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“Friendly welcome from volunteers passionate about china”

The Spode Museum Trust Heritage Centre
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: The Spode Museum Trust Heritage Centre opened in 2012 in one of the period buildings on the Spode site in Stoke. It was doubled in size in 2016 and is scheduled to expand further in 2017, with improved visitor facilities, new displays and activities and an enlarged museum shop. As one of the most important factories from the Industrial Revolution, the Heritage Centre tells the story of Spode and its importance to Stoke over the 230 years of its operation, with displays of its history, working conditions and people and of its products from the 1770s up to the time it closed in 2008, when Spode was still producing world class hand-painted ceramic wares (some badged as Royal Worcester). Activities at the Centre include demonstrations by highly skilled former Spode employees of china painting and printing on antique machinery from original copperplates. The Spode Museum Trust Heritage Centre is open from 31st March 2017 on Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Bank Holiday Mondays from 10.30am to 4.00 pm. The Centre is open for Parties and Groups by appointment at any time. Please contact the Centre direct to making a booking. Admission to the Heritage Centre is free and includes the main Exhibition, the demonstrations and the Visitor Shop. Guided tours of the Blue Room and of the factory site are available at all times at a small charge. The Heritage Centre Shop sells antique and vintage Spode and Copeland ceramics and high quality art prints reproduced from the Copper plates in the Spode Museum Trust archives, ceramic related reference books and much more. Please Like Us on Facebook
State College, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
40 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“Friendly welcome from volunteers passionate about china”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 20, 2013

It was disappointing to learn about the closing of the former Spode Museum and the general decline in the Potteries towns due to factory closings and overseas outsourcing in the last decade, but the warm welcome we received from the ladies at the Spode Visitors Centre was delightful; they even asked if we wanted tea, so made some for us (my cousin and me) and put out biscuits (cookies). We had an enjoyable time perusing the cabinets of hand-painted china, ironstone transferware, historic shards, equipment (molds, lathe, print roller machine, etc.), and viewing short films about the process of making china and transferware that included former employees and the late Robert Copeland. An especial delight was meeting a volunteer and retired employee, David Bailey, who was formerly with Minton and Spode, and seeing him paint by hand gold slip on partially fired fine china. It made me sad to know that such talent was no longer being fostered to the same extent as before. At least, Portmeirion has purchased many Spode and Royal Worcester patterns and now having some of those again made there locally. Metered parking is available across the street.

Visited July 2013
4 Thank Esther B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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31 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
Level Contributor
42 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 22, 2013

The exhibition is small but rich in information and fantastic history. It is temporary at the moment but with the hope of becoming permanent on the grounds of the old factory.

Meeting Pauline, one of the original paintresses was wonderful and she has some great stories.

Go and visit and support all the hard work that the team are doing, it would be a tragedy for this centre not to continue!!

Visited April 2013
4 Thank 0X0
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stoke-on-Trent, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Spode visitor centre a must”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 21, 2013

This is a fantastic experience for older and the young. It is full of memories and experiences with a warm atmosphere. Its a trip down memory lane and Pauline shows you how! Not to be missed. We thoroughly enjoyed it. Old photographs are needed if anyone has some for the collection. These are copied and returned to you. You can also share your working memories with the staff too who are absolutely lovely.

Visited April 2013
5 Thank Bulldogs100
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Newcastle-under-Lyme, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
120 reviews
62 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 76 helpful votes
“Open again, but ask for a guided tour round the site too”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 19, 2013

Museum was closed in February 2013 but is now (April 2013) open again on Fridays & Saturdays. There is not a whole lot to see - what shown in the photos here is all there is - so a twenty minute guided tour round the site makes it more worthwhile.
Plus points
Knowledgeable and very enthusiastic volunteers; the person demonstrating hand painting on china was a fund of expertise. Some historical curiosities on the site too.
Minus points
Not too easy to find and rather dilapidated location. It helps to be knowledgeable or at least curious about ceramics or Spode pottery in particular before you arrive. A bigger range of exhibits would improve things.

Visited April 2013
4 Thank ArbieP
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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