Saturday, 1 January 2011

Cranston Pottery - Pearl Pottery Co

Cranston Pottery is a familiar sight around the antique fairs and markets in the UK, being quite striking in design and often on large scale it is surprising that there is little or no information about dates and designers. Here is a brief summary information from pottery reference books, websites and dealer knowledge (guesses).

Cranston Pottery was a range of art pottery made at the Pearl Pottery Company of Hanley, Staffordshire. Probably made c1920's and 30's they are heavily potted items 
with tube line decoration. They are easily recognised and are marked as below. Later productions are marked Woods Tileries Hanley. Other marks include painted numbers which might be a shape/design code.
The Pearl Pottery Co Ltd were based at The Brooks Street Works, Brook Street, Hanley, Stoke on Trent; from c1892/4 until 1936. A pottery was established in Brook Str c1820 by a Mr Ralph Salt and previously operated by Wood and Bennett and others. 
The Brook Street Works were built in c.1842 by Thomas Worthington and was bombed during World War II when in the possession of the Pearl Pottery Co. Ltd. The works were closed during the war and sold in 1947.

PPCo Ltd were recorded as exhibiting at the Board of Trade British Industries Fair 1929: held at The White City, Shepherd's Bush, London W12, from 18 February to 1 March, 1929, and organised by the Department of Overseas Trade (Empire and Home Edition). The catalogue for this event states; Manufacturers of General Earthenware and Semi-Porcelain including Finest Selection of dinner and Tea Ware, with a special new Dull Glaze range of Fancies called "Cranston Ware." (Stand Nos. G.42 and F.1) They also exhibited at the 1922 Fair.

Only a few patterns have been seen and in a limited number of colour ways. The pictures illustrates the patterns and colours most often seen. I can't find any source material to help confirm dates or designers. The tubeline decoration and the Woods mark could suggest a Rhead connection.

Source references include;

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