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Many ceramics are collectable, but not all are of historic interest. To be considered for historic interest ceramics must meet the following conditions:

  • they must have a certain rarity value
  • they are not normally still being used for their original purpose
  • when they are bought and sold, the transaction is of a special nature that’s significantly different from the normal trade in similar utility articles
  • they are of high monetary value
  • they illustrate a significant step in the evolution of human achievements or a period of that evolution. For example, this may be the use of a new ceramic production technique or the ceramic piece itself might represent a period of human history

There are certain ceramic designers and makers whose work is considered to be of historic interest. Some of these designers and makers – along with details of their most important pieces of work – are listed below.

Burleigh Ware

Burleigh Ware of historical interest includes:

  • the relatively common parrot and kingfisher handles
  • the rarer cricketer, tennis player, golfer and soldier of the 1930s
  • the 1940s toby jug depicting Sir Winston Churchill with a bulldog peeping out from between his legs


Pieces of the Art Deco period.

Clarice Cliff

The Bizarre, Fantasque, Crocus and Applique pieces produced between 1928 and 1936.

Crown Devon

All pieces from the 1930s.

Hans Coper

All statues.

John Ruskin Pottery

All pieces.


The Cannes design by British architect Sir Hugh Casson, who played an important part in the Festival of Britain.


Pieces designed by William Moorcroft between 1913 and 1945.

Poole pottery

Poole pottery of particular significance includes:

  • the work of Art Deco designers John Adams and Truda Carter, and Harold and Phoebe Stabler from the 1920s and 1930s
  • pieces from the 1950s
  • the Delphis range made in the 1960s and 1970s
  • the Studio Ware range by designer and maker Robert Jefferson, who opened a branch of the pottery to produce experimental pieces

Rosenthal of Bavaria

All pieces.

Royal Doulton

Royal Doulton pieces of historical interest include:

  • the Toucan that was produced between 1920 and 1946. Although it had a long production run, it was not a popular piece at the time and is now rare and highly sought after
  • the figure designed in 1919 by sculptress Phoebe Stabler

Susie Cooper

Pieces produced in the 1930s.

TG Green

Cornish Ware produced between 1928 and 1960.

The Shelley factory

Art Deco tableware pieces, in particular the ranges of children’s wares designed by Mabel Lucie Atwell.

The Goldscheider factory

Art Deco figurines produced in the 1920s and 1930s.


The three polar bears on an ice floe produced in the 1950s. This is a rare example and fetches high prices.


The pigs produced in the 1930s.

Commemorative jugs of Edward Heath and Harold Wilson from the 1970s are also considered to be of historical interest because there’s so little commemorative ware relating to these two British Prime Ministers.