J H Weatherby & Sons (Ltd)






 

Location and period of operation:

J H Weatherby & Sons (Ltd)

Tunstall

Hanley

1891

1892

1892

April 2000

 

Earthenware manufacturer at Tunstall (1891) and then at Hanley, Stoke-on-Trent, England.
  • In 1882 John Henry Weatherby was a junior partner in the earthenware company of Whittaker, Edge & Co. at the Hall Fields pottery which was newly built in Hanley. 

  • In 1891 John Henry Weatherby left the Whittaker partnership and for a year operated on his own account from part of the Pinnox Works in the nearby town of Tunstall. 

  • Between August 1891 and April 1892 Weatherby registed four pattern designs while they were at the Pinnox Works in Tunstall.

  • Early 1892 Weatherby transfered his business was to the existing Falcon Works in the High Street, Hanley - this works was adjacent to the Hall Fields pottery where he had previously been a partner.  

  • The first pattern design registered at the Falcon Pottery was in November 1892. 

  • In 1892 the works had 4 kilns and one in the process of being built, by 1900 there were 8 kilns and in 1906 a large entrance range was built to the works with 3 stories and 23 bays. From 1925 to 1961 there were 5 bottle kilns, these were replace by electric kilns following the Clean Air Acts of 1956 and 1968.  One of the coal fired kilns was retained, having being last fired in 1965, and in 1989 this became a listed building. By 2012 the outside brickwork of this remaining kiln had collapsed.  

  • The works remained operational during the Second World War under the Domestic Pottery (Manufacture and Supply) Order. In 1947 John H Weatherby was the Managing Director and J. S. Weatherby the Sales Manager. 

  • Weatherby first made domestic ware such as basins and ewers, later moving into tableware and giftware.

  • In the 1950s a number of pottery companies began to make a range of animals hoping that people would go on to collect several in a set. Weatherby produced a series of sturdy comical animals which they called Zookies. An advertising leaflet from 1957 read "People who buy one, buy another and another and buy them for their friends too!". Weatherby made Zookies into the 1960s, but by 1970 production had ceased.

  • They also produced such items as 'Chuckleheads' (cups and saucers shaped like animals), 'Beasties' (dinosaurs), commemorative items, dwarf figurines and tableware (including a range of small trays) often decorated with 1960s favourite images such as gonks and daleks. 

  • In 1960 John S. Weatherby and John L. Weatherby were listed as Joint Managing Directors and J. S. Weatherby as the Sales Manager. 

  • The company also entered the market for hotelware – which eventually contributed ultimately to its downfall from tough competition from home and abroad.

  • Weatherby were prolific manufacturers producing 1000s of patterns ranging from white ironstone, collectables and dinner ware through to souvenir ware and Fortnum & Mason pudding bowls.  

  • From 1975 to 2000 Weatherby also produced ware for the American importers JONROTH. The pieces are mostly not marked Weatherby, but carry the JONROTH mark alone. JONROTH took the last order produced by J. H. Weatherby & Sons in April 2000

  • In April 2000 the company chairman, Christopher Weatherby, the great-great grandson of company founder John Henry Weatherby, announced the winding up of the company. At its height the company employed 200, but the figure was down to 50 in 1999 and stood at 10 at the time of closure. 

  • After the closure of J.H.Weatherby in 2000 Jonathan Weatherby took over producing for JONROTH, working with a very limited staff at the Falcon Pottery - operating as a decorator under the name of Jonathan Weatherby at Falcon Pottery. 

 

NOTE: The Weatherby FALCON Works in Hanley had no connection with the following companies:

 


 


Weatherby J. H., & Sons,
earth'ware manufacturers
Falcon Pottery

from..... 1907 Staffordshire Sentinel 
'Business Reference Guide to The Potteries, Newcastle & District'

 

 


 


"Non-Crazing" Earthenware
manufactured by 
J. H. Weatherby & Sons, Ltd.

1917 advert
The Pottery Gazette Diary, 1917
 


 

 
Weatherby and Royal Falcon
Quality Earthenware
J. H. Weatherby & Sons, Ltd.

1947 advert
The Pottery Gazette Directory, 1947
 

 


 


J H Weatherby & Sons 

 

   

 


 

 
Wash bowl and jug in the Daisy pattern produced by Weatherby in 1891 
when  they were based at the Pinnox Works in Tunstall 

 


 


White ironstone casserole in the Wheat design 

marked - Royal Crownford

 




Woodpecker salad bowl

marked - Royal Falcon Ware

carries the registration number 793820 
which was first registered in 1934


 


sauce boat produced under the Wartime Concentration Scheme  
marked with the letter B 


 


crested catering ware 

produced in the 1980s 

 


 

Weatherby Zookies
"People who buy one, buy another and another and buy them for their friends too!"

