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Karen May 17th, 2000 04:53 AM

Anyone visit Stoke-on-Trent?
I am visiting London in June. I was wondering if a daytrip to Stoke-on-Trent is a worthwhile trip. The web page looks very interesting: lots of pottery and china shops. Has anyone been there?

Rick May 17th, 2000 05:33 AM

Karen, <BR> I went to school there in the late 60's; I've returned several times since. The area was known as the Black Country because of its clay plants billowing out smoke; today it's much cleaner. <BR> If you like pottery then Stoke's the place to go; I would particularly recommend a visit to Moorcroft's factory and store. <BR> I wouldn't plan on staying more than a day or two tho'! <BR> Good luck. <BR> Rick <BR>

Anastasia Watkinson May 17th, 2000 01:08 PM

Hi Karen... no offense to any folks that may live in Stoke, but ugh. I have to agree, I wouldn't plan to stay long there, if you are going to make the trip. I would have thought if you are interested in pottery and china that London would have plenty to investigate! I did some consulting up there in Stoke for awhile, and definitely would not put it high on the "must see" list for tourists, given all of the other beautiful places in Britain. <BR> <BR>Just my opinion though. <BR> <BR>Anastasia <BR> <BR> <BR>

Sheila May 17th, 2000 02:14 PM

I said something like this before about Stoke and got my head in my hands. I'll top it for you!

Sheila Feb 16th, 2001 11:42 AM


Steve Mueller Feb 16th, 2001 11:59 AM

Karen, <BR> <BR>My wife is obsessed with ceramics and porcelain, so we made the trek to Stoke-on-Trent this last November. If you are similarly obsessed, the Stoke-on-Trent area is definitely worth a visit and a daytrip might, in fact, not be enough time. The factory tours are very interesting, but often must be booked in advance (although sometimes only 30 minutes or so). <BR> <BR>If you are driving, finding all the various factory visitor centers can be confusing, and you may use up a lot of time going from factory to factory. If you are uncomfortable driving on the left, it is even worse in the congested, busy and confusing Stoke-on-Trent conurbation. <BR> <BR>Some of the factories may offer only a single tour per day (usually around 2pm), so, on a daytrip, you may have to choose which factory you would most like to tour. We spent one night there and went on the Royal Doulton tour (my wife especially likes figurines). <BR> <BR>Stoke-on-Trent, or more specifically Burslem (where we stayed), provided a very sober glimpse into British life away from the glamour/tourist towns like London, Bath, etc. The one thing that I liked about Burslem is that there were literally five Indian restaurants within one block of our hotel (The George). I also found it amusing that the people working in the Indian restaurant that we had dinner at could not understand why someone from the US would bother to visit their town. <BR> <BR>Although I agree with Anastasia that Stoke-on-Trent is not beautiful by any stretch of the imagination, I had a pretty good time there. We may even return on our next trip to England and visit the Spode and/or Wedgewood factories. <BR> <BR>Hope you have a good time.

Liz Feb 16th, 2001 04:23 PM

Would have to agree with all posters about the aesthetics (or lack thereof) in Stoke. But there are fabulous bargains at the factories. I bought an entire set of Portmeirian china for a fraction of US prices, had it shipped very breakage. The Wedgewood tour was my favorite. I didn't get to all the factories, but did a lot on a day trip and got back to London by early evening.

kathleen Feb 23rd, 2001 04:44 PM

Karen, <BR>I took the train out of Euston for the day to stoke on trent. My mistake was my guide book said there were special busses that went to each factory. Well not in October they didn't. I tried walking, but its a lot futher than you think. A car would be a lot better. I found some great buyes at the spode and wedgewood outlets. I did the royal doulton tour - it was good, but a littel depressing to see how the poor people are paid for piece work. Reminded me of what sweatshops must be like. My taxi driver's wife worked for Wedgewood for years, said they treat people better. I would do the wedgewood tour next time.

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