Founded in 1868 by Thomas Gavin and James Ritchie, Gavin had been a potter in Glasgow and Ritchie was from Prestonpans.
The pottery had one kiln.
Ritchie was replaced by Gavin’s two sons, Hugh and John.
Thomas Gavin died in 1899 and the pottery closed in 1903.
In 1904, a partnership of a William Clarke and Joseph Smith reopened the pottery for just one year. They had come from Derbyshire.
Arthur Mills had came from the pottery town of Denby to work in the new company as a potter, and he took it over in around 1905, continuing production with his son Ivor from 1915. Ivor continued managing the pottery from 1927 until it eventually closed in 1964.
As was common with most potteries outwith the central belt, the first period produced unmarked redware, stoneware and fireclay for the domestic local market.
The Gavin period produced the most remarkable and notable wares of the pottery’s history. They produced the usual redwares, unmarked, but also made easily recognisable agate wares. Storage barrels, butter dishes, chicken-shaped penny banks and ring flasks were made from around 1880s onwards.
The dabwares in brown, green and blue are some of the most iconic pieces of Scottish pottery. Larges scrafitto personalised dairy bowls were produced, usually with brown lettering set against a white background. These bowls were also produced by Dryley’s pottery of Montrose.
Clarke and Smith’s wares were in the ‘art’ shapes of the time and sometimes have variegated glazes. They produced elegant vases as well as utilitarian wares, such as flower pots.
Arthur & Ivor Mills were known to produce horticultural wares.
The advent of plastic flower pots saw the end of the pottery.
Articles in SPHR
Articles in Bulletin (Members only)
Typical Backstamps & Marks
No marks from the first period are known. Clark and Smith, impressed, Mills, impressed
- No patterns were used