- British Ceramics Biennial : A Great Wall
Curated by : Barney Hare Duke, Aileen McEvoy & David Newey
Produced in collaboration with : British Ceramics Confederation
Photos : Daniel Wiggins & David Newey
- A collaboration between the British Ceramics Biennial and the British Ceramics Confederation in the presentation of a range of 36 British based but international ceramics manufacturers, showcasing the breadth of the industry from: tableware, to refractory blocks, hip joints and filters used in humanitarian aid camps, presented in a striking modular display.
The Great Wall was one of the main exhibitions that I was responsible for organising as part of my time working for the BCB and was curated by myself, festival co director Barney Hare Duke and former executive office of the Arts Council for England Aileen McEvoy. We set out to create a display that not only showcased each individual product and company in the most aesthetically pleasing way, whilst also creating a larger narrative between each display that made a narrative that highlighted the diversity of modern British ceramic manufacturing.
- ABOVE : Panorama of The Great Wall (Side 1) - Situated in the main China Hall of Spode.
- ABOVE : Panorama of The Great Wall (Side 2) - Situated in the main China Hall of Spode.
- ABOVE : Aynsley - "Contemporary Florals" & "Pembroke Athens Tableware"
The Aynsley brand was established by John Aynsley in 1775 in a small pottery in Lane End, later known as Longton. John Aynsley 2nd founded the Portland works of John Aynsley and Company in 1861. Early production was of decorative china ‘tea wares’ followed soon by ‘breakfast services’ and ‘dessert wares’. To this day, Aynsley manufacture in Longton, producing Staffordshire fine bone china tableware and tea ware with luxurious decoration and hand gilding in gold and platinum.
Fine bone china floral production has taken place within the Potteries for many years. Aynsley are one of few factories still producing handmade bone china flowers in Stoke-on-Trent.
Aynsley are extending their range of floral’s with the addition of striking new displays arranged in fine bone china cups. Each flower is individually handmade, and then fired and assembled by hand into the cup and finally hand painted to produce the finished piece.
Most of the production from this highly skilled unit is for export with a large market in the Far East.
When Aynsley was established in 1775, tea was still a luxury from the orient with teacups in early porcelain to drink it from. The Pembroke design was inspired in 18 th century, by one of these original oriental designs. Today one of the most popular Aynsley export products is the highly decorated collectors’ teacup and saucer range. Sold in great numbers to the far east completing the circle of the design with the return to its origin.
- ABOVE : British Ceramic Tile - "Chambray Brocade"
British Ceramic Tile
Sitting on the edge of Dartmoor in Devon, where tile manufacturing has taken place for well over a century, British Ceramic Tile is now a market leading manufacturing operation. Following a multi-million pound investment programme, British Ceramic Tile combines the best of British design with quality, value and a serious approach to social and environmental responsibilities.
The Chambray range has been designed and made in Britain by some of the UK’s leading designers . The main design of Chambray is a full tile Brocade design in raised relief with a sparkling metallic print on a contrasting background colour, giving the effect of heavily embroidered tapestry.These feature tiles are in high contrast to the plainer field tiles and provide a real wow factor.
- ABOVE : Dudsons - "Evolution Range"
As a world leading specialist in the manufacture and supply of tableware to the international hospitality industry, Dudson integrates cutting edge design and state of the art manufacturing with a wealth of experience within the market place. Remaining a privately owned family business, the oldest in the UK tableware industry, Dudson continues to manufacture ceramic products at two factory sites in Stoke-on-Trent, demonstrating ongoing commitment to quality of product and service.
Manufacturing ceramic products has traditionally been costly to the environment, with firing and glazing in particular resulting in high energy use. Until now! ‘Evolution’ is produced using 100% lead-free ThermECO glaze and is manufactured using a once-fired technology, significantly reducing the impact of production on the environment.
- ABOVE : Dudsons - "Evolution Range" - detail
- ABOVE : Dunoon - "Human Body", "Warm Hearts" and "Aqua" ranges
Dunoon is a Staffordshire based family business producing high quality products since 1974. Fine bone china clays from Cornwall create pieces which are brilliant white, translucent and resilient. Designs are by a talented in house team and freelance designers – some associated with Dunoon for over 25 years.All three mug on display are slip cast and use screen printed transfers, produced by a locally based printer.
Aqua, designed by in-house designer Jane Fern, includes rich raised and textured two tone gold on a pale blue wash background. The printing takes several days to complete due to the lengthy drying process between layers of colour, paste and golds.
Warm Hearts uses Dunoon’s new modern fine bone china Lomond shape by in-house designer, Caroline Bessey.
The Human Body
The Human Body is one of a series of informative mugs based on in depth research by Stoke -on -Trent based designer, Caroline Dadd. This oversized mug, with its large, easy to hold handle is technically challenging to produce efficiently.
- ABOVE : Dunoon - "Warm Hearts" and "Human Body" - detail
- ABOVE : Emma Bridgewater - "Polka Dot Half Pint Mug"
Emma Bridgewater pottery has gone from strength to strength in its 26 year history. It continues to flourish and grow, and has become an iconic brand of ceramic manufacture which is sold worldwide. It proudly produces all of its ceramic ware right here in the Potteries.
“Polka Dot Half-Pint Mug”
Last year this half pint mug design was voted a design ‘icon’ by industry awards Excellence in Housewares. It is spongeware – a century’s old hand decorating technique which makes each piece of ware unique. The decorators initial each mug they decorate to show their pride in the work.
