New Hall Works, Shelton
also see a 1956 article on the New Hall Pottery
New Hall Works from an 1898 OS map
From Jewitt's "Ceramic Art of Great Britain, 1800-1900":-
The New Hall Works Historically interesting. The company consisted of Samuel Hollins of Shelton, Anthony Keeling of Tunstall, John Turner of Lane End, Jacob Warburton of Hot Lane, William Clowes of Port Hill, and Charles Bagnall of Shelton. The company traded under various styles: Hollins, Warburton, Daniel & Co., etc. Of the six persons concerned, the following are brief details:
Samuel Hollins, a maker of fine red-ware tea- pots, etc. (from the clay at Bradwell previously worked by the brothers Elers) at Shelton, was the son of Mr. Hollins of the Upper Green, Hanley. He was an excellent practical potter who made many improvements in his art. He was afterwards one of the partners of the New Hall China Works. His successors in the Hollins manufactory were his sons, trading as Messrs. T. & J. Hollins during the 1795 – 1820 period.
Anthony Keeling, of Tunstall, was son-in-law of the celebrated potter Enoch Booth, having married his daughter Ann. Keeling succeeded Enoch Booth in his business, which he carried on successfully for many years. He erected a large house near the works. In 1810, he retired to Liverpool, where he died.
John Turner, first of Stoke and then of Lane End, father of John and William Turner, was one of the cleverest and most successful potters Staffordshire ever produced. In 1762, he commenced manufacturing at Lane End and made many improvements in the art. By the discovery of a vein of fine clay at Dock Green, he was enabled to compete successfully not only with other potters but also with Wedgwood himself. Many of his productions in black and in jasper, etc. equal those of Wedgwood and are some- times mistaken for them. Turner's creamware and stoneware (of which his jugs are best known to collectors) rank high in excellence of both design and manipulation.
Jacob Warburton of Hot, or Holt, Lane – a man highly respected by every class, and who lived until the year 1826 – was born in 1740 and passed his long and useful life as a potter, in which art he rose to considerable eminence.
William Clowes of Port Hill, was, it is said, only a sleeping partner in the concern. In 1787, Clowes & Williamson were "potters" at Fenton.
Charles Bagnall, of Shelton, who had previously been with Joshua Heath, was a potter of considerable experience in the middle of the eighteenth century. He was probably a son of the potter of the same name who was a maker of butter-pots in Burslem in about 1710. The family has been connected with Staffordshire for many generations.
The New Hall Company, being thus formed, purchased the patent-rights for hard-paste porcelain from Richard Champion of Bristol. The first operations were conducted at the works of one of the partners, Anthony Keeling, at Tunstall, which was then a mere small street, or rather roadway, with only a few houses – probably not more than a score – scattered about it and the lanes leading to Chatterley and Red Street. To accommodate the new branch of manufacture at Keeling's pot-works some alterations became necessary, and thus it was some little time before the partners had the satisfaction of seeing anything produced under their patent-right.
Disagreements also arose, which ended in Turner and Keeling withdrawing from the concern; and, in about 1780, Keeling is said to have removed to London. The remaining partners removed their work from Keeling's premises and took a house in Shelton, known as Shelton Hall – afterwards the New Hall in contradistinction to the Old Hall. At this time, Shelton Hall, which had been purchased in 1773 by Humphrey Palmer, was occupied by his son, Thomas Palmer, as a pot- works.
In 1777, Humphrey Palmer, intending a second marriage – with Hannah Ashwin of Stratford-on-Avon – gave a rent charge of £30 on the Hall and pot-works and a life interest in the rest of the estate as a dower to that lady, reserving the right for his son, Thomas Palmer the potter, to get clay and marl from any part of the estate for his own use. In 1789, Humphrey Palmer and his wife being both dead, the estate passed to their infant and only child, Mary Palmer, of whose successor's executors, after some uninteresting changes, it was ultimately purchased by the china manufacturers.
