School art project celebrated

Two local school children are celebrating after being recognised for their artwork at one of Worcester’s most well-known museums. Their creations, together with those of their classmates, are on display at the Museum of Royal Worcester and the adjacent Royal Porcelain Works from today, Thursday 23 January until Sunday 2 February 2020.

Students from a Worcester school celebrated at the Musuem of Royal Worcester

Flynn Howlett and Hanna Bogusz, Year 5 children at Our Lady Queen of Peace Primary School in Worcester, have been crowned the winners of their class art project judged by the Museum of Royal Worcester. Kayla Bradley and Monty Barr were highly commended in the judging.

The museum is next to the historic Royal Worcester factory site in Severn Street, also home to the Royal Porcelain Works complex.

The art project was the brainchild of Year 5 class teacher, Stella Astill, who decided that the class should create Worcester scenes in the style of painter L.S. Lowry, famous for capturing industrial cityscapes, to link to its ‘Battles and Beyond’ class theme.

Rather than producing a ‘normal’ painting, the children were encouraged to create a commemorative plate design that represented Worcester’s main industries including Lea and Perrins sauce, shoemaking, and porcelain.

The Museum of Royal Worcester agreed to ‘judge’ the class’s creations and to recreate the winners’ designs on actual ceramic plates courtesy of ex-Royal Worcester artist Tony Young. The children will have these plates to keep.

“I was very proud of all the children’s plates; they worked so hard on them and really cared about how well their finished item turned out.  As their teacher, I found the whole experience so worthwhile for the children and the development of their art skills. Having the involvement of the Museum gave them purpose and focused them on creating the best piece of art which they possibly could.  We would like to say a big thankyou to both the Museum and Tony who were so helpful and accommodating throughout the whole project.”

Stella Astill, Year 5 class teacher at Our Lady Queen of Peace Primary School

Sophie Heath, Director at the Museum of Royal Worcester, said: “We are delighted to have played a part in supporting this fabulous school initiative. We were impressed with the concept of bringing together Worcester’s industrial history and tradition of commemorative plate design at Royal Worcester; as an organisation, we are committed to engaging the next generation with Worcester’s proud porcelain and creative heritage and were therefore keen to encourage and support the school’s project. As part of celebrating and welcoming the children we are proud to be featuring a display of all the class’s work in our 20th Century gallery during February 2020”

Sara Matthews, General Manager at Royal Porcelain Works said: “Along with the museum, we also wanted to recognise and invite all the children involved in such a wonderful project to our historic site.  We have been very impressed with the quality, inspiration and endeavour in the children’s work and are delighted to feature a selection of their artwork in our foyer display cases.”

For further information please contact the Royal Porcelain Works on 01905 677399 or email

Offices available for creative businesses

Incredible Office Let opportunity within Royal Porcelain Works, above Goodroots and next to the Museum of Royal Worcester.

Would your business suit being in the heart of THE cultural centre of the city?

  • Set in the heart of a stunning regenerated area of the former Royal Porcelain Works factory site
  • Combination of open plan offices with a meeting room and board room
  • Parking: unique given the property’s central location
  • Recently refurbished to an extremely high specification
  • 2040 sq ft (189.5 sq m) NIA

High Quality First Floor Office Accommodation available at Royal Porcelain Works

This first floor suite lies within the Royal Porcelain Works; a vibrant new cultural development in the heart of the city. The former Royal Porcelain Works factory site has been gentrified to provide luxury residential and office accommodation, you are surrounded by history and lots of character. The office is located within walking distance to the City Centre and junction 7 of the M5 being only just over 2 miles away.

Worcester is a great location which is situated just over 30 miles of south Birmingham, 27 miles from Gloucester and 23 miles from Hereford. Whilst offering ideal transport links, this allows the city to be a perfect base for businesses in the Midlands. Worcester has three mainline railway stations including a direct service to London Paddington.

This stunning first floor office accommodation is accessed via a private entrance which fronts onto Severn Street.

Main office features include:
• Modern and spacious feel
• Private office/meeting room
• Allocated parking for two spaces
• Stair & lift access to the first floor
• Flexible working environment

The suite offers a very flexible working environment having an open plan office offering a modern feel whilst holding the character and history that surrounds it. The building is adjacent to the Henry Sandon Hall.

Studio / Office 887 sq ft 82.4 sq m
Meeting Room 332 sq ft 30.8 sq m
Private Office 237 sq ft 22.0 sq m
Ancillary Accommodation 584 sq ft 54.3 sq m
Total 2,040 sq ft 189.52 sq m

For full details and to arrange a viewing, visit Right Move or contact GJS Dillon on 01905 676169 or email:
Henry Burliston Churan –
Andrew Lewis –

Meet the author at Book Club

A celebrated local author will make a guest appearance at a book club event later this year.

Andy Griffee, a former BBC journalist and media consultant who lives in the Teme Valley, will meet book club members at the Royal Porcelain Works on Monday 2 March to discuss his book, Canal Pushers.

