Housing association celebrates Staffordshire’s heritage by taking people back to the Pottery Industry’s Heyday through tenants who worked in the local potbanks.

Staffordshire Housing tenant Joan, aged 88 worked in the pottery industry for over 40 years and is proud to be from Staffordshire, Joan says: “I started in the industry from the age of 14 and worked until I was 55. Over the years I worked for Johnsons and Doultons enamelling and free hand painting on pottery from cups and saucers.”

“It was such a nice industry to work in and I always felt at home. You could talk and have a laugh, we even learnt to lip read over the noise of the kilns! It was great because we all knew each other and that made it a really nice environment to work in. We’d socialise together at the end of the week and most of the girls would come in with their curlers in tow ready for the night ahead.”

The Pottery Industry has employed thousands of people in Staffordshire for over 300 years. Although the announcement of Dudson closing brings uncertainty, pottery firms like Burleigh still remain and pride themselves on providing a true experience of the history of the industry.

As Joan explains: “Years ago these kinds of jobs were all that people knew. We always thought people would need a plate to eat off and a cup to drink out of and so we never thought our jobs would be at risk.

“Staffordshire is so well known for its pottery and its part of the local history, it would be a shame to see it disappear completely. I’m so proud to have experienced the pottery industry first hand, and it fills me with such joy when I turn a plate over and see made in Staffordshire.”

Staffordshire Housing provides 3000 homes for a variety of people with a variety of needs and has 5 over 55’s villages.

Janet Garner, activity co-ordinator for Staffordshire Housing says: “I’m very proud to be a Stokie. When I was growing up I was surrounded by people who worked in the numerous pot banks around the City”.

“Times were tough but people looked after each other and shared what they had. Here at Staffordshire Housing we’re proud as punch of our local area and we pride ourselves on making an impact. We’re so lucky to have residents that have experienced the Pottery Industry in its heyday, and so we want to celebrate them and the local area.”

Staffordshire Day is on the 1st of May 2019 and aims to celebrate all things Staffordshire to find out how you can celebrate Staffordshire day by going to www.enjoystaffordshire.com/whats-on/staffordshire-day.

To find out more about Staffordshire Housing over 50’s assisted living, go to www.staffshousing.org.uk/rentahome/over-50s/