At this time, the works had been considerably increased; and they grew gradually larger, till, in 1802, they are described as three messuages, three pot-works, one garden, fifty acres of land, thirty acres of meadow, and forty acres of pasture. Fairly settled at New Hall, the company (Hollins, Warburton & Co.) took as their manager John Daniel, who afterwards became a partner. A considerable quantity of china was produced under the patent, but the most extensive and profitable branch of the New Hall business was reputedly the making and vending of glaze (or body) called 'composition', made according to Champion's specification and supplied by the New Hall firm to the potters of the neighbourhood, and even sent to other localities, at a highly remunerative price.
In 1810, the firm (Samuel Hollins of Shelton; Peter Warburton, son of Jacob Warburton of Cobridge; John Daniel of Hanley; and William Clowes of Port Hill) purchased the New Hall estate for £6,800. In 1813, Peter Warburton died, leaving his share in the works to his father (Jacob Warburton) and John Daniel as trustees under his will. In 1821, John Daniel died, and two years afterwards Clowes also died.
Hard-paste porcelain continued to be made at New Hall until about 1812, when bone paste – which had been gradually making its way in the district – finally superseded it; and the company continued their works on the newer system. In 1835, the entire stock of the concern, which had for a short time been carried on for the firm by a Mr. Tittensor, was sold off and the manufacture of china entirely ceased at New Hall.
The early specimens of New Hall porcelain are mainly unmarked or bear only the painted pattern number prefixed by 'N' or 'No'; but of course, other firms also marked their ware in a similar fashion. The body is of good colour and clear, and the decorations, especially the flowered examples, are remarkable for the brightness of their colours. The printed mark used with the pattern number – and this was not, it appears, adopted until about 1812 – is the one shown here. But printing was practised at New Hall and some remarkably good examples have come under my notice.
A New Hall porcelain teapot, of typical form
bearing the date 1803. 6 inches High.
In the Victoria & Albert Museum (Crown copyright)
The reader is referred to G E Stringer's New Hall Porcelain (Art Trade Press Ltd., London, 1949) for a detailed history of the works and illustrations of typical specimens. A more recent work is D. Holgate's New Hall Porcelain and its Imitators (Faber & Faber, London, 1971).
The works, after having been closed for a short time, were opened by William Ratcliffe, who for a few years made the commoner description of white and printed earthenware for ordinary home consumption.
In 1842, they passed into the hands of W. Hackwood & Son, who removed from their works near Joiner Square (later called the Eastwood Pottery); and in 1849, Mr. Hackwood senior having died, they were continued by his son, Thomas Hackwood. The goods were various descriptions of earthenware, principally for Continental markets, and bore the name HACKWOOD impressed.
In 1856, the works passed into the hands of Cockson & Harding, who manufactured the same kind of goods, using the mark C & H, LATE HACKWOOD impressed on the bottom. In 1862, Mr. Cockson having retired from the concern, the works were carried on by the remaining partners – the brothers W. & J. Harding who, besides an extensive trade with Holland and Italy in cream-coloured printed ware, produced druggists' fittings as well as Egyptian black, Rockingham and tinted ware.
In 1869, Messrs. Harding gave up the business, when John Aynsley, china manufacturer of Longton, purchased the back portion of the works and let it to Thomas Booth & Sons.
The entire front of the New Hall works was purchased by Henry Hall, metal mounter of jugs, teapots, etc., so that the manufactory became divided into two distinct properties. The portion occupied by Messrs. Booth, having been burnt down, was rebuilt. Their productions were the usual classes of ordinary earthenware in printed, painted, enamelled, and gilt services; stoneware, in which a large variety of jugs and teapots were made; and jasper ware.
They were succeeded in their business in about 1870 by Ambrose Bevington & Co., who continued the manufacture to about 1890. From 1892 to 1899, Messrs. Plant & Gilmore were working the New Hall factory.
From 1900 to 1957, the New Hall Pottery Co. Ltd. produced a wide range of earthenware including many old patterns and styles.
Questions/comments? email: Steve Birks
updated: 06 March 2003