Celebrated local author to make star appearance at Book Club event

Canal Pushers – which was published in May last year by Orphans Publishing – is Andy’s debut novel in which a serial killer stalks the canal towpaths of Worcester.

The crime thriller begins with a deliberate drowning at night on the towpath near the Commandery and ends with another attack on the Worcester and Birmingham canal at Oddingley.  The climax of the book takes place on the canal during a Worcester Warriors’ home game at Six Ways.

The idea for the book was inspired by newspaper reports of a possible serial killer at large in the Greater Manchester area where a number of unexplained drownings had taken place.

“As an author, feedback from readers is a vital part of the writing process. I’ve really loved reading the encouraging reviews of Canal Pushers but this will be a fabulous chance to be face to face with readers, hear what they think and discuss it. I’m very grateful to Royal Porcelain Works for the opportunity"

Andy Griffee, Author of Canal Pushers

Canal Pushers is the first in a series of crime novels which will move around the canals and waterways of the UK. Andy has already written a sequel – which will be called River Rats – and is set on the River Avon in Bath, which will be released on 2nd April this year.

Royal Porcelain Works launched its book club last summer; taking place once a month on a Monday between 7.40pm and 8.40pm, the club continues to go from strength to strength.

The free event takes place in The Foyer with books decided by attendees.  There is no need to book; places are open to everyone.

The club is hosted by Worcester resident Jan Venables who has been volunteering at a number of Worcester theatre and entertainment sites for the past 25 years, including the Henry Sandon Hall which is situated within the Royal Porcelain Works.

“Enjoying a good book is one of life’s pleasures especially doing so in such a beautiful setting. Our aim is to read one book a month and learn from each other’s interpretations and reflections when we meet. All that is needed is a love of books and the willingness to talk about them. Everybody is welcome!”

Jan Venables, Volunteer at Royal Porcelain Works

Sara Matthews, General Manager of the Royal Porcelain Works said: “We are absolutely delighted, and a little bit honoured, to welcome Andy to discuss his novel at our March book club. From humble beginnings the club has grown, offering the opportunity for members of the community to come together to read and discuss a variety of books.  Having a local author within our midst will add something extra special!”

Books can be borrowed from libraries, purchased or downloaded on your kindle.

For further information please contact the Royal Porcelain Works on 01905 677399 or email

Christmas at Royal Porcelain Works

Worcester’s leading centre for art and culture has published it’s programme of events and activities for the festive period.

The Royal Porcelain Works – which has been developed to showcase the county’s artistry and craftsmanship – is organising a number of festive events throughout December.

With a variety of Pottery Painting, Workshops, Craft Fairs and Exhibitions, plus much more available, there is something for everyone this festive season.

Etsy Made Local
Saturday 30 November – Sunday 1 December, 10.00am to 5.00pm

With more than 20 sellers attending across this two day free event, offering shoppers a wide range of unique and meaningful gifts, all part of the site’s aim to encourage people to both source and buy locally this Christmas;

Christmas Pottery Painting
Saturday 7, Saturday 14 and Saturday 21 December, 2.00pm to 5.00pm and Sunday 1 and Sunday 1 December, 10.00am to 4.00pm

These events offer a range of different Christmas ceramics to paint including a plate for Santa and a baby’s first Christmas bauble.  Booking is essential.

“We are delighted to announce our Christmas programme.  The spaces at Royal Porcelain Works offer themselves perfectly for such creative events as we are all about showcasing the county’s artistry and craftsmanship.  We look forward to welcoming you to join in our festive fun!”

Sara Matthews, General Manager of Royal Porcelain Works.

Book Club
Monday 2 December, 7.40pm to 8.40pm

This month’s book choice is the festive ‘Skipping Christmas’ by John Grisham.  Free to attend, no booking is necessary.

Christmas Wreath Workshop
Sunday 8 December, 9.30am to 11.30am, 12midday to 2.00pm and 2.30pm to 4.30pm

Delivered by Sweet Ginger Flowers, attendees will create a luxury festive door wreath, using traditional techniques and premium British foliage.  Booking is essential.

Christmas Arts
Sunday 8 December, 10.00am to 5.00pm

Participate in Art will host 17 artists and artisans offering unique oil and watercolour works, photography, pottery, glassware, jewellery, mixed media, soft furnishings and original pieces, prints and gift sets.  Free to attend, no booking is required.

Watermarks – An Exhibition of Watercolours
Saturday 14 – Friday 20 December, 11.00am to 4.00pm

This exhibition will host watercolours by local artist David Birtwistle, who, for nearly half a century, has been painting Worcester scenes and the local countryside.  It will also include recent examples from his travels in France, Italy, India and Ireland.  No booking is required at this free event.

Christmas Table Decoration Workshop
Sunday 22 December, 9.30am to 11.30am and 2.30pm to 4.30pm

Delivered by Sweet Ginger Flowers, attendees will create a Christmas table centerpiece, using a variety of flowers, premium plant material and seasonal foliage.  Booking is essential.