Describing the inspiration behind her design, Emma explained “The Half pint mug is based on a traditional earthenware mug shape which deliberately recalls the look and feel of the kind of mug that was used in pubs to serve beer and cider. The heavy foot is a reminder of the way the foot of a mug might be turned on a lathe to create a distinctive profile and also greater stability.
Polka Dot remains one of the company’s bestselling and most collected ranges.
- ABOVE : Emma Bridgewater - "Polka Dot Half Pint Mug" - detail
- ABOVE : IBSTOCK Brick - "Linear Brick" and "BrickSheild Cladding System"
Ibstock Brick Ltd
Ibstock is the UK’s largest manufacturer of clay facing bricks and cladding materials. The company operates 20 brickworks across the country producing a range of over 500 different bricks alone in addition to its rain screen cladding and other clay walling products. Ibstock has been at the forefront of the drive to produce sustainable building materials and has invested £55 million over the past 10 years in energy efficiency and environmental improvements.
Linear, is a range of clay bricks that are distinguished from standard bricks being manufactured in a range of extended lengths that includes: 240mm, 290mm, 327mm and 440mm.
In the UK there are approximately 6.6 million homes that although structurally sound, are thermally sub standard. They are classified as “hard to treat homes” because they are built without cavity walls or are “system build” that cannot be easily retrofitted with insulation.
Ibstock combine the thin bricks made at Chesterton and Ravenhead factories with the insulation expertise of Rockwool to develop BrickShield, a product that is specifically designed for “hard to treat homes”, bringing them up to the latest thermal standards.
- ABOVE : Ideal Standard - "Hygeniq Urinal"
Armitage Shanks, a brand of Ideal Standard International is a leading provider of innovative and design-driven bathroom solutions, producing sanitaryware and baths, as well as brass fittings, shower enclosures, valves and kits, bathroom furniture and vanity units.
With its long experience and history of innovation, Ideal Standard continues to invest in advanced technology to ensure that their products are functional, yet aesthetically pleasing for both consumer and commercial sectors.
Ideal Standard has a long standing history of collaborations with top designers and architects to create bathrooms that span across top end, middle and mass markets
hygenIQ - urinal
Designed by Goodwin Hartshorn. The new hygenIQ urinal has a central fin cast within the bowl itself.
“The hygenIQ will help minimize the contamination of surfaces by urine and will reduce the potential for any contaminated urine to act as a source of infection. This new urinal technology will form a vital part of the future public washroom.” Leading biomedical scientist Dr Ron Cutler.
- ABOVE : Churchill China - "Ambience range"
Churchill is one of a few companies within the United Kingdom to still manufacture ceramics for the worldwide hospitality and retail sector. Based in Stoke-on-Trent, Churchill dates its origins back to 1795, providing local employment for over two centuries. With a thriving graduate recruitment process, there are now 40 graduates in the company.
A family company for many years, the Roper family still hold a significant share in the business.
A stylish and elegant range of finer, lighter Alchemy plates and beverage pieces. Designed to evolve and compliment the existing Alchemy range to create the ultimate fine dining experience.
Every plate has an ultra low profile with a defined well and a raised inner rim to frame the food and enhance the use of sauces, perfectly finishing each dish. The Alchemy White Beverage pieces perfectly enhance and integrate with this collection.
- ABOVE : Moorcroft - "Queens Choice Vase" and "Staffordshire Hoard Vase"
The first pieces of Moorcroft were designed in 1897 and the Moorcroft’s manufacturing process has barely changed. The only exception is that today an electrical kiln is used, rather than the original 1913 bottle oven that looms above the factory.
Thousands of visitors come to Moorcroft Heritage Visitor centre in Burslem each year, seeing at first hand the diverse skills that are needed to create a piece of Moorcroft.
Through the vision of the Moorcroft Design Studio and with added value coming from the experience, skills and craftsmanship of a dedicated Stoke-on-Trent workforce, Moorcroft is selling more of its magnificent ware than ever before. With a strong belief in its own destiny, Moorcroft has an ever-increasing reputation for being a design lead company, renowned worldwide for its quality and innovation.
Queens Choice prestige numbered edition vase
2011 marks the 10th anniversary of this renowned design, described by many as “quintessentially Moorcrcoft”
Inspired by the words of Titania, Queen of the fairies in Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Nights Dream
Hop in his walks and gambol in his eyes, Feed him with apricots and dewberries,
With purple grapes, green figs and mulberries, The honey bags steal from the humble-bee.
Designer Emma Bosson FRSA crafted something enchantingly beautiful. In celebration of the anniversary of the design Moorcroft created one of its largest art pottery vases to date. The original 2001 design is enhanced with honey bees, glow worms and no less than fifteen butterflies dancing and fluttering among the colour clusters of ripe fruit.
Staffordshire Gold Vase
Taking inspiration from the Staffordshire Hoard the remarkable collection of Anglo Saxon gold and silver unearthed from a field in Staffordshire in 2010, Moorcroft designer Alicia Amison has created this wonderful new design.
- ABOVE : Johnsons Tiles - "Ceramic Street Sign"
Established in 1901 at Cobridge, Johnson Tiles quickly outgre its first premises and moved to the Alfred Meakin & Co., Highgate complex in Tunstall during 1910. The company grew by the process of acquisition and merger to become one of the largest manufacturers in the world.
