Hornsea Pottery


The pottery was founded in 1949 in a small terraced house by brothers Colin and Desmond Rawson with initial funding from a friend and local business man, Philip Clappison. The factory's earliest pieces were mostly designed by Colin Rawson, these included Character Jugs and posy vases with attached animal figures. Their products sold well and they moved to larger premises and took on their first employee in 1950.

Ceramics of the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s Ceramics of the 1950s-1970s were heavily influenced by both the US and Scandinavian designs becoming more fluid in shape and colourful, initially with pop-art transfer designs and then moving towards more earthy tones of the 1970s.  In the 1970s Poole pottery developed its Delphis range with bright vivid colours on earthenware plates and dishes.

Wiki info

In 1979, the number of employees rose to 460, and by 1981, it peaked at 700. However, this state of affairs did not last and after 1978 the profits plummeted owing to development costs associated with its new factory in Lancaster and production losses at its new plant. In 1980 a team from the National Westminster Bank was sent to review the management and appoint a new managing director, Mr Anthony Kusmirek who joined the company in 1975 as project director was nominated. Noel Rawson the sales director and Anthony Kusmirek the new managing director were both dismissed after attempting to redress the sales and improve the product range. In 1981 the National Westminster Bank then appointed Gordon Barker as managing director and nominated a new management team. It was during this time that John Clappison’s unique Strata trinket boxes and his People series were a produced. John was made redundant on 31 December 1984, subsequently gaining employment with Royal Doulton. The ceramic tableware market was witnessing a great change with Japanese imports flooding the American market and cheaper tableware coming into Europe. The problems continued and in April 2000 the National Westminster Bank sent in the receivers. The pottery factory no longer exists. The retail outlet shopping village known as Hornsea Freeport has traded on the main retail and touristic site ever since, whilst the old factory buildings have been demolished and the area re-developed for housing.

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