Founded in Worcester, England in 1751, the Royal Worcester factory was established on the banks of the River Severn by a group of local businessmen, with the guidance of Dr John Wall, a physician. Dr. Wall along with another of the group, apothecary William Davis, developed their method for producing porcelain. Dr. Wall secured the sum of ?4500 from the partners to establish the factory in Worcester and those original partnership deeds are still housed in the Museum of Worcester Porcelain.
In 1783, the Worcester porcelain factory was purchased by Thomas Flight, the former London sales agent for the concern. He purchased the factory for ?3000 from the former owners. He let his two sons run the concern, with John Flight taking the lead role till his father's death in 1792. Knowledge of this period is largely a result of the excellent diary that John Flight kept from 1785-1791. This is discussed in detail in Appendix III of Flight & Barr Worcester Porcelain by Henry Sandon.
During this period, the factory was in poor repair. Production was limited to low-end patterns of mostly Blue and White porcelains after Chinese porcelain designs of the period. It was also pressured by competition from inexpensive Chinese export porcelains, and from Thomas Turner?s Caughley (pronounced "Calf-ley") Factory.
Female side of Aesthetic teapot designed by R. W. Binns and modeled by James Hadley, 1881.
Martin Barr joined the firm as a partner in 1792; porcelains of this period are often identified by an incised capital "B" and, later, by more elaborate printed and impressed marks.
Thomas Flight died in 1800, leaving the factory in the hands of his son Joseph Flight and Martin Barr. Barr?s sons Martin Barr Jr. and George Barr were being prepared at that time to run the factory.
The factory received a royal warrant from King George III in 1789 during his visit to the city. Others followed, including a Royal Warrant by the Prince of Wales in 1807, another granted by the Princess of Wales in 1808. The factory is still in service to the crown, by appointment to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.
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