In 2001 the company moved to the present site in Harewood Street, Tunstall following an investment over £35 million in a purpose designed, state of the art manufacturing facility. The company has built a reputation as being innovative and design leading whilst being one of the most environmentally responsible in the industry today.
“Durst Pictocer HD Digital Plotter”
Johnson Tiles have used digital inkjet processes to decorate tiles for several years and in May 2011 installed a Durst Pictocer Plotter to decorate individual tiles, profiled tiles and fittings plus bespoke tile panels and murals. The new equipment is the only installation of its type in the United Kingdom and one of the first in the world.
The new process revolutionises ceramic surface decoration by being able to replicate anything from photographs, natural stones to any art medium. The technology allows the decoration of individual tiles to individual tiles or large panels or murals.
The possibilities of this new process are limited only by the imagination.
- ABOVE : Jacuzzi UK - "Victorian Lavatory" and "New Model Basin"
Jacuzzi UK is one of the most prestigious Bathroom manufacturers producing high quality bathing and hydrotherapy products including the world famous Jacuzzi baths and Hot Tubs. Jacuzzi UK Group was established in 2000 and is part of the successful Global business manufacturing in Europe and the US. Head Office and one of the group’s factories are based in Bradford, West Yorkshire, manufacturing Acrylic Standard, Free Standing and Whirlpool Baths and Astracast Composite Sinks. A further factory is situated in the heart of the Potteries at Newcastle Under Lyme in Staffordshire, a bench casting sanitary ware plant specializing in high quality, complex, contemporary and traditional sanitaryware.
The history of the site started in 1972 in Hanley at the Broom Street site known as Balterley Bathrooms. In 1982 the Company expanded and acquired the current Newcastle under Lyme site. Over the coming years there were several name changes and acquisitions and in 1986 was acquired by Bradford based Spring Ram Corporation.
The final name change occurred in 2000 when the business was acquired by Jacuzzi UK.
Recently the site has diversified into manufacture of fine fire clay producing kitchen drainers to compliment the composite and steel kitchen sinks produced at its Bradford site and factory in Malta. This has maximized the sites capacity.
Victorian Close couple pan and Cistern in Victorian Garden Decoration
This Victorian water closet and cistern is the very epitome of the traditional bathroom. Confident square forms with distinctive splash backs firmly show the detail and quality achieved by the skilled team of workers.
The hand decorating of the floral pattern is again a time consuming task and is carefully undertaken so that a perfect example of the original design is replicated.
This combination is a good representation of the early beginnings of the pottery at Newcastle under Lyme and can also be produced in blue pattern or plain white.
Veya Basin and Pedestal
This Veya basin and pedestal was chosen to represent the technical and production skills being employed at Jacuzzi UK to achieve such a distinctive yet organic design.
The fineness of the basin and the distinctive sweep of the pedestal in a seemingly continuous line into the basin is a great achievement considering the difficulties in maintaining excellent dimensional tolerances in the ceramic manufacturing process.
Unique methods are employed in the kiln firing to ensure all of the Veya suites sculptured lines are maintained.
- ABOVE : Fairey Filtration Systems - "Star Cep Membranes"
Fairey Filtration Systems
Fairey Filtration Systems Limited is part of the technical ceramics division of the MANTEC group of companies, a diverse group, manufacturing both consumer and industrial products.
Fairey Filtration Systems Limited produces a wide range of technical porous ceramic products including tubes, tiles and discs for applications such as filtration, cross flow, microfiltration, fluidisation, aeration and diffusion, among other.
All ceramics products are manufactured in house at the factory in Longton
The Star-Sep™ ceramic membrane filter
The filter channel’s unique ‘star’ form increases the filtration area and induces turbulence at lower crossflow velocities. This results in a reduction of the pumping energy requirement, substantially improving cost effectiveness.
Fairey Filtration Systems Ltd supplies porous ceramic media that are chemically inert, stable and available in a variety of grades, with temperature capabilities of 900°C.
- ABOVE : Weinerberger - "Telford Brindle Brick"
With 229 plants in 27 countries, Wienerberger is the world's largest producer of bricks and number one in the European clay roof tile market. It also holds leading positions in paver markets across Central and Eastern Europe.
Wienerberger has been present in the UK for a number of years and is particularly known for its Terca facing bricks, including Baggeridge and Desimpel brands and more recently the acquisition of Sandtoft Roof Tiles. Today, it offers one of the broadest product portfolios in the UK, from clay facing bricks (stock and wire-cut) and specialist engineering bricks, through domestic and commercial pavers, to the cladding system and a full range of clay, concrete and slate roofing products. CoriumPorotherm, the precision engineered clay block walling system popular across Europe for more than 30 years, was introduced to the UK market in 2009
Telford Brindle Brick
The new Telford Brindle brick is a smooth finished facing brick which has a tonal range from deep blue through purple to blue/brown.
The distinctive colour is due to composition of the local clay which is high in iron, giving brick its characteristic blue finish after firing. The subtle tonal distinctions are due to kiln temperature and conditions in which the brick is made.
Corium Cladding System
Corium is a unique brick cladding system that combines brick with a cost effective fast track installation. It offers a facing brick finish for projects where a cladding system is required rather than traditional masonry.
