For nearly 200 years Maling was amongst the most important potteries of the North East. Founded on Wearside in 1767, the firm moved to the Ouseburn area of Newcastle by 1817, continuing until closure in 1963. It was at one time the largest pottery in the world, employing many local people. The Maling factories contained up-to-the-minute machinery for the mass-production of a wide variety of good quality pottery items, from decorative bowls and vases to utilitarian jam jars and water filters. Maling employed leading designers to ensure that their decorative pottery was at the height of fashion.

North East Coast Exhibition commemorative plate, 1929. C.T. Maling & Sons (1762-1963)
Glazed earthenware with transfer-printed decoration
Given by Mrs S. Hayes, 1986.

This commemorative plate for the North East Coast Exhibition of 1929 is decorated with a blue and white transfer-printed design. The centre depicts the River Tyne and bridges with a view of the Maling Factory in the foreground. Around the rim are four scenes from North East industry. The west of Newcastle upon Tyne is at the top of the plate and there is a portrait of Arthur W. Lambert, Councillor, Lord Mayor and Chairman of the exhibition at the base of the design.

Ringtons ‘Pansy’ flower pot and cover, about 1935, C.T. Maling & Sons (1762-1963)
Glazed earthenware with moulded and hand-painted decoration
Purchased, 1975.

The Maling pottery is closely associated with another local firm, Ringtons tea merchants. Between 1928 and 1962 Maling supplied Rington’s with pottery which the firm would sell to its customers via their door to door delivery vans, particularly during the Christmas season. Maling produced a wide range of tea caddies, teapots, vases, jugs and souvenir wares in many different designs. This moulded ‘Pansy’ design was one of the best known and most popular made for Ringtons, and was produced throughout the 1930s.

James Keiller & Sons Dundee Marmalade pot, 1929. C.T. Maling & Sons (1762-1963)
Glazed stoneware with transfer-printed label
Given by Mr S. Cottle, 1982.

Although the Maling pottery is best known for its decorative wares, it was founded on the production of plain, commercial pottery such as jam jars and preserve pots. This type of work continued to provide a large part of the factory’s income throughout its life. Keiller’s of Dundee, makers of jams and marmalades, were one of the factory’s best customers from the mid-1800s to the 1930s. The jars Maling produced for them ranged from a massive 2-pound jar to a miniature version, one of which was used to furnish the kitchen in Queen Mary’s famous dolls’ house.