Master Potter Alan White celebrated 50 years of ‘potting’ at Poole Pottery last month.
Alan is a familiar face to visitors of Poole Pottery’s working studio, where he can often be seen ‘throwing’ at his wheel, helping to create new pieces for the Poole portfolio as well as his own designs which are sold in the Poole Pottery Shop.
He has also made numerous TV appearances on BBC TV series including family game show ‘The Generation Game’ , ‘Antiques Road Trip’ with Scottish antiques expert Anita Manning and ‘Great British Railway Journeys’ presented by Michael Portillo.
In addition, visitors come from far and wide to commission his ware to mark special events. So it was only fitting that his commission in June was to make a special piece to mark his own anniversary!
Alan commented: “When I started as a potter I never would have expected to my career to have taken me in so many directions. In 1979 I ‘threw’ pots for the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh when they visited Poole Pottery. I’ve also gained the confidence to talk to large groups of people. I taught at Southampton College for seven years; when I started at the pottery I was quite shy!”
He concluded: “It’s great to see Poole Pottery doing well again and bringing out lots of new products and colourways. I joined the Pottery in 1966 when we won the World Cup and I intend to leave when we win it again!”
All new Poole Pottery ceramic designs start life in the Dorset town of Poole town itself. When a design has been created, the process is passed to a production team in Staffordshire which manufactures Poole ceramics at the Middleport Pottery in Stoke-on-Trent, as part of the Burgess & Leigh Ltd group of brands which includes Burleigh Pottery and Hartley Greens & Co.
Alan White at his potter’s wheel