The Corium system compromises genuine brick tiles, specially designed to fix mechanically to an HPS200 galvanised steel backing section. An innovative and versatile solution, Corium brings exciting new colour and texture combinations to the construction industry. Patented in the UK and Worldwide; and fully industry tested and approved.
- ABOVE : Morgan Technical Ceramics - "Ceramic Hip Joint"
Morgan Ceramics (combines Morgan Technical Ceramics and Morgan Thermal Ceramics businesses) uses competences in material science and applications engineering to manufacture custom products for demanding environments.
· Insulating fibre, insulating bricks and monolithics
· Ceramic cores for complex turbine blades
· Components for electron tubes
· Feedthroughs for medical implants
· Piezoelectric ceramic actuators
Ceramic Hip Joints for the Medical Industry
Morgan Technical Ceramics – Rugby (MTC) has been developing implantable ceramic components for the orthopaedic community for more than 25 years. Using material expertise, combined with design excellence, MTC have developed unique solutions for customers such as anti-luxation femoral heads and acetabular cups, large diameter bearings including innovative bounding technology and resurfacing components.
- ABOVE : Ceramic Gas Products - "Gas Fire Radiants" & "Ultralite Kiln Base Insulation Material"
Ceramic Gas Products
Ceramic Gas Products focuses its manufacturing and marketing strategy on its unique and innovative loose fill insulation technology Ultralite, it’s Gas Fire Radiant’s and Electrical Porcelains.
“Ultralite Energy Efficient Loose-fill Insulation Material”
Ultralite ,a unique lightweight refractory material with excellent thermal insulation properties, saves significant energy and other costs within the table ware, sanitary ware and brick manufacturing industries. It replaces the traditional fibre insulation infill within kiln bases without the Health and Safety implications of ceramic fibres. Ultralite is used in applications such as boiler and furnace insulation, kiln wall cavity insulation, as a brick refractory, acoustic noise insulation and passive fire protection.
“Ceramic Gas Fire Radiant’s”
Ceramic Gas Products Ltd is the only UK based manufacturer to manufacture a full range of gas fire radiant’s for global brand leaders .
- ABOVE : "Ultralite Kiln Base Insulation Material" - detail
- ABOVE : Hanson UK "EcoStock Brick" & "LockClad System"
Hanson is the UK’s largest supplier of heavy building materials to the construction industry. Hanson produce aggregates (crushed rock, sand and gravel), ready-mixed and precast concrete, asphalt and cement-related materials and a range of building products. Part of the global Heidelberg Cement Group, Hanson’s UK business is split into three business lines – quarry products, building products and cement – which together operate over 300 manufacturing sites and employ some 5,600 people.
From process to product, the new Hanson Ecostock® range is the most environmentally friendly stock brick range in the UK.
Produced at our Measham plant, the Ecostock® range reflects the future demands of manufacturing and the environment, offering advanced colour consistency, dimensional accuracy and quality.
Cutting edge technology produces exceptional quality bricks and reduces energy consumption by up to 50%.
The Hanson Red Bank LockClad system provides an external rainscreen façade and is suitable for most types of construction, including:
· Masonry buildings
· Concrete buildings
· Timber buildings
· Steel framed buildings
- ABOVE : Royal Crown Derby - "Sudbury Tableware", "Ruche" & "Avra Elephants"
Royal Crown Derby
Royal Crown Derby was established in 1750 producing English Fine Bone China tableware, vases and ornaments. Each piece is decorated by hand, making every piece subtly different and therefore a unique piece.
From the making of the bone china body, to the finished pieces, all of the Sudbury ware is made at Royal Crown Derby in Derby. Sudbury is a new pattern designed by Jane James on an old shape. Inspired by British tapestry and embroidery, the everlasting combination of cobalt blue in glaze, sparkling white bone china and burnished gold show true ceramic qualities at their best.
Ruche was designed by the well known fashion designer, Bruce Oldfield. Launched earlier this year, it’s the result of over a year of development.
Ruche in some ways looks fairly simple, but as with Sudbury the skill in perfecting this look and achieving Royal Crown Derby quality is huge.
Royal Crown Derby is known for its paperweights – usually three dimensional animals and birds with stylised shapes and decoration. This new collection of Indian Elephants is maybe simpler in colouring but plays with simple raised gold work against in glaze colours. The use of in glaze means that the gold sits beautifully on the surface of the colours, every line sharp and true.
- ABOVE : Royal Crown Derby - "Avra Elephants" - detail
- ABOVE : Spode - "Blue Italian"
Spode has been creating iconic designs since it was founded in 1770 by Josiah Spode.
Always a technically innovative and inspiring company, Spode redefined the pottery industry in the 18th Century with:
· The development of a winning formula for fine bone china.
· The perfection of blue under-glaze printing which resulted in the launch of Blue Italian in 1816.
In 2009 Portmeirion Group acquired the Spode brand after it had fallen into administration. Since then Portmeirion Group has returned the manufacture of the iconic Blue Italian range from the Far East back to its factory in Stoke-on-Trent.
Launched in 1816, and in continuous production ever since, Blue Italian is an iconic and quintessentially British design. It is one of the collections that secured Spode’s reputation as a leader in the ceramic industry.
- ABOVE : WWRD - "Anthemion Blue"
WWRD is a leading provider of luxury home and lifestyle products sold worldwide under a number of well-recognized brands, including Waterford, Wedgwood, Royal Doulton, Royal Albert, Minton and Johnson Brothers.
