeat breedings, the first being a Blue female born on 12th July 1909. 'Rustic Queen" was subsequently exported to the USA to Mrs C W Chapin, of Sullivan County, New York. A second full sibling, 'The Hon.Jane' was born 11th March, 1911.

Of Show results we have a full and extensive record, maintained by Sceptre's owner in her own Cattery records, in which are listed the following shows and wins:

Batley: 21st May, 1910: 1st and Silver Medal for Best Cat in Show*(First BIS win)
Ossett: 11th June, 1910: 1st and Northern Counties CC Medal
Hounslow: 8th Nov.1910: 1st in Open Class, Best Cat in Show*
1st in Members, Silver Cup for Best Cat in Show
B.P.C.S. Badge for Best Blue Female
N.C.C.C Medal for Best in Show
National Cat Club Diploma for Best Blue
Wakefield, N.C.C.C.Show, 24th Nov.1910: Challenge & 1st in Open Class
Mrs Wilson's Special for Best Blue
B.P.C.S. Badge for Best Blue Female
National Cat Club Silver Medal for Best LH Female
Crystal Palace, 6th & 7th Dec.1910 Challenge & 1st in Open Class
Mrs Stephens Special for Best Blue Female
National Cat Club Silver Salver for Best Blue LH
Mrs Slingsbys Special for Best Blue Female
B.P.C.S. Challenge Prize & Badge
Messrs Wilsons Ltd Bronze Medal for Best LH
Westminster, 19th & 20th Jan, 1911 Challenge & 1st in Open Class
1st in Members
Miss Hind's Special for Best Eyes
B.P.C.S. Challenge Prize & Badge
Mrs Slingsby's Special for Best Blue Female
Birmingham, Jan 4th & 5th, 1911 Challenge & 1st in Open Class
B.P.C.S. Challenge Prize & Badge
Mrs Slingsby's Special for Best Blue Female
Lady Marcus Beresford Silver Challenge Cup for Best Blue LH
Burton, Oct 4th, 1911 Challenge & 1st in Open Class
Lady Marcus Beresford Silver Challenge Cup for Best Blue LH
B.P.C.S. Challenge Prize & Badge
Miss Savory's Special for Best Blue Female
Westminster, 11th & 12th Jan, 1912 Best Cat in Show, Champion of Champions
Mrs Sinkin's Gold Medal for Champion of Champions
Miss King's Special for Best Blue Female
National Cat Club Special for Best In Show
Dr.Prior's special for Best Female in Champions Class
Scottish Cat Club Special for Best LH in Show
N.C.C.C.Special for Best in Show
Mrs Finch 5 shillings for Soundest Blue Coat
Mrs Kelly's Special for Soundest Colour in Female Adult
Hounslow, 5th Nov.1912 Best in Show, Challenge & 1st in Open Class., 1st in Members
Wilson's Ltd Cup for Best in Show, won outright
The Minley Cup for Best LH Female
The N.C.C.C.Medal for Best LH in Show
Birmingham, 26th & 27th Nov, 1912 Challenge and 1st in Open Class
Champion of Champions
1st in Team. 2nd in Brace
Mrs Slingsby's Cup for Best Blue Female
Wilsons Ltd Medal for 2nd Best LH
S.C.C.C. Gold Medal for Best LH Opposite Sex to Cup winner
Mrs Briton Special for smallest ears in Blue Female
Westminster, 16th & 17th Jan, 1913 2nd in Open Class (with Oaklands Sheila 1st, and Oaklands Seabreeze 3rd!!!)
3rd in Members
Westminster, 7th, 8th & 9th Jan, 1914 1st in Open Class & Championship. 1st in Brace,
3rd in Team with Silvio & Stella. 1st in Members
Oaklands Challenge prize for Best Blue Female
Lady Marcus Beresford Cup for Best LH Blue
Newbury Medal for Best Blue Cat
Harrogate, Jan 29th, 1914 1st & Championship in Open Class, 2nd in Members
2nd in Lancs, & Yorks., 1st in Team with Steadfast & Sheila
3rd in Brace with Seabreeze
National Cat Club Silver Spoon for Best Female Cat
Oaklands Challenge Prize for Best Blue Female.(B.P.C.S)
Miss Meeson's Special for Best Blue Female LH.2

