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History in the Making

Moorcroft’s 1919 factory was an interesting blend of avant-garde functionalism combined with the studio philosophy of William Morris and the Arts and Crafts movement. It was the first truly modern factory building in the Potteries and the first to provide one floor production. Despite the start of the First World War in 1914, demands for Moorcroft’s ware grew, and in 1915, the building was enlarged and a new bottle oven added. Shareholders, Liberty of London, wrote in February 1919 to approve building costs of £490 to enlarge the factory and a third bottle oven was added to the front of the factory in the same year and it is this bottle oven that still stands proudly above the Moorcroft factory today. In addition, in 1919 work started on two muffle kilns, one for flambé and a separate bottle oven for lustre ware.

Forty years ago, on the 20th August 1979, Moorcroft’s 1919 bottle oven was granted Grade II listed status. Our bottle oven is not only part of Moorcroft’s colourful history but also a part of Stoke-on-Trent’s too. It has witnessed great changes in the small part of the world it occupies, and from its kilns, thousands of pieces have emerged over the decades.

It was only fitting that in the 1919 bottle oven’s centenary year, that the Moorcroft Design Studio would come together to create the History In The Making Collection to celebrate the bottle oven itself and some of the wonderful pieces that have emerged from its hot interior. Each piece in the new collection comes with a special 1919-2019 backstamp. Long may it stand as a beacon, championing Moorcroft’s art pottery for another century to come.

Kaleidoscope of Colour - Plaque
Numbered Edition

Kaleidoscope of Colour PLQ3 Plaque

£390.00

When Rachel set about creating a commemorative plaque to celebrate Moorcroft’s 1919 bottle oven’s ce..

Burslem Boys - Vase
Limited Edition

Burslem Boys 393/7 Vase

£660.00

Life was hard in 1920s Burslem. The men of ‘The Mother Town’ had only a few years earlier returned f..

Factory of Flowers - Vase
Numbered Edition

Factory of Flowers 117/7 Vase

£645.00

Once the new 1919 bottle oven was up and running, production continued at a pace throughout the 1920..

peace anemone - Vase
Limited Edition

peace anemone 372/5 Vase

£445.00

By 1919, Moorcroft’s Anemone design was already in production at the factory and was to become its l..

Eventide Revisited - Vase
Numbered Edition

Eventide Revisited 162/5 Vase

£480.00

When the Moorcroft factory opened in 1913, Hazeldene was the first landscape design to emerge from t..

Waterways - Vase
Numbered Edition

Waterways 7/7 Vase

£870.00

Stoke-on-Trent is home to not one but two canals – the Trent and Mersey and the Caldon. The former t..

Arundina - Vase
Limited Edition

Arundina 95/10 Vase

£845.00

From 1918 onwards, William Moorcroft drew a dramatic range of designs which featured irises, narciss..

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