Anthemion Blue is a prestige tableware collection using neo-classical iconography and retailing at £125 per plate. It's opulent, rich cobalt blue background contrasts with its lavish burnished gold decoration to create the ultimate luxury for the table.
- ABOVE : WWRD - "Anthemion Blue" - detail
- ABOVE : Denby - "Halo" & "Imperial Blue"
Denby Pottery has been created from local clay at its original site in the
heart of Derbyshire for over 200 years. Initially producing domestic
wares, bottles and jars Denby has evolved into a producer of both classic
and contemporary tableware for the UK and abroad.
Denby’s signature is richly coloured glazes from classic 'Imperial Blue' to
recently introduced 'Halo', which epitomises glaze techniques handed down
through generations. Distinctive and practical, Denby is inherently strong
being safe for use in the oven, microwave, dishwasher and freezer. The key
values of craftsmanship, quality and design still underpin every piece of
tableware Denby produce.
In a vibrant blue and crisp white Imperial Blue is Denby’s most iconic range. Designed in 1989, Imperial Blue continues to be a best seller for Denby. Inspired by the company’s much loved and long running Cottage Blue pattern of the 1920’s, Imperial Blue has evolved over the years to meet contemporary dining needs whilst always retaining its integrity and quality. Made at its factory in Derbyshire, the range epitomises Denby’s straight forward approach to design to create pottery for well presented food for all occasions. By popular demand the range is extensive for maximum choice – there are over 30 pieces for eating, drinking, serving and cooking to meet contemporary requirements and new items are constantly being added.
Epitomising all that is uniquely Denby, “Halo” tableware is the result of skills passed down through generations. Creating sophisticated balance between contemporary design and traditional hand crafted pottery, “Halo” has the ability to suit a wide range of interior styles. Each piece is either dipped of painted by hand by skilled craftspeople to produce an effect which is captured by Denby at its best.
- ABOVE : Burgess, Dorling & Leigh - "Asiatic Pheasant" & "Calico"
Ketley Brick Co. - "Diamond Chequered Pavers"
Burgess, Dorling & Leigh
Burleigh is one of the last manufacturers of transfer printed ceramics, where designs are transferred from a hand engraved copper roller onto tissue paper and then onto pottery. An English method that most Staffordshire Potteries were using in the late 18 th and 19 th Centuries, to make everyday wares, Burleigh has kept the tradition alive in a Victorian pottery using original methods and machinery.
The Calico pattern first went into production in 1968. Calico’s deep blue print was born out of the late 60’s / early 70’s love of Edwardian style nostalgia. It remains a well loved pattern the world over.
A quintessentially English design and one of Burleigh’s best selling patterns which has been in production at Burleigh’s for over 150 years, an enduring pattern which has survived successfully through the generations changing little except for some of its shapes to meet contemporary lifestyles.
Ketley Brick Co. Ltd
Ketley Brick Co. Ltd is part of a long established family business based in the heart of the Black Country. The parent company was founded in 1805 and manufacture’s Dreadnought roof tiles as well as Staffordshire Blue engineering bricks and pavers. All the products made in this traditional factory are recognised for their durability and colour. Uniquely Ketley bricks are of “Class A” from Etruria Marl clay sourced from clay pits ½ a mile from the factory.
Diamond Chequered Paver
All the products manufactured by the company have retained their original traditional characteristics and are true heritage products.An authentic product. The deep impressions pressed into the surface are typical of the original pavers made over 100 years ago. The Ketley clay pavers have passed the ultimate test “the test of time”
- ABOVE : Michelmersh Brick Holdings PLC - "Charnwood Handmade St Pancras Red"
Michelmersh Brick Holdings PLC
As part of Michelmersh Brick Holdings PLC, Charnwood is the producer of traditionally made bricks and specials. Charnwood offer a rivalled range of colours, shapes and sizes, offering complete flexibility of manufacture. The colour blends are limitless and they are able to produce bespoke blends for truly individual projects. The quality of their unique handmade bricks makes them perfect for so many projects.With five UK sites in their portfolio, offering a range of machine made and handmade bricks and tiles, Michelmersh Brick Holdings PLC are the only UK owned volume brick manufacturer in the UK, and proud to be Britain’s Brick Specialists.
Charnwood hand made St Pancras red
A specialist bespoke brick made as part of the restoration project of the St Pancras Hotel an iconic London landmark grade one listed building. The work demanded detailed research the brief was to match as closely as possible the original components. The facing brick had to be made from the same clay as the originals, patterns, profiles and sizes were all replicated. All bricks were hand-made and thrown traditionally with the brick makers initials in the frog of each brick.
- ABOVE : Michelmersh Brick Holdings PLC - "Charnwood Handmade St Pancras Red" - detail
- ABOVE : Naylor Drainage - "Denlok Pipe" & "Hearthernware Ball Mills"
Naylor Drainage Ltd
Naylor Drainage PLC, founded in 1890, is a Barnsley based fourth generation family business. Until the 1990’s the business remained focused entirely on traditional clay drainage systems, but since then the business has trebled in size by diversifying into areas such as jacking pipes for trenchless installation, chemical drainage, industrial ceramics and latterly even flower pots (Naylor’s Yorkshire Flowerpots offer a unique lifetime frost guarantee). Some 250 people are employed on sites in Barnsley, South Yorkshire, Ossett West Yorkshire, Tipton and Fife.
