Julie McKeown Burleigh

ISBN 13: 9780903685801

Burleigh

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Burleigh, the Story of a Pottery narrates the history of Staffordshire earthenware manufacturers Burgess, Dorling & Leigh Ltd, recounting the efforts made by the family firm to develop and sustain a successful business through the variable trading conditions of Britain's ceramics industry.
The company's roots stretch back to 1862 when, as Burgess & Leigh, they took over a small pottery manufactory, established in 1851, in Burslem, 'mother town' of the Potteries. The company's earliest products were chiefly domestic table- and toilet wares, decorated with popular underglaze blue transfer printed patterns, such as Asiatic Pheasant. A successful export trade led to the building in 1888 of the Middleport Pottery, described as 'the model pottery of Staffordshire'. In 1903, under the dynamic leadership of Edmund Leigh, the company launched the global brand name by which the company's products are still known today, Burleigh Ware.
Unhappily, the recessions affecting Staffordshire's ceramic industry during the 1990s led to the five-generation family firm of Burgess & Leigh going into receivership and for a time the future of the Middleport Pottery was under threat. Fortunately, William and Rosemary Dorling, owners of The China Box Company, were able to rescue the business. Now operating as Burgess, Dorling & Leigh Ltd, the company enters a new and exciting phase of its life in the twenty-first century. It is committed to restoring and preserving not only the Grade II listed Victorian Middleport Pottery, but also the traditional skills of English pottery manufacture which earned Burgess & Leigh its worldwide reputation.

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About the Author:

Julie McKeown is the author of a popular short history of "Royal Doulton" and "Burleigh: the Story of a Pottery" which was awarded the "Antiques Trade" "Gazette" ‘ Book of the Year’ in 2003. She has worked as a historical researcher for ceramics manufacturers, including Spode, Minton and Royal Doulton where she was employed as curator of the Sir Henry Doulton Gallery. She is especially delighted to write about the ceramics at Rode, having grown up in a cottage in Rode Park. 

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