September 19th – January 19th
2014 sees both the 250th anniversary of the beginning of industrialised potting in Swansea, and the 200th anniversary of the production of porcelain in Swansea.
While there had been potting in and around Swansea prior to 1764, at the Burrows and on the Gower, July 31st of that year saw the ground of the old copper works on the Strand leased by burgess to William Coles. Coles was a Quaker Ironmaster from Neath, who undertook to “erect a manufactory for the production of earthenware and stoneware”.
There had been experiments to produce porcelain in Swansea prior to 1814. However, it was the arrival of William Billingsley and Samuel Walker from Nantgarw, in October 1914, and the construction of a new porcelain kiln, which saw the beginning of “Swansea Porcelain” production.
This exhibition showcases the variety of wares produced in Swansea between 1764 and 1814.
The subject of ceramic production in Swansea is an enormous subject; much has been written before this exhibition, and I am sure, will be in the future.
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