Moorcroft pottery dating

As Walter Moorcroft gained in confidence, he developed his own style of design and, as post-war restrictions were lifted on home sales, he introduced a highly successful range of patterns, including Columbine, Hibiscus, Tiger Lily, Arum Lily, Bougainvillaea and, later, Bermuda Lily and Magnolia.

He also developed a new firing technique known as flambe reduction, which proved highly effective, helping Moorcroft pottery to develop its characteristic style.

In September 1945 his father suffered a stroke, and Moorcroft was granted compassionate leave.

His father died two weeks later and Moorcroft assumed control of the pottery.

Export orders were important to the national economy and, using his father's designs, Moorcroft ensured that full production went ahead.

Moorcroft pottery had always been well-received abroad, particularly in Canada.

Today, a studio of six world class designers led by Rachel Bishop follow the example of their predecessors and together keep Moorcroft design moving forward to maintain the art pottery's tradition of design excellence.

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Moorcroft rightly regards the United States as one of its oldest and most loyal customers.

Before long, Moorcroft pottery began to achieve "antique" status and became sought by collectors.

This development was to become a great source of pride to Walter Moorcroft.

Walter Moorcroft, who has died aged 85, ran his family business - Moorcroft Pottery - for 40 years after the war; during this period, he single-handedly carried out all the management roles in the factory, including production, personnel, finance and sales.

Walter Moorcroft was born on February 12 1917; his father William had established the family pottery at Burslem, Stoke-on-Trent, in 1913 with financial backing from Liberty's of Regent Street, and in 1935 Walter joined the business direct from Rugby School.

Walter did not receive a salary, but his father paid his golf club bills, his tailor, his first-class travel and his skiing holidays while, at home, the cook served dinner.

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