Collection and Exhibitions

Sharpe's Pottery Museum | Collection and Exhibitions

Object of the Month


 T.G. Green - Espresso Cup & Saucer Set

Spring is in the air and the abundance of colour and verdure that has begun to bloom all around us is reflected in our latest display. The delicate leaves, flowers and blossoms which adorn the cups and saucers in this miniature espresso set, were all hand-painted and contrast beautifully with the black background upon which they sit. Further embellishment in gold enamel around the rim of the cups and saucers, also enhances this distinction.

Whilst we are unsure of the range to which these pieces belong, the base of each cup has been marked with a pattern code - “493” on the right-hand side and “479” on the left-hand side. Likewise, the production date for this set can also be inferred from the backstamp on the base of each cup. The use of the “Early Church Backstamp” which was in circulation between the mid 1930’s and early 1960’s, thus puts the date of production within this time frame.

T.G. Green pottery came into existence in 1864 when Thomas Goodwin Green acquired an existing, large and well-equipped pottery works in Church Gresley; Derbyshire. Although he had no experience of the pottery industry when he bought the works, T.G. Green soon made a success of the business and in the early 1880's decided to expand by building a new works in the valley below the old works. In later years, the pottery changed hands several times and eventually closed in 2007. T.G. Green is probably best known for their blue and white Cornishware.


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If you're planning on visiting the museum whilst our latest object is out on display and you know anything else about this particular piece; or a similar object, we would love to hear from you.

Temporary Exhibitions

We have several exciting Temporary Exhibitions being hosted by Sharpe’s Pottery Museum this summer including:


Lower Gallery Exhibition - September 2018

"Swadlincote Townscape Celebrations" - Our annual "Townscape Celebratory Exhibition" will return to explore the latest aims and develpoments of the HLF  "Swadlincote Townscape Heritage Scheme". A variety of display pieces that were created during our HLF craft workshops will feature and include photographs taken from along the "Townscape Route", clay shop front plaques and chimney pots, as well as our glass art logo and some mosaic and painted tile creations. Eventually a printed "Swadlincote Street Scene" will hang along our kiln wall. If you fancy stopping by, then the museum and lower gallery are free to enter between 10am - 4:30pm; Monday to Saturday, with last admissions at 4pm.


Featured Artists in the Museum Cafe - September 2018

This month's art display has been installed by Janet and Julian Price. The exhibition features a variety of media forms which include acrylic paintings, photographs, line drawings and paper cuttings. Several items will also be available to buy. A number of the pieces on display are available to purchase so please enquire at the museum reception desk for further information. Cafe Espresso is open Monday - Saturday; 10am to 4pm, with last orders at 3:30pm.


Featured Artists in the Museum Gift Shop - Autumn 2018

We have a selection of temporary exhibitions currently on display within our gift shop, with all items available to purchase from the museum reception desk. The original works of artist Kay Smith can be seen in the "Calke Abbey Collection" that is on display alongside the printed works of Barry Phillips Smith, which depict local heritage features within the surrounding landscape; such as Moira Furnace, the Tramway Arch at Ticknall and of course Sharpe's Pottery Museum.

The "Ceramic Creations" of Jayne Proctor from "Sheepshead Pottery" are also being exhibited in our Gift Shop and are available to purchase from the reception desk. The main creations produced at the Sheepshead Pottery include quirky clay likenesses of a variety of animals, such as hares, field mice, owls and of course sheep. We are also currently exhibiting the works of Maria Picken, which include an array of ornamental dishes, plates and vases.

A small carpentry exhibition is on display in our gift shop, which has been set-up by local woodworker "Clem" and which includes various handcrafted items such as themed trinket boxes and tealight holders. Again all items on display are available to purchase from the museum reception desk.   

In addition to the colourful glass creations of Angela Ashton, we have recently added the works of Steve Allen "The Driftwood Artisan" to our display. Again all pieces are available to purchase from the museum reception desk.


A Toilet Story

The National Forest Gallery

The Museum joined forces with The National Forest, to create this interactive ‘hands on’ exhibition, telling the story of the local 'Swad' landscapes, damaged by the coal and clay industries and their more recent transformation into green open spaces, with increasing numbers of newly planted trees forming part of The National Forest.

South Derbyshire Potteries Gallery

The South Derbyshire Potteries Gallery includes a scale model of the Sharpe’s when it was a working pottery alongside many exhibits of domestic and decorative pieces produced by local potteries; these include Bretby Art Pottery, T.G. Green and  Moira Pottery.

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