Iden pot for flowers

Iden pot for flowers

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Iden pot for flowers (mark)
This item is not for sale, but you will
find many that are in our  

Iden pot for flowers - 4¼" (107 mm) high.

Townsend, Dennis
 

Dennis Townsend

Dennis with his
eyes closed

Dennis Townsend (b.1933) is one of the most respected of the Rye Potters. He started work at Rye Pottery in 1947, joining David Sharp as a fellow apprentice.

His career with Rye Pottery followed much the same pattern as David Sharp's - he went away to do his National Service when he was twenty-one, at the end of his apprenticeship, but stayed for only three years when he returned. Rye pottery could not afford to support too many fully qualified potters, so he left to form Iden Pottery.

For those of you old enough to remember the BBC TV 'Interlude' footage of a potter's wheel, Dennis's hands were the ones throwing the pot.


Further Reading:
The Potteries of Rye, 1793 onwards by Carol Cashmore


 

Iden Pottery
 

Iden Pottery is best known for its stoneware, and the quality has always been excellent.

Dennis Townsend

Dennis with his
eyes closed

It was set up by Dennis Townsend at his home in Iden, a village near Rye, when he left the Rye Pottery in 1959. Due to lack of space in his garden shed workshop he moved to larger premises in 1962, and then again in 1966 to Rye, taking over the premises of Ray Everett in Conduit Hill, where he operated until its closure.

By 1968 there was a large export side to the business, and at home the wares were stocked by Heals and Harrods. In 1972 Jim Elliot bought in as a partner (Jim was later to take over Cinque Ports) and stayed until 1980. Over the years the company expanded and contracted to suit the economic climate, and managed at best to be very successful and at worst to keep its head above water.

In the early 1990s Iden were involved in a commercial venture that enabled them to supply goods for export in much larger quantities than could be handled by the pottery in Rye. Dennis's son, David, established the Oxney Green company to handle the large-scale manufacture of goods in Stoke-on-Trent. Patterns were made and hand-painted in Rye and sent to Stoke where they were mass-produced and printed with an eight-colour process that was difficult to distinguish from the hand-painted originals. The largest number of Oxney Green products went to Martha's Vineyard in the USA, but there were three other importers in America and some in Japan.

Iden pots can sometimes be dated by closely looking at the blue oxide backstamp. In 1974 a small notch was cut in the outer circle, and another each following year. Count the notches, if you can see them, and add them to 1974.

The pottery was run by Dennis and his wife, Maureen, producing mainly for the export market until the couple retired in 2002,


Further Reading:
The Potteries of Rye, 1793 onwards by Carol Cashmore


 

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