Denlok is a high performance clay pipe which can be installed through trenchless methods – i.e. without needing to dig a trench. This has considerable advantages in terms of reduced surface disruption – traffics and environmental impacts are minimised.The product has been used worldwide since Naylor launched it in the early 1980’s, with major schemes in the Middle East, SE Asia and Australasia all installing Denlok, made in Yorkshire.
Hearthernware Ball Mills
Hearthernware is a range of high performance clay pipes and industrial ceramics with extreme heat and chemical resistance properties.The business was acquired in the 1990’s, being re-launched some years later a after marketing and product development overhaul.The product lends itself to processes where hot or chemically aggressive effluents arise. Naylor have considerable production flexibility which allows the production of bespoke items for specific customer requirements. Products are sold worldwide, with chemical plants in continental Europe being the source of much repeat business.
- ABOVE : Royal Stafford - "Art of Entertaining", "Classic Century" & "Cities in Sketch"
Royal Stafford brings British design and British manufacture to the house wares ceramics market. The company offers innovative designs for a new decade whilst bringing together expertise of market knowledge and craftsmanship across both in house collections of ceramic table ware and bespoke ranges for client nationally and internationally who benefit from time honoured potting skills combined with modern manufacturing techniques. Innovation and original design is the cornerstone that is helping to add style to dining tables around the world.
Classic Century by Eva Zeisel
Internationally known for her organic modernist ceramic works, Eva Zeisel is truly one of the foremost designers of the Twentieth century. In 2004 she began her relationship with Royal Stafford selecting the best items from the original block moulds used for both the Classic and Century shapes from the 1950’s, from these a collection called Classic Century was recreated by the fine earthernware manufacturer, Royal Stafford of Burslem, Stoke on Trent.
Art of Entertaining and Cities in Sketch by Andrew Tanner
Through his award winning designs, Andrew Tanner successfully brings craft and design together and finds harmony between traditional values and modern appetites. The Art of Entertaining collection draws upon his love of food, art and design and his Cities in Sketch draw inspiration from quick sketches from travel journals that capture a moment and retain a memory of places visited. The hand drawn images with block colour offer a contemporary feel.
- ABOVE : Royal Stafford - "Classic Century" - detail
- ABOVE : Portmerion - "Botanics" & "Magic Garden Graphite Coffee Pot"
Royal Worcester - "Painted Fruits"
Portmeirion was founded in 1960 by the legendary pottery designer Susan Williams-Ellis. Susan’s philosophy was to create collections that were not only beautiful but also functional, and this philosophy lives on at Portmeirion.Always at the forefront of contemporary design, Portmeirion is renowned for its originality in design which has led to the launch of many trend setting designs – designs that are now seen as, or set to be, iconic.Portmeirion expects its casual dining designs to fit comfortably with everyday life – today a requirement of every contemporary consumer – and is devoted to producing stunning, unique and quality pieces.
Botanic Garden, with its stunning floral motifs and green leaf border, is one of Portmerion’s most recognised designs and is now seen as an icon of British ceramic design and manufacturing.In 1972 Susan Williams-Ellis, the founder of Portmerion and creator of the Botanic Garden, shook the ceramic world with the launch of a tableware collection using stunning floral motifs. Such vivid colours and intricate detail had never been seen on ceramic tableware before. It also encapsulated the new mood for casual dining, dispensing with the old formalities and bringing a new design philosophy to the marketplace. It became an instant success and has become a classic of British design and hailed as the world’s most popular floral casual tableware design.Today Botanic Garden earthenware is made using the finely tuned skills of a 500 strong UK workforce. In fact each Botanic Garden piece passes through 22 loving pairs of hands before it is ready to make its journey to an anticipating customer. It continues to lead the British ceramic manufacturing path with an unrivalled white body and inherent quality that promises to delight owners year after year. After 39 years it remains at the forefront of a growing export business with enthusiasts in such diverse countries as Korea, USA and Italy.Botanic Garden has become loved worldwide and recognised by many as synonymous with great British design and manufacturing – an innovator and a classic that, with new shapes and motifs, has remained as fresh and exciting today as it was in 1972.
Magic Garden Graphite
In celebration of Portmeirion’s 50th Anniversary in 2010, Portmeirion produced the Portmeirion Originals collection inspired by the iconic archive designs of Susan Williams-Ellis, the founder of Portmeirion. The lead piece in the collection was the Magic Garden Graphite Coffee Pot. A limited edition of 500, this piece was inspired by the fascinating discovery of a coffee pot found deep in Portmeirion's archive featuring the hand drawn design of Magic Garden, pencilled by Susan Williams-Ellis herself. This piece, made at Portmeirion's factory in Stoke-on-Trent, illustrates Portmeirion's outstanding contribution to great British design.
Royal Worcester is a quintessentially English brand and one of the oldest remaining pottery brands still in existence today.
It grew up in the Heart of England in the cathedral city of Worcester, nestling between a mixture of mature woodland, meandering river valleys, fruit orchards and abundant farmland which inspired the design of many of its ranges such as Painted Fruit and Evesham Gold.
Royal Worcester has continuously adapted to our changing lifestyles and fashions, and today, under Portmeirion Group’s ownership, Royal Worcester has a diverse range of products from prestige collections to classic everyday ware to gifts that people across the globe adore.