For further information please contact the Royal Porcelain Works on 01905 677399 or email

Plates reinstated on historical site

Worcester’s leading centre for art and culture has unveiled a series of hand painted ceramic plates.

The Royal Porcelain Works – which has been developed to showcase the county’s artistry and craftsmanship – has reinstated 30 plates in what used to be the Victorian showroom of Royal Worcester, the Henry Sandon Hall.

The original plates were also housed in the Henry Sandon Hall, which was built in 1851 to showcase the world famous porcelain.

The project – which took 3 months to complete – was undertaken by Royal Porcelain Works resident artist Tony Young; just like in the Victorian period, these hand painted plates – depicting local scenes and wildlife- will be on show for visitors to enjoy as well as serving as a lasting legacy to Tony, a local artist who has an established relationship with the site.

“In reinstating the plates, we are creating a new piece of history for the Henry Sandon Hall, whilst also recognising the incredible talent of Tony who has dedicated his career to the Works and is an integral part of the team here today.”

Sara Matthews, General Manager of Royal Porcelain Works.

Resident Artist at Royal Porcelain Works, Tony Young – who has been an artist all his working life – began his career at Royal Worcester in 1970, shortly after his fifteenth birthday. In 1971 he was named ‘Best Animal and Bird Artist’ by the renowned ceramics expert Henry Sandon.

His many special commissions have included painting the Queen’s corgis, as well as paintings for the Sultan of Oman. Tony has also built up a reputation for his repairs and restoration work which he also undertakes on site; these have included around 600 red poppies from the public art installation at the Tower of London which commemorated the outbreak of the First World War.

The original plates were housed in the Henry Sandon Hall which was built in 1851 to showcase the world famous porcelain. Displayed in wall mouldings, the designs were hand painted by the artists who worked there.

The Bransford Trust – which owns the site – is currently developing an area on site which formerly housed the Trade Showrooms; scheduled for completion early next year, the spaces will be available for artists to lease.

For further information please contact the Royal Porcelain Works on 01905 677399 or email

Curation of first 'Foyer Arts'

The Foyer of the Royal Porcelain Works is the ideal space for the display and presentation for sale of artworks. PIA have worked with the Royal Porcelain Works on many projects and the Foyer Arts Exhibition space is the latest venture in the support and promotion of the Arts and Culture in Worcester.

Open 9:30am to 4:30pm daily from 30th October 2019, in The Foyer at Royal Porcelain Works

The first Artist to be displayed in the new and vibrant space is Worcester based Stereo-graphic Projection and Nature Photographer – Anthony Pearson.

Anthony likes photographing trees, flowers, people, urban details and all the other stuff he sees around him.

"Sometimes I photograph pieces of paper. I also make stereographic projections. A stereographic projection is a sphere mapped onto a 2 dimensional surface. In other words, photograph everything around you, then flatten out the image."

Photographer Anthony Pearson, exhibiting work at Royal Porcelain Works throughout November.

Anthony reflects on some felicitous quotes; “Finding myself out of the gossip, I busied myself taking snapshots of everything in sight, enjoying my dislocation from events. Watching the miniaturized, reflected image swim prettily into focus in my viewfinder, I had the world exactly as I wanted it.” – Jonathan Raban, Arabia Through The Looking Glass.

“I have this funny thing which is that I’m never afraid when I’m looking in the ground glass.” – Diane Arbus.

“I photograph to find out what something will look like photographed.” – Garry Winogrand.

For more information on Anthony’s work, please visit

To purchase a piece of Anthony’s work on display at Royal Porcelain Works, contact: Chris on 07713 055999 or email

If you are an Artist and wish to know more about exhibiting your work as a part of Foyer Arts at Royal Porcelain Works, or want to find out how Participate in Art can help you, contact Participate in Art directly.

Friday Night LIVE with ESO

Kenneth Woods, conductor of the English Symphony Orchestra, trades baton for cello on the 22nd of November when he teams up with the ESO’s popular Leader, violinist Zoë Beyers and actor Ben Humphrey for an evening of musical storytelling as part of the Royal Porcelain Works’ Friday Night Live series in The Hall. The new concert series has quickly established itself as one of Worcester’s most popular cultural offerings, with short, informal and entertaining concerts punctuated by a generous interval for socialising.

The idea for the programme grew out of Woods’ experience playing in the string trio Ensemble Epomeo, which used to perform regular children’s concerts under the brand of Auricolae – Music and Storytelling Troupe. “We would go on tour as Epomeo and visit schools as Auricolae, but as the years went on, we developed a body of storytelling works that were more and more sophisticated. Eventually, we started programming the storytelling pieces on our Epomeo concerts alongside Beethoven and Mozart, and the reaction of our ‘grown up’ audiences was amazing. Once we saw how rich a vein this was, we started looking beyond children’s stories and began commissioning narrated works for all audiences. It’s been one of the most popular things I’ve been involved in, and I’m so excited to bring some of these favourite pieces to our Friday Night Live audience.”

Taking up the primary role of storyteller