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Author Topic: A Community Skill: the Story of Burton-in-Lonsdale's Potteries 31 Mar - 01 Nov  (Read 1366 times)

Offline Anne

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A new exhibition at Settle highlights the period long ago when Burton-in-Lonsdale was the site of 11 working potteries.

'Black Burton', as it was once known, was an important centre of pottery making, producing essential wares for homes, shops and inns for 250 years.

"By 1850 there were 11 working potteries here," said Anne Read, Curator of the Museum of North Craven Life at Settle.

"Burton clay turned black, once processed for use. Workers spattered with black clay, smoky charcoal fired kilns and coal-powered steam engines explain why Burton earned its grim name, although some believe the reputation of the town alehouses, which outnumbered the potteries, was also a factor.

"The last pottery closed in 1944 and Black Burton is now transformed into the tranquil village of Burton-in-Lonsdale with just 650 residents and one remaining pub."

Traces of the industrial past can still be found on the banks of the Greta but if you visit Settle, 14 miles away down the A65, the Folly Museum has a special exhibition this year telling the story of the rise and fall of Black Burton. 'A Community Skill: the Story of Burton-in-Lonsdale Potteries' runs until November 1.

"You can learn just how tough an industry this was to work in, whether you were mining the clay, shivering in a three-feet-deep settling pan of clay and water, sizzling near the kilns heated to 1250 degrees centigrade or a skilled potter throwing the hefty 112 llb lumps of clay required for each six gallon jar," said Ms Read. "Poisonous glazes and flint dust were additional hazards. Burton’s last pottery was run by Richard Bateson and you can discover his story at The Folly or join Bentham potter Lee Cartledge, who will be giving an illustrated talk on Bateson in the Folly on June 12 at 7.30pm. Tickets are £7.

"At The Folly you can also view the largest public collection of Burton pots in Yorkshire, which include earthenware, stoneware and decorative slipware pieces such as hen-and-chickens money boxes, puzzle jugs and an example of the novelty bird whistles once sold in the seafront shops of Morecambe."

The Folly is open until November 1, but closed on Mondays and Wednesday. Opening hours are 12.30pm– 4.30pm with an early start on Tuesdays (Settle Market Day) at 10.30am.

For more details, visit http://www.ncbpt.org.uk/folly/ or telephone (015242) 51388 or (01729) 822361.

Story taken from the Westmorland Gazette site here:


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Offline user9318

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Very interesting, thank you for sharing.


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