Painted fruit is an exclusive range of ornamental pieces, each uniquely crafted in the time honoured tradition of Royal Worcester fruit painting.
Made and decorated in Stoke on Trent and Worcester, combing the inherent talents of these two areas, Painted Fruit is a collection of individual pieces that are cherished by collectors across the globe.
Royal Worcester has developed the heritage of painting fruit for over two centuries and the decoration of each piece of Painted Fruit is a unique work of art having been fastidiously painted by hand.
The beauty of Painted Fruit can only be achieved thanks to the artistic skills of the craftsmen and women involved in its creation – painters can train for seven years before being ready to take their place in line with the great Worcester artists of the past.
The artist uses a palette of translucent colours and applies layer after layer of colour. After each layer the item is fired thus building up the strength of the colour giving Painted Fruit its unique depth and intensity and the design its three dimensional quality.
The fine skills of burnishers and gilders are used to complete these masterpieces with 22 carat gold.
The manufacturing process of these pieces is meticulous so much so that any piece may take three months to complete.
- ABOVE : Portmerion - "Botanics"
- ABOVE : Sandtoft - "Arcadia", "Barrow" & "Cassius" Roof Tiles
Sandtoft Roof Tiles Ltd
Part of the Weinerberger group, Sandtoft offers the UK’s largest and most diverse portfolio of roof tiles and accessories. In clay, concrete or slate, as well as the Koramic range of clay roof tiles.In addition to traditional plain tiles, pan tiles and slates, the Sandtoft range includes some of the industry’s most innovative products such as New Generation which make clay roof more affordable.Its renowned Heritage Service makes tiles and fittings to order and offers bespoke to handmade solutions for restoration projects.
The Cassius is a new generation clay tile that puts a whole new perspective on using natural materials on the roof.It dramatically cuts the cost of a natural clay roof helping to make colour permanent, natural roofing materials more affordable.Cassius is a large format pressed clay tile, fired with a ceramic finish. This creates a slate colour and appearance that is both extremely durable and colour permanent. Cassius is a thin leading edge tile that creates an attractive clay roof, while its large format size and interlocking design reduce material and installation costs.It provides a cost effective alternative to traditional slate and fibre cement products.Like all the roof tiles in the new generation range Cassius was designed in house by our own engineering team.They are pressed from plaster moulds to maintain the shape and the quality of the tiles interlocks. Quality controls exceed the stated limits to ensure the fit of the products on the roof. The range is manufactured in a new state of the art factory, one the largest investments in the UK roofing industry. The process is fully automatic with robot setting and packing.
Developed to match a reclaimed weathered pantile. It provides the look of an aged pantile from the day it is installed on the roof. It replicates the charm and character of reclaimed pantiles.Sandtoft employs its experience with engobes and dry powders to replicate a weathered, aged tile by applying them to the surface of the clay prior to pressing. Once fired the mixture of powders and engobes give the look a tile of 60 years of age.
Barrow Traditional Plain Tile
The Barrow Plain Tile and Alban Plain Tile are two new ranges of traditional clay plain tiles designed products to complement our current plain tile offering. Machine made but with a handcrafted finish these tiles are available in a variety of traditional colours.They are produced using advanced manufacturing techniques, which give each tile a sanded, rough surface and reclaimed look.Various blends of sand and pigments are applied and pressed into the tile to create colour and texture. We have developed many new techniques for varying the finish of our productsThe Barrow tile is available in 4 traditional colours while the Alban range incorporates the “sussex Blend” which features a mix of red and brown tones, and the “Vintage Blend” offering random shades of red and black to give an authentic weathered appearance.The Barrow and Alban have been produced using over 100 years of roofing expertise and to meet the increasing demand for traditional clay roof tiles. With a total of six new colour available, they can meet any architectural requirement and will give warmth, charm and character to any roof.
- ABOVE : Sandtoft - "Barrow" & "Arcadia" Roof Tiles - detail
- ABOVE : Sandtoft - "Arcadia" roof tiles - detail
- ABOVE : Steelite International : "Terramessa"
Steelite International is a world-leading manufacturer and supplier of award-winning, inspirational tabletop ranges for the international hospitality industry. The company’s core chinaware products are manufactured at its factory in Stoke-on-Trent. In addition to worldwide geographical coverage trading with over 130 countries, Steelite International’s business spans a number of industry sectors including commercial catering, leisure and hospitality market.Steelite International is a member of The Green Organisation that rewards and promotes environmental best practice around the world and the Staffordshire Business and Environmental Network, which aims to help local businesses reduce environmental impact while also generating profits.
Terramessa (from earth to table) was designed and developed to satisfy an identified market demand for ranges that complement good, honest, uncomplicated food. Its inspiration came from the traditional stoneware and artisan earthenware bought up to date through the use of contemporary yet highly functional shapes, suitable for general use in the hospitality markets.The look is at once, clean and earthy, the warm colours accentuating “homely” menus. The combination of four complementary colours adds a casual dimension and the hand finished reactive edging adding to each pieces individuality. Terramessa is designed to look good and perform exceptionally well with all cuisine types.Terramessa has been chosen by world renowned chef Feran Adria to present his brand new Tapas concept in Barcelona.
- ABOVE : Taylor Tunnicliff - "Bullers Rings" & Calibrator
Taylor Tunnicliff Ltd.
