Poole Pottery

Art Deco ceramics have always been much sought after, but as prices for these are now rather steep, enthusiasts are examining other wares. Although unfashionable until a few years ago, ceramics made in the Poole Pottery mad in the Poole factory in Dorset during the 1950s, 60s and 70s are beginning to attract a lot of attention.

These later pieces, just like their Art Deco forerunners, perfectly encapsulate the distinctive styles of the era in which they were made and they are of a very good quality.

The company was originally founded in 1873 as Carter & Co and was known for its tiles and flooring.  It expanded into studio art pottery in 1921, trading as ‘Carter, Stabler and Adams’ (CSA) until 1963, when it became ‘Poole Pottery Ltd’.  Although there were several name changes, all the pottery produced by this factory is commonly referred to as Poole Pottery.

Poole Pottery is easy to identify.  Early examples from 1873-1921 are marked ‘Carter and Company’ or ‘Carter Poole’ on the base.  From 1921-1963 they bear the ‘Poole England’ mark and thereafter ‘Poole Pottery Ltd’.  Many pieces also bear the decorator’s monogram.

Very many of the pre-war Art Deco designs are hand-thrown stoneware with a matt, greyish-white glaze.  Some are hand decorated in just one or two colours, but generally the most desirable ones have geometric and floral motifs, sometimes incorporating animals, in combinations of rich reds, blues, greens and yellows.  The price range is somewhere between £100-£2,000, depending on the rarity of the design and who created or painted it.  Pieces conceived by Truda Carter or painted by Gwen Haskins fetch particularly high prices.

Of the post-war designs, the hand-thrown, hand-painted ‘freeform’ and ‘contemporary’ style pieces by Guy Sydenham and Alfred Read display the distinctive, fluid forms, bold abstract patterns and striking colours of art pottery of the period.  These qualities are also evident in the studio wares developed post-1958 by Robert Jefferson, especially in the brightly coloured Delphis and Aegean ranges.  These are priced between £100-£800, lower than the pieces from the Art Deco era, but they are beginning to catch up.  Now would probably be a good time to buy 

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