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Rumney Pottery

A Grade II Listed Building in Rumney, Cardiff

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Coordinates

Latitude: 51.5011 / 51°30'3"N

Longitude: -3.1388 / 3°8'19"W

OS Eastings: 321050

OS Northings: 178630

OS Grid: ST210786

Mapcode National: GBR KTC.4V

Mapcode Global: VH6F7.KJ0M

Entry Name: Rumney Pottery

Listing Date: 19 May 1975

Last Amended: 27 June 2000

Grade: II

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 13761

Building Class: Commercial

Location: Close to Rumney Bridge (over Rhymney River) and the East Moors Viaduct.

County: Cardiff

Town: Cardiff

Community: Rumney (Tredelerch)

Community: Rumney

Built-Up Area: Cardiff

Traditional County: Monmouthshire

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Rumney

History

The Pottery is in an important position close by the river, the traditional boundary between Glamorgan and Monmouthshire, with a quay marked on early maps indicating a trading site, which was also reputedly used for smuggling. The nearby bridge is a 1910 successor to earlier stone and probably wooden bridges - there has been a crossing at this point from medieval and possibly Roman times. Foundations of an early C19 tollhouse are in the garden. The bridge featured in the Chartist Riots when it was held by dragoons. Former castle nearby on the hillside was an important early Norman foundation, on a Roman site, by Robert Fitzhamon, Lord of Glamorgan, of 1093. The Pottery has been in the same family, the Giles, for some 3-400 years with detailed descent traced through 7 generations. Clay was formerly dug in the fields on the opposite side of the river. C19 censuses show a substantial number of people employed as potters and C19 trade directories list a number of potteries. In C18 and early C19 the works made domestic items such as water pitchers and bread crocks, later producing more decorative pieces for the Victorian home such as wash sets, as well as the utilitarian washing pans widely used in the mining communities; in later C20 the pottery has specialised in commemorative sgraffito. Formerly the premises incorporated a pug mill where clay was churned; this was originally driven by a horse attached to a shaft along a partly surviving circular wooden track in the brick floor, later by steam. House is probably C18 though substantially altered; original listing description refers to their having formerly been stairs flanking stone fireplaces. Appears on OS 1:2500 map as Rumneybridge Pottery.

Exterior

House and pottery building. House, 2 storeys, has roughcast rendered thick walls of stone rubble with machine tile roof and brick centre ridge and off-ridge stacks. 2 window range of wide C20 casement windows either side of round-arched doorway with recessed part-glazed door. Pottery workshop of rendered stone and brick adjoins to right (S) with 2 window range to first floor; ground floor has centre door and workshop window to left, smaller boarded door with small adjacent light and a projecting wing with catslide roof to right. Workshop range facing river and former quay has a small-pane window in gable end left with large painted 'Pottery' sign below, another window with cambered head half concealed by outshuts and a lower long cross range with similar half concealed window extending to right; lean-tos at front.

Interior

Interior of pottery is a complex of showroom, workshops and office rooms on two storeys and attic. Main ground floor room, the showroom, has thin ceiling joists. Upstairs the brick beehive kiln with metal bands of about 1850 is visible; it is rare in being incorporated into a workshop and formerly projected above the roof. Formerly an adjacent attic provided a drying-room for pots prior to firing. Kiln was fired with coal and finished with wood to melt the lead glaze. House has central hall and rooms either side; to left a beam is papered over, to right beams are lightly chamfered and stopped.

Reasons for Listing

Included notwithstanding alterations as an important regional pottery especially for its strong historic interest and that of its site.

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