About Us

A.E.L.Ltd. brochure from around 1920

AEL Brochure 1930s
Over 100 years of craftsmanship.

The name Lejeune has been synonymous with first class bronze founding for over 100 years. Emile and his wife Augustine moved from France to London around 1904. As AEL, the company concentrated on small ornamental bronzes, decorative architectural fittings and, with the spread of the automobile, car mascots. Emile was not only a clever bronze worker but also a talented sculptor. It is said (Michel Legrand - Mascottes Automobiles) that a friend and fellow sculptor, Charles Paillet, sold Emile Lejeune the mascotte 'Plongeuse' and from this model Emile created his iconic mascot the 'Speed Nymph', the design for which was registered in 1917. The success of this first mascot enabled Emile to commission work from some of the best known artists of the day with many existing patterns bear the initials of sculptors such as Coffin, Renevey and Charles Paillet. It was not long before Lejeune had established itself, and by 1929 was being described as “the world's largest motor car mascot manufacturer”

Emile and Augustine separated in 1929 and Emile returned to France. Augustine and her son, Louis, took over the running of the business in 1933 it was renamed Louis Lejeune Ltd. Louis and his mother ran the company from premises at 132 Great Portland Street, London until Louis' death in 1969. The business continued until to operate in London until 1978 when it was bought by the sculptor Sir David Hughes and moved from London to Wilburton in Cambridgeshire, where it remains to this day.

Whilst the popularity of car mascots has declined over the years, the company continues to produce bronze sculptures to the highest quality using traditional materials and techniques. Sir David's son Timothy has been running the company since 1998.

Lejeune is unique in the breadth of services it is able to provide. We carry a range of over four hundred original patterns which may be supplied in a variety of finishes and mounting options to suit a variety of different applications.
The Lejeune archive is constantly evolving, and it is our aim to continue this process of improvement. Some of our models have been in production for over 100 years, whilst new introductions are being made all the time.
We aim for the highest quality in our bronzes and the sculptors we employ are all well respected in their individual fields. Sir David Hughes contributed many additions to the range until his death in 2003, as have Anthony Maynard, Neil Dalrymple and Clark Watling.
Where a specific need is not catered for from the existing range, for example for the commissioning of a new trophy or special gift, Lejeune is able to turn its skills towards producing a one-off item to a client's specification. We have produced many bespoke pieces over the years and welcome enquiries in this area.