William Yale was born in Newport, Shropshire in 1843. He was employed by the Copelands factory from 1869 to around 1895, where he was known for painting bird scenes and latterly finely painted landscapes and cityscapes. After he left Copelands, he set up his own studio in Stoke-on-Trent, where he advertised himself as 'a Tile and Slab Decorator'. During this time, he began decorating plaques which he acquired from other potteries and fired in a kiln attached to his premises. It is likely that the present lot is an example of such a plaque.
See Vega Wilkinson Spode-Copeland-Spode, The Works and its People 1770-1970, (Woodbridge, 2002), pp. 236-237 for a more detailed note on the work of William Yale.