Welcome to the official website of the Torquay Pottery Collectors Society (TPCS).
The Society was founded by the late Ian Green in 1976, and our aims are to raise the profile and the collecting of the magnificent pots produced by the Torquay and South Devon potters in the second half of the 19th Century through to the late 20th century.
You will find our site easy to navigate, and packed with information about the individual potteries and the pots that they produced. We hope that you will be inspired to start collecting yourself, and also become a member of the TPCS. The site contains details of how to become a member and the annual subscription, which is great value as every member will receive a quarterly copy of our widely envied magazine “Scandy” and most agree that the magazine is worth the annual subscription on its own.
The Society has produced many informative books and leaflets which are a boon to research and serious collectors, and details of how to purchase these publications are also contained in this website. Also, why not check out the TPCS Facebook Group? It has over 500 members who share photos and information about their Torquay Pottery, as well as engaging in lively “potty chat”. Finally, have a look at the “Events” page. The Society puts on regular meetings around the Country at Cheltenham, Kingskerswell in South Devon, Byley, Nr Middlewich in Cheshire and our AGM which is always held in Torquay in September. So enjoy our website and enjoy the TPCS, but more importantly, enjoy the pottery!
Lewis Bond TPCS Chairman
Recent updates: H F Jackson Pottery; Events; Westcountry and Candy Ware; St Marychurch Pottery revised; Babbacombe revised text; Dartmouth Early years up-dated; Devonway Pottery; Events; Babbacombe Pottery shapes and designs 1955-1962. Events; Toby Jugs in Themes; Modern pottery in Themes; Links to pottery collectors Facebook Groups.
‘Torquay Pottery’ has become the generic term covering the numerous potteries that made Art Pottery and later souvenir/household pottery, from around 1860 until the late 20th century, mainly using local sources of red Devon clay. These potteries were based within about 5 miles of Torquay, in Devon, but also include a few other West Country potteries which copied the Torquay style. They were usually established by craftsmen who had learnt or practised their skills in Torquay.
These ‘Torquay Potteries’ include Aller Vale, Watcombe, Longpark, Dartmouth, Babbacombe and Exeter. It can be confusing to new collectors that there is also a large pottery actually called Torquay Pottery, later Royal Torquay Pottery. The various potteries are all listed under the Potteries menu on this page.
So the South Devon potteries around the Torquay area are the main subject of this website although we now including many more newer South Devon and West Country potteries as many Torquay collectors are curious to know more, possibly having come across a piece of pottery at an antique fair or by inheritance as well as the novice collector. We believe that the more experienced collector will also find something of interest and quite possibly have something to share with us.
It is clear from some descriptions applied to pots for sale that these names may be interchangeable, they are not and only the experienced collector will be able to identify wares from each pottery. We hope you enjoy these pages and that your collection will be a pleasure for years to come.
The collecting of pottery is a pleasure, to hold a pot perhaps a hundred years old in nearly identical condition now as it was the day it came out of the kiln, is always a joy. Few other works of art can boast this. Furniture, paintings and drawings all degrade over the years, but pottery endures like none of these and there are still many treasures to be found.
We would ask users of this site to inter-act with us by responding to the various sections such as ‘Ancestry‘ or our ‘Help Line‘, with any information they have and wish to share. We will publish answers to help spread information to fellow collectors.
This site is run by enthusiastic collectors and is for the use of all collectors and others with an interest in these fascinating potteries.
The site was originally compiled by Peter Whight, Keith Poole and the late Michael Mapp