Gerry Grant

Gerry Grant
On The Wheel

Monday, 20 February 2017

The formative years

1977 was a good year to set up a pottery. The whole country was into self sufficiency and the good life and adored anything hand made - so much so that almost anything sold! There was no competition from China and Sunday Trading was unheard of. But what made it for us was the fact that it was also the Queen's Silver Jubilee - 25 years of her reign.
The whole country was in celebratory mood and parish councils, village schools and organisations wanted mementoes to commemorate the day. So....they came to us. We began to make mugs with embelms on. The emblems were made from moulds which Gerry had made. Soft clay was pressed into a mould, removed and left to dry a little, before being stuck onto the side of a mug.
 A pint Jubilee mug - bought back from the Oxfam shop in Pocklington , 2 years ago!








Throughout the year we were kept busy making souvenirs for the Jubilee, and then the year finished and we were left wondering what to do next.

Gerry realised he was quite good at doing this and saw a gap in the market for hand made souvenir pots, with an emblem on, and of a good quality (though looking at the badly designed mug above - you wouldn't have thought that!). It wasn't long before this became our "bread and butter" in the pottery. We were able to make a living doing this sort of pottery. Gerry didn't have to go out and supplement his income  - making pots full time is what he wanted to do and this was a means of doing it.
A plate for a tourist site in Orkney.





A goblet for the Jorvik Viking Centre






















At the same time he made larger items more suited towards the gallery market. We still do this split today. We make pots for the Jorvik Viking Centre, Iona Abbey, Durham Cathedral, Mousie Thompson, St David's Cathedral and smaller craft outlets throughout the UK, while making larger - perhaps more "arty?" pieces for exhibitions and galleries.

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