The Sutton Service
Sir Richard Sutton, 2nd Bt. (1799-1855) succeeded to the baronetcy and his grandfather's extensive estates in Nottinghamshire, Norfolk, Leicestershire and London in 1802 when he was only four years old. He was educated at Trinity College, Cambridge. During his long minority his wealth increased considerably and, upon attaining his majority in 1819, he immediately married Mary Elizabeth, daughter of Benjamin Burton of Burton Hall, co. Carlow. The extensive service, of which the present pair of dessert-stands forms a part, is likely to have been commissioned to celebrate the wedding.
Sir Richard was a keen sportsman about whom it was said 'he never had an equal', and in addition was noted for his hospitality. Although asked to stand for parliament on a number of occasions he never entered politics, for which he was said to hold particular contempt. His chief interest was hunting at which he excelled. He had a liking for 'difficult' horses and first hunted with the Barton, becoming Master in 1822. He later hunted with the Cottesmore and then the Quorn from 1848, having bought Quorn Hall from the Oliver family. Although a passionate sportsman, he also had a love for music and played the flute. He died in 1855 at his London residence, Cambridge House, 94 Piccadilly, and as a mark of respect, the Quorn called off hunting for the day. His estates passed first to his eldest son John and then to his second son Richard, who was a keen yachtsman and challenged for the America's Cup in 1885. Sir Richard was an influential patron of the Royal goldsmiths Rundell, Bridge and Rundell. He commissioned numerous important works in silver from them, many of which were offered in the sale of his collection at Christie's, London, 31 March 1976. In its scale and decorative quality, this service is comparable to the service made by Paul Storr for the Duke of Norfolk, 1816-17, in the Lillian and Morrie Moss Collection.