Belleek Pottery and Belleek Marks
You may have heard about the Belleek marks and its fine pottery and want to know more about the place it is produced. Here is some info. Belleek is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Northern Ireland producing fine china of exquisite quality and beauty renowned the world over. Situated in Belleek in County Fermanagh and very close to the border with the Republic of Ireland it is certainly worth a visit, especially if you have refined tastes and are an admirer of creativity and beauty. Without doubt Belleek marks a place of excellence and refinement.
The Belleek Pottery was established in 1858 by John Caldwell Bloomfield, heir of the large Castlecaldwell estate. Mindful of the plight of the poor peasants who had suffered the ravages of the great famine a decade earlier he wanted to start a project that would provide employment for the local people. Bloomfield had an amateur interest in minerology and when he arranged for a survey of his estate he discovered that the land contained feldspar and other materials suitable for the production of fine china.
The company was established and grew to gain a reputation for quality craftsmanship under the inspiration of Bloofield himslef who prized quality. A tradition was established that any piece of pottery that had even the slightest flaw would be destroyed. The tradition persists to this day. The pottery is no longer made from local feldspar; the material is imported from Scandinavia. A number of pottery creations have won awards in international exhibitions. Owners of Belleek Marks include several prominent politicians among them presidents of the United States, and world famous artists.
Belleek has had seven marks from inception until today. The first featured a wolfhound with the body facing left but the head tilted to look right. To its right was a round tower, thought to represent the round tower on Devenish Island, and next to the tower was an Irish harp. This mark was used from 1863-90.
The second mark had the same features as the first but a banner was added beneath it with the words Co Fermanagh Ireland in capital letters. The second mark was used from 1890-1926. The third mark had the features of the second but with an addition. Beneath the banner was added a circle with the words Deanta in Eirinn (made in Ireland) in capital letters, and the registered trademark 0857 beneath the circle. This mark was in use during 1926-46. All three first marks were in black colour.
The fourth mark was identical to the third but in green instead of black. It was in use 1946-55. In the firth mark the letter R was added in a circle to the right of the harp to indicate “registered trademark”. This mark was in use 1955-65. The sixth mark was identical to the fifth in all respects apart from the fact that the words Co Fermanagh were removed from the banner and the banner became smaller. This mark was in use 1965-81. Marks four to six were all green. The seventh mark is identical to the sixth but the colour changed from green to gold.
With this useful information you can now claim expertise to determine the dates of modern and antique Belleek.
In the Visitor Centre you can watch a video and gain insights into the amount of work and level of skill required to produce Belleek Pottery. You can also spend some time looking at some of the creations on display. If you are looking for some fine china for your home you might want to consider Belleek vases or Belleek lamps. If you are looking for smaller gifts to take home Belleek will offer you plenty of options. If you can afford it you may even opt for some antique Belleek. With its fine shop Belleek Pottery is sure to have something for your taste. The prices match the quality of the products.
Belleek Pottery, Belleek, County Fermanagh, BT93 3FY
Tel. +44 28 6865 9300
If you want to shop Belleek click here for the official website.
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