Today’s photographs are from my ‘garden’ taken on a windy, snowy day at midday.
The ‘garden’ looks like soil even in this tundra-like mode of snowy windy weather. It is actually the remains of one of the now demolished local pot banks (the local name for pottery factories). At one time they were everywhere in Stoke-on-Trent. Within a few hundred yards of where I live there were large factories like Doulton and smaller ones like Keele Street and what appears to have been dumped at the back of my flat Alfred Meakin. In Tunstall at one time there would have been more than 100 different pot banks. They were the lifeblood of this area alongside the also defunct mining and steel works. The work force were families, generation after generation up until the last generation. Now, it’s nearly all gone abroad. A few small high quality factories hang on like Moorcroft in Burslem, and a couple of factories specialising in hotel and commercial wear.
Those white flecks you can see in my ‘garden’ are broken bits of pottery, I found this bit.
I also unearth kiln furniture, the bits they used to hold the pottery in place whilst being fired, cup handles, plate edges, broken moulds. It is something to be proud of, the long history of skills and artistry, now really only on show at the Potteries Museum, not where it should be in the shops! It is now mainly just rubble.