England - Day Twelve (April 10th)

Today we toured the Burleigh factory - Middleport Pottery. As you can see, we saw a lot and took many many pictures!

Our tremendous thanks go to William and Rosemary Dorling for taking so much time to give us an excellent tour of their wonderful pottery!
(You can click on each picture to see a larger version.)

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The side of the pottery facing the street. P0011595.jpg

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The factory gate!

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P0011608.jpg Carol at her desk in the front office

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___ shows a deft hand touching up details in the Blue Asiatic Pheasants pattern P0011768.jpg

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Some of the clay used to make Burleigh pottery - it's from Newton Abbott, down south in Devon. P0011800.jpg

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P0011807.jpg The sole bottle oven left standing - there used to be three here, before the small building was here.

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The opening to the bottle oven, which had been bricked-over after it was taken out of service. The seam where the next bottle oven used to be.

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P0011817.jpg Outside view of the mangle, used to dry pieces after being dipped in glaze.

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The courtyard, with both the mangle and the remaining bottle oven in view. P0011820.jpg

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The old steam engine, which was used to power all motorized machinery until XXXX year. P0011827.jpg

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This highly-technical device is used to formulate the slip (liquid clay) it's a balance, used to ensure that some volume of slip is the correct weight

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A collection of handles waiting for teacups P0011857.jpg

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The mould used to make cup handles. A Child's Mug with a handle that didn't work :-(

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P0011890.jpg The moulding room, with many jugs and pots waiting to dry in their moulds.

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This mould is used to create the classic Burleigh teapot shape. P0011897.jpg

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P0011898.jpg It says "30 / Swansea / T/Pot"

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Several sizes of platters. Looking inside a large teapot, the XXXX is clearly visible. (This makes for a much stronger spout.)

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A demonstration of fettling, which smooths any rough edges left from the casting process. P0011905.jpg

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P0011906.jpg Large Ewers and Dutch Flower Jugs

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Quite a few of the Dutch Flower Jugs, with Large Ewers in the background. Lids for the Cube Teapot.

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P0011916.jpg This is the mould used to make a pair of Cake Servers.

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This is the other half of the mould. P0011919.jpg

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P0011920.jpg Mould for the ladles.

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Mould for the Hot Water Jug. Other half of the ladle mould.

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William displays one of the mouldmakers' jugs, which is impressively large! The mouldmakers' jugs, next to the small-looking Dutch Flower Jug (which holds 16 pints!)

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The stairs down from the moulding room show signs of over a hundred years' use! P0011935.jpg

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Bisque waiting to go into the kiln for the initial firing Looking into the red-hot kiln

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The front of one of the kilns. See the train track leading up to it -- the carts roll on that, right into the oven. P0011947.jpg

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More bisque for the kiln. An assortment of Calico and other patterns, just out of the kiln after the final firing.

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One of the carts, rolled part-way into the kiln. P0011955.jpg

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This curved wall is part of the old bottle kiln. Fired bisque, ready to go upstairs to have the print applied.

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The backstamping machine, used to apply the backstamp to some items. The Murray Curvex, used to apply the pattern to some of the concave shapes.

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The business part of the Curvex. This rubber piece picks up the pattern from the engraved plate below, then applies it to a piece of bisque - kind of like a big rubber stamp dipped in paint! P0011961.jpg

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Various pieces done by the Curvex. The glaze dipping vat.

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Looking up into the mangle - a sort of vertical drying rack that moves. More of the mangle.

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More of the mangle. P0011968.jpg

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The electric kilns, used for the intermediate firing of some pieces. Inside the electric kiln.