For an independent assessment on Sceptre's qualities, we turn to an article written by Judge Mr T.J.Ambrose, who visited the Oaklands Stud in January 1913. He describes her as follows:

"But of Sceptre. What a wonderful combination of strength and quality! Her head is of sufficient strength for a good male; in fact, would shame many. Her full cheeks, full snub nose, and strength of muzzle, to say nothing of the width between the ears, which, by the way, are neat and well carried, short limbs and body, and built on very sturdy lines throughout, beautiful wide-awake eyes, and immense wealth of coat, which stands, as it should do, on end, and not, as many are, showing that tendency to flatness. Altogether, she is a beautiful example of what a Blue Persian Cat should be"2.

The above is indeed a 'glowing' recommendation, given by a sound and much respected judge.

Regretfully, Miss Cheetham's beloved 'Sceptre' died prematurely, on 9th April, 1914,1. having given her mistress a great amount of joy and leaving her with two exceptional daughters.


Sceptre's most successful litter was in fact her first, which produced a second generation of two Champions. Her litter records are listed as follows:

  • 1st Litter: 9th July, 1910: to Sir Archie II of Arrandale, resulted in 2 Males born dead, and 2 Females.1 These were:
    • Ch.Oaklands Rosedrop: Blue Persian #7454 NCC
    • Ch.Oaklands Seabreeze: Blue Persian #7455 NCC
  • 2nd Litter: 3rd July 1911: to Ch. Neila Billi of Thorpe 6 kittens, 3 males 3 females (all dead)1
  • 3rd Litter: 1913. Two litters, To Steadfast, 12 in number all dead.1

Left: Record of the parentage and purchase of Oaklands Sceptre.
Right: Record of first breeding and results as indicated above.
Images from the Gunnersbury Lodge, Mill Hill Park book, Oaklands Cattery), courtesy of The Harrison Weir Collection


Studio Photo by J Russell & Sons, Windsor. By special appointment to His Majesty The King
From the Estate of Gladys Cheetham, courtesy of The Harrison Weir Collection

Left Photo: T.H Everitt, from 'The Queen', (The Ladies Newspaper) 28th Feb, 1914
Right Photo: T.H.Everitt, 1914 hand-coloured original photo from the Estate of Gladys Cheetham
Images courtesy of The Harrison Weir Collection


Miss Gladys Cheetham with her young Blue Persian female, Ch.Oaklands Sceptre. Press Photo: Sport& General. Crystal Palace Show, December, 1910.
The Famous Oaklands Blues (with Oaklands Sceptre ,centre left). Full page supplement from: 'Fur & Feather', 24th Jan, 1913
Images courtesy of The Harrison Weir Collection.
The abode of Oaklands Sceptre
Photo: Fur & Feather, Feb 16th, 1912
Courtesy of The Harrison Weir Collection


  1. Breeders Records, Gunnersbury Lodge, Mill Hill Park Book, from the estate of Gladys Cheetham, courtesy of The Harrison Weir Collection.
  2. Quoted from an article by T J. Ambrose, from 'Fur & Feather' 24th Jan, 1913.
  3. All photos as per Sources and Credits given.

Registers associated with this article include The Incorporated Cat Fanciers Association of Great Britain (TICFAGB), National Cat Club (NCC), The Cat Club (CCR), Beresford Cat Club (BCC), Feline Federation Francaise (FFF), Siamese Cat Registry (SCR), US Register & Studbook for Cats (USR)including Supplement(USRS), The Studbook of the American Cat Association (ACA), and the Studbook & Register of the Cat Fanciers' Association (CFA).


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