While Royal-themed pottery made in Staffordshire can be traced back to the time of Charles II, the tradition of celebrating key events through pottery is set to continue in Stoke-on-Trent & The Potteries in 2018, thanks to the marriage of Harry & Megan in May.
Stoke-on-Trent British design brand Emma Bridgewater, for instance, has confirmed it will be producing two special commemorative mugs to celebrate the wedding of HRH Prince Harry to Meghan Markle.
Handmade in the Emma Bridgewater factory in Stoke-On-Trent, the mugs will be available in Emma Bridgewater shops, and online, from April 30 – priced at £19.95.
The first mug features elegant scripting with the groom and bride’s names and wedding date; as well as text that reads “Game changers, free spirits, big hearts & well-suited”. The mug is also adorned with a row of crowns and hearts in red and blue; and comes complete with a bespoke backstamp. The second features a classic hand-applied sponge-ware design, with the couple’s names and wedding date, as well as regal scrolls and crowns in blue and red.
Emma Bridgewater have been making commemorative ware since 1985, celebrating events such as the Diamond Jubilee using traditional techniques in our factory in Stoke-On-Trent.
Another Stoke-on-Trent manufacturer, Moorcroft, is producing a special, limited edition Betrothal design for the Royal wedding.
Moorcroft designer, Vicky Lovatt, found inspiration in the official coat of arms given to Prince Harry to celebrate his 18th birthday. The Prince himself was involved in designing the crest which unusually incorporates an emblem from his mother Princess Diana’s family arms. Harry’s unique crest is based upon the quartered arms of England, Scotland and Ireland.
Lovatt’s design sees attractive rows of coral-coloured scallops surrounding a lidded Moorcroft box which has been painted in glistening gold lustre to mark this royal occasion. Just 100 pieces of this special design will be manufactured, and it will sell for £395.
Stoke-on-Trent & The Potteries has a long tradition of producing Royal commemorative ware.
Josiah Wedgwood has been termed the world’s first marketing expert, and he recognised the selling power that Royal connections could bring his business.
Early in his career he developed a new type of cream coloured earthenware. This new ceramic body soon came to the attention of the aristocracy so much so that he was asked to make a tea set for Queen Charlotte. This was no ordinary tea set (this was the Queen after all), it came complete with candlesticks and fruit baskets, all made from his fashionable cream coloured earthenware. He presented it in 1763 and his feat was rewarded with a Royal Seal. The beautiful cream earthenware became known as Queen’s Ware and Josiah rather grandly became ‘Potter to her Majesty’.
In 1774, a dinner service was ordered from Josiah for Empress Catherine of Russia. She wanted this dinner service for use in her ‘Frog’ palace and the dinner service took on the name of the Frog Service. Several items which, for various reasons, were not sent to Empress Catherine can still be seen in the museum at The World of Wedgwood. It is the largest collection of such pieces in England.
This tradition of commemorating important Royal occasions has continued throughout the over 250 years of the Wedgwood brand with items produced to honour Queen Elizabeth and Prince Charles, as well as Prince William and Catherine.
For further details about day visits and short breaks to Stoke-on-Trent, visit www.visitstoke.co.uk.
A “ROYAL TOUR” OF STOKE-ON-TRENT AND THE POTTERIES
You will be following in the footsteps of the Royals, as countless royals have visited the Potteries over the centuries, and have also commissioned items from an area of Britain now regarded as The World Capital of Ceramics
The World of Wedgwood
The World of Wedgwood, featuring the award-winning Museum, showcases the rich history of the company with the world’s best collection of Wedgwood. Enjoy the factory tour, throw your own pot, and take lunch or afternoon tea in the Wedgwood Tea Rooms.
The Trentham Estate
This is a 725-acre site that has been completely regenerated over the last 13 years with award winning gardens, a large shopping village, and the UK’s only Monkey Forest.
Royal connections here include:
- The earliest record of Trentham is 1086 in the Doomsday Book which describes it as a “Royal Manor”.
- In 1152 Henry II reclaimed Trentham Manor for the Crown and created a Royal Deer Park, the herd of wild black fallow deer still roam Trentham today.
Overnight at The Best Western, Moat House Festival Park
Built within Josiah Wedgwood’s former home at Etruria. Josiah manufactured ware for several members of the Royal household during his lifetime in The Potteries and was given a Royal seal.
Operating out of its original brick factory in Stoke-on-Trent, England, complete with its own Grade II listed bottle oven, museum and visitor centre, Moorcroft uses the proprietary glazes and distinctive slip-trailing methods pioneered by William Moorcroft at the end of the 19th century and sanctified by a Royal Warrant. This incredibly labour-intensive process produces colourful designs of intricacy, brilliance, and clarity in the Arts and Crafts tradition.
Take the award-winning genind-the-scenes tour of this Victorian pottery factory. Not just a factory but factory shops, pottery café, secret garden and Emma’s kitchen.
Lunch can be enjoyed next to the world’s largest spotted Aga!
Potteries Museum & Art Gallery
Not only the world’s largest collection of Staffordshire ceramics but also a collection made up with various links to the Royals.