DEVON TORS POTTERY

The Devon Tors Pottery was one of the smaller potteries operating from Bovey Tracey close to site of the Bovey Tracey Pottery Company or ‘Big Bovey’ a larger and older business mostly manufacturing white clay and transfer printed ceramics. The business was started c1921 by potters Bill and Frank Bond with Bob Fry as the Admin. man. Notable employees over the years were the decorators Arthur Bowden and Joseph Nekola who had worked with his father at the Wemyss pottery in Scotland also there was Sam Shufflebotham well known for his flowers, fruit and birds. The pottery became a family business producing a good range of items including some traditional slip decorated pottery of cottages, kingfishers, flowers, scrolls and windmills, some painted in pigment paints. They also made many moulded items like Toby jugs, dogs and small animals as well as odd and unusual designs made over the years to suit changing public taste. They are well known for making the popular Widecombe Fair souvenirs decorated with sgraffito character faces and many other souvenir items by the sgraffito outline, often with coloured slip infill, as tourist attractions for Clovelly, also for pubs and cafes. They had a regular line of work producing large numbers of the small popular scent bottles for Aidees who filled them with the scent of Violets or other flowers. Some of these can be identified with a small impressed capital B (for Bovey) on the base. Like the other local potteries the business struggled to keep going during the 1960s and eventually closed towards the end of 1968.

Devon Tors Pottery was close to the Bovey Art Pottery so when ever there was short time working there was an interchange of workers between the potteries. Therefore similar styles in both thrown shapes and decorations occurred, this can make the identification of unmarked pottery difficult sometimes.

 

Devon Tors kingfisher decorated vase in relief with two handles Devon Tors jug 3” high in blue and white with coloured cartouche of Devon scene