Blue Plaque unveiling on riverside marks the first site of Worcester porcelain production
The Museum of Royal Worcester and Worcester Civic Society have unveiled an official Blue Plaque to recognise and mark the location of the Warmstry House factory, the first site of porcelain production in Worcester. The unveiling took place on Saturday 9 July, with the help of BBC Antiques Roadshow expert and Museum trustee, John Sandon, accompanied by his father, Museum Patron, Henry Sandon MBE.
The Warmstry House factory was founded in 1751, by Dr John Wall and his business partners, who created a successful porcelain recipe, which didn’t crack when boiling water was poured onto it. Worcester porcelain’s reputation for quality and excellence grew from there, with the River Severn playing an important part in the transport of raw materials, such as clay and coal, and transporting finished porcelain by boat around the world.
Colin Millett, local historian, author and Friend of the Museum said ‘As a keen supporter of the Museum of Royal Worcester, I have been thrilled to work closely with Phil Douce, Chairman of the Worcester Civic Society to bring this project to fruition. I am delighted that both Henry and John Sandon who have each contributed so much to the understanding and appreciation of Worcester Porcelain we able to join us to celebrate, alongside 70 guests including former Royal Worcester workers and Museum Friends.’
Henry Sandon was actively involved in archaeological excavations on the site from 1967 onwards, where broken pieces of Worcester Porcelain, known as ‘wasters’, were found – evidence of the first site of porcelain production in Worcester.
Sophie Heath, Museum Director, said ‘It was a very special day to see this incredibly important site in the city’s porcelain heritage recognised and marked for residents and visitors. We thank the Friends of the Museum of Royal Worcester and Worcester Civic Society for their support and efforts which have made the idea a reality. Do go and take a look at Worcester’s latest Blue Plaque, you will find it on the riverside by Copenhagen Street car park and Heart of Worcestershire College.’