In the 1950s a number of pottery companies began to make a range of animals hoping that people would go on to collect several in a set. Weatherby produced a series of sturdy comical animals which they called Zookies. An advertising leaflet from 1957 read "People who buy one, buy another and another and buy them for their friends too!". Weatherby made Zookies into the 1960s, but by 1970 production had ceased.

 



Weatherby Dwarfs


 

 

Weatherby Chuckleheads were a range of cups and saucers shaped like animals


 

 

Marks used on ware for identification:

J H W & SONS

WEATHERBY


Trade Names: 

DURABILITY
used from 1891+ 

FALCON WARE
introduced in 1925+ 

FALCONA WARE


ROYAL FALCON WARE

 

ROYAL FALCON IRONSTONE

 

ROYAL CROWNFORD

 

ROYAL CROWNFORD IRONSTONE

 


 


Durability
J.H.W. & Sons
Tunstall
England

DAISY is the pattern name 

 

Printed mark used 1891, early 1892 only 
when Weatherby were at Tunstall

In 1892 the business moved to Hanley


 

 
J.H.W. & Sons
Hanley
England

Printed mark introduced 1892 and used until c1925 when 'Falcon Ware' was added
used with and without 'Semi Porcelain'

'Chelsea' and 'Welbeck' were pattern names

the number 461702 shows that the pattern was first registered in 1905

 


 


White Wheat 
Weatherby Hanley England

mark used on white ironstone ware 

c. 1890s to 1920s


 


Falcon Ware
J H W & Sons
Hanley
England

 1928+ 




Weatherby Ware

 1936+ 


 

Typical variations of marks using 'Royal Falcon Ware' and 'Falcona Ware' 

c.1934+


 


Weatherby
Hanley
England

mark used on ware produced under 
the Wartime Concentration Scheme  

 


 

 

marks used on the Weatherby animals called 'Zookies'
introduced in the 1950s and continued in the 60s

 


 


London Pride 
J.H. Weatherby & Sons Ltd
Hanley England

Reproduced from genuine hand engravings, and Made In Staffordshire, the home of fine English pottery

London Pride were a series of blue & white transferware souvenir ware pieces of London landmarks

some pieces have the London Pride mark overstamped on the regular Weatherby mark

on this example the "2-76" is the date of manufacture - Feb 1976



 


Weatherby
Hanley
England
Royal 
Falcon Ware

"1 68" is the date of manufacture - Jan 1968


Royal Falcon Ironstone
Weatherby
Hanley
England

"1 92" is the date of manufacture - Jan 1992

 


 


Weatherby
Royal Falcon
Gift Ware
Stoke-on-Trent
England
Est 1891

 



FALCON POTTERY
J H Weatherby & Sons

 


The Weatherby Falcon Works - from a 1913 letterhead

- click for more on the Falcon Works -

 


 

Another famous pottery to close

Article from the Sentinel Newspaper April 27th 2000 
By Business Reporter Stephen Houghton

One of the last remaining family-owned pottery firms is to close after more than a century.

J H Weatherby and Sons in Hanley is currently being run down and is will soon cease trading after 109 years.

Its chairman, Christopher Weatherby, the great-great grandson of company founder John Henry Weatherby, today blamed cut-throat competition in the hotelware business for the firm's decline.

At its height the company employed 200, but the figure was down to 50 at the turn of the year and now stands at 10.

Mr Weatherby said: ‘‘We have decided to cease trading and are in the process of finishing off stock and things like that. Basically we've decided to close down before someone else forced us to – while we are solvent rather than insolvent."

‘‘It's really upsetting. One of the main reasons is for the employees who work here.
We have had two or three generations of people working here and one of the things I've found warming is their reaction to this.‘‘They have been very sympathetic and understanding. Everyone who works here has been very happy here.''

The company was founded in Tunstall in 1891 and moved to Hanley the following year.

It first made domestic ware such as basins and ewers, later moving into tableware and giftware.

The firm also entered the market for hotelware – leading ultimately to its downfall. Mr Weatherby pointed to tough competition from home and abroad for the company's current problems.
These included pressure on prices owing to ‘‘block production'' and the concentration of the business in relatively few hands.

The 59-year-old added: ‘‘The hotel part of it was more fragmented. That has been changing and it's relying on more standard patterns.''

Mr Weatherby admitted the firm had even considered importing cheaper products from abroad, but was deterred because of the high volumes needed to make the operation profitable.

This route was controversially followed by another failed family firm, James Sadler and Sons.
Although the Burslem-based family firm went under earlier this year with the loss of 140 jobs, James Sadler Imports Limited continues to trade.

Mr Weatherby also partly blamed a planning issue dating back to the early 1970s, which ‘‘blighted'' the family firm and restricted investment in it.

 

 


Questions, comments, contributions?  email: Steve Birks