Longton based Taylor Tunnicliff Ltd , founded in 1867, specialises in the manufacture of “industry standard” Buller’s rings and Discs
“Buller’s Rings / Pyrometric Rings”
“Buller’s rings” are utilised by many of the world’s leading Table ware, Sanitary ware and Refractory manufacturers to measure the “heat work” in the kiln, giving an independent, accurate and reliable indication that the firing of the product is unaffected by any variations in temperature and kiln loading.
- ABOVE : W H Collier - "Primrose Specials"
W H Collier Ltd
W H Collier Ltd has been making handmade bricks on the same site at Marks Tey since 1863. Originally supplying brick into the Colchester area and as transport improved to London area. W H Collier Ltd produces some 500,000 handmade bricks per year to a variety of projects:Restoration: e.g. Windsor Castle, Worth AbbeyRenovation: e.g. St Edmundsbury CathedralSpecial Shapes: British Standard and purpose made specials from architects drawings or the original brick.New Build: For the discerning client who wants a brick build home to admireInternal Features: Small bricks (briquettes) have been used to build feature fireplaces through fashion changes.
“Medieval Chimney at St Edmundsbury Cathederal, Bury St. Edmunds, Suffolk”Brick Type: Primrose
The medieval Church of St James in the grounds of the Abbey of Bury St. Edmunds was nominated in 1914 as the cathedral for Suffolk. Work began in 1959 to enlarge the church for use as a cathedral. Between 1963 and 1970 the East end was completely rebuilt, but funds ran out and on the concrete base for a future tower could be constructed. Sufficient funding was then raised to enable the project to continue in the new millennium. The main building work was the construction of a 150 ft stone lantern tower which was completed in 2005. Other project also included a small chapel, transept and boiler house chimney. It was decided that the chimney would be a medieval design. Once the overall design was agreed W H Collier were involved in providing a brick which would blend with the stone of the cathedral and brick used in the refractory build which was no longer available.The standard of craftsmanship within the cathedral project is to a high standard and the chimney build was no exception.The chimney is supported on a brick chamber (built earlier), enclosing circular stairs and the boiler flue, which starts at crypt level and terminates with a turret roof and access door. Building the chimney commenced with the chamber built to the base of the shaft. The moulded bricks of the lead covered string courses were omitted, to avoid damage, and cut and set in on completion.In reducing the square to the octagon for the shaft it became difficult to maintain English Bond but solved by ensuring a central header, on all faces, and cutting specials to fit. The 1B, octagonal shaft was raised 40 courses to the underside of the corbels; it is necessary to appreciate the care needed as the existing steel flue, reaching full height, interrupted the normal processes of checking the octagon and levelling the courses. The five of corbelling (to increase to 1½B) were laid with accurate sharpness and finally bedding of the eight projectiles, extending 250mm, proved to be demanding and difficult to tail down in lime mortar.Throughout, the chimney is consistent in its accuracy and the harmony of the bed and cross-joints with the texture of the bricks clearly indicating the skills of the craftsmen. The work was the final chapter of a story that was written not with pen and paper, but with trowels and bricks, illustrated with a chimney that will be admired for many generations.
- ABOVE : Wade "Ceramic Decanters"
Wade Ceramics is the foremost manufacturer of Ceramic Decanters in the world supplying over 250,000 bottles per year to the spirits industry, predominately Scottish Whisky.All the Products are manufactured in Stoke-on-Trent in the brand new state of the art facility opened in 2010.The products can be seen in almost every airport all over the world and is an icon for the ceramic industry in Stoke-on-Trent.
Wade Ceramics is the foremost manufacturer of Ceramic Decanter in the world supplying over 2,500,000 bottles per year to the spirits industry, predominantly Scottish Whiskey.All the products are manufactured in Stoke-on-Trent in the brand new state of the art facility opened in 2010.The products can be seen in almost every airport all over the world and is an icon for the ceramics industry in Stoke-on-Trent.
- ABOVE : York Hand Made Bricks "Old Clamp Blend" & "Specials"
York Hand Made Bricks
The York Handmade Brick Company is based in Alne just north of York and has been making bricks here for over 70 years. Since 1988 when the company was established, we have spent almost £2million in building and maintaining the most up-to-date facilities for producing our individual, handmade products. York Handmade Brick has received wide acclaim for its products, winning awards such as the Supreme Brick Award, Craftsmanship Award and Public Building Award. Our range now extends beyond handmade bricks: terracotta floor tiles, landscape pavers, garden edgings and various specials are proving popular additions. Examples of our products can be seen in our new showroom, with various ancillary materials - mortars, pipes, gutters and other related fittings.
Old Clamp Blend
York Handmade Brick’s Old Clamp Bend demonstrates how Britain can still manufacture in 2011 bricks of the beauty and appeal of bricks made over a century ago. The random texture, shades of colour as well as the variation of the attributes between different bricks leaves a perception that these bricks are a cladding system of genuine charm and character as well as all the benefits that are associated with a brick manufactured with the assistance of some of the best technology available to the ceramic industry in Europe 2011.
This product demonstrates the versatility of brick and how the UK can manufacture ceramic products to the highest specification of even the most imaginative designers. It can be tailored to a range of colours, sizes and textures allowing building designers to reinforce their vision for the building by appropriate cladding material. The Maxima product combines an unusual size and colour with a weathered texture leaving the observer with the impression that the building spans the divide between the cultured sophistication of the historic and the bold energy of the modern.