A (very) short story of a Staffordshire pottery: Roslyn China

These days, it’s a rare occasion when I can’t find information that I need on the internet.  So much so, that when this happens, I continue searching with the steadfast belief that I will eventually find a website with all of the information that I’m looking for.  The internet contains everything, doesn’t it?!

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However, for many of the smaller and once ubiquitous Staffordshire Potteries, we are often stumped and have to give up our internet search with very little information.  Roslyn China was a recent case, as we have been able to find very little information about the pottery, which made some really lovely tea and coffee sets.

Roslyn Rosebuds tea sets

We have been lucky to own a lot of beautiful pieces of Roslyn china.  The pieces have such a delicate quality that we thought that the company must have been held in high regard and that it would be easy to find information about it.

Roslyn china pink roses tea set

From what we found, it does seem that the pottery had a reputation for making carefully-finished hand-painted fine bone china.  However, the history of the company seems to have all but vanished like many other similar potteries.

Yellow and pink flower Roslyn teaset

Roslyn China was originally a trade name used by Reid and Company, which operated from 1913 to 1946 in Longton, Staffordshire.  They changed their name to Roslyn China in 1946 and continued to operate until 1963 from the Park Place Works.

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The company became a subsidiary of Royal Albert.  Interestingly when the Wild brothers (who owned Royal Albert) listed their company on the stock market in 1947 they retained control of Roslyn China Ltd, which suggests they regarded it as a valuable asset.

Roslyn yellow flower teasets

Although we couldn’t find out much more about the pottery, the building in which the pottery was based, Park Place Works, is now part of the Gladstone Pottery Museum.  The building was originally part of a larger site owned by the famous Shelley family along with the Gladstone Pottery.  Both buildings along with their seven bottle ovens were listed for protection in 1972, and the Park Place Works was renamed the Roslyn Works.

I’d really like to visit the Gladstone Pottery Museum.  The fact that the museum is based in two relatively unknown potteries makes me even more keen to visit.  The buildings and the remaining pieces of china are important remnants of an industrious past, which deserve not to be forgotten.

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