The first pieces of Moorcroft pottery were made in 1897 by William Moorcroft, a designer working for large ceramics company James Macintyre and Co. In 1904, Moorcroft won a gold medal at the St Louis International Exhibition and in 1913, William Moorcroft split from James Macintyre and set up his own company in Burslem, Stoke-on-Trent (in premises it still occupies today). In 1928 Moorcroft were appointed potters to the Queen. Although the Moorcroft family are no longer associated with the business, the company is still in business and still privately owned.
Moorcroft designs tend to sell well at auction, and prices have increased in recent years since the Edwards family took over the company. With its bold colours and designs, Moorcroft pottery appeals to a wide range of collectors; many museums, including the V&A, have pieces of Moorcroft pottery in their permanent exhibits.
As with all pottery, the value of Moorcroft is largely dependent on the age and condition of the individual piece. The most sought after items are those made prior to 1945 by William Moorcroft himself and bearing his signature. Early designs such as Claremont, Poppy and Iris from the 1900s to 1920s are always popular.
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