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pile of rejected pots at the end of a potter's wheel workshop at eastnor pottery

pile of rejected pots at the end of a potter's wheel workshop at eastnor pottery

Did you know that clay is infinitely recyclable? It’s been on the earth some 66 million years drying out and re-hydrating unchanged in nature. It’s only when it’s fired in the kiln it makes an irreversible change. Pottery or ceramic is probably one of the most permanent and durable materials known to man. Once they are out the kiln, they are out there forever!

It’s one of the reasons we ask our one day and weekend potter’s wheel course participants to be selective of their freshly made booty. At the end of the workshop, participants get to choose up to three creations to be fired and glazed. Surplus pots are ceremonially plucked from their resting places for recycling.

Must say it’s not very often we get such a neat pile of rejected pots! #neatlyfolded

clay castle made from individual bricks made at the cheltenham science festival by lots of families and school children

families making clay bricks in the makershack at cheltenham science festival 2019

It was fab to be back at the Cheltenham Science Festival last month.

We’ve been involved in the Makershack since its inauguration in 2017. This year we encouraged visitors to make a press molded brick, using real brick clay from Coleford Brick and Tile Company based in the Forest of Dean.

The bricks were assembled into a giant castle and we worked with nearly 10,000 people over the x6 days of the festival! – that’s a shed load of bricks! The sheer volume of visitors meant we had to build a fresh structure each day, deconstructing the building at the close and re-claiming the material for the next morning.

Athough the Makershack was primarily aimed at Primary school aged students – (and man, there must have been very few Gloucestershire schools who didn’t visit the show), on Friday night grown-ups got to play with the technology in a special after-hours session between 8pm and 10pm.

Although it’s full-on, we love the #makershack and look forward to sharing the scientific benefits of engaging with clay, with festival visitors in 2020.clay castle made from individual bricks made at the cheltenham science festival by lots of families and school children

school children enjoying hands on making clay bricks at cheltenham science festival 2019

pottery funwith the flying potter at Childwickbury arts festival

Looks like the Flying Potter has a busy few months ahead! Just look at all the lovely events and festivals the mobile division of Eastnor Pottery will be hosting clay workshops over the Summer. Hope to see you at one of them! :)

4-9 June Makershack, Cheltenham Science Festival. Come and make a clay brick using traditional clay brick making techniques for our collaborative sculpture. FREE event 10am – 5pm daily. Late opening on Friday 8pm-10pm

participants display their clay tiles at science festival 2018

14 June Royal Three Counties Show  Three Counties Showground Malvern. Jon will be there with his potter’s wheel entertaining school groups on the Eat Sleep Live Herefordshire stand.

 

The flying potter at the royal agricultural show malvern 2019

5-7 July Childwickbury Arts Fair, Hertfordshire. Take a spin on the potter’s wheel the take your clay pot away on the day to paint at home. 10am – 5pm

pottery funwith the flying potter at Childwickbury arts festival

13 July Brockhampton – come and play with clay in the orchards making insect homes and pots on the kick wheel. 10.30am – 3.30pm

child showing his clay fish made at hellens garden festival 2018

20 July Berrington Hall More brick making! Contribute to a collaborative interactive installation. Make and decorate one for the art work and one to take home as a keep sake.

girl making a clay brick at berrington hall with the flying potter

21-25 July Eastnor Castle. It’s the annual Flying Potter residency! You’ll get the chance to make a dragon head or dino scull to take away and paint at home.

Terracotta Trex made by families at Eastnor Castle with help from Eastnor Pottery

26-27 July Black Country Museum. Adult and family workshop sessions exploring various pottery making techniques and themed on the colourful ceramic world of the art potter Ruskin.

pottery workshop participant making a pot on the potter's wheel at the black country museum west midlands

8-11 Aug LAKEFEST! Right here right now, (well in a couple of months anyway!) Once again we’re venturing across the A438 into the deerpark to offer punters the chance to throw a pot on the potter’s wheel at this relaxed and family friendly music festival.

pottery wheel fun at lakefest music festival with eastnor pottery and the flying potter 2019

Creative activity for birthday celebration

Sarah and her family celebrated her birthday in potter’s wheel style!

The group took advantage of our fabulous 1.5hr shared potter’s wheel experience and made some super pots and shapes. We’ll fire and glaze their pottery creations, ready for collection from the studio in a few weeks time. The pots will serve as a permanent and unique reminder of her special day.

Happy Birthday Sarah!

 

MakerShack frontage at Cheltfest

Nearly 10,000 people enjoyed tinkering with materials in The Maker Shack at the Cheltenham Science Festival 2018 – and nearly all of them designed and made a clay tile at the Eastnor Pottery station!

It was the second year running Olivia Clements requested the services of the Flying Potter so we knew what to expect in terms of sheer volume of participation….and we weren’t disappointed!

The event was exhausting and needed team Eastnor Pottery & The Flying Potter to work shifts. Sarah, Millie and Jon all did a couple of days but all agreed it would have been really, really hard work if it hadn’t been for the brilliant army of volunteer helpers.

Each station was designated a couple of extra hands who once had been briefed on the activity, set about their tasks with enthusiasm, initiative and understanding. They were brilliant!

 

participants display their clay tiles at science festival 2018

mark making in clay at science festivalpublic making clay tiles at cheltenham science festivalclay tiles at cheltenham science festival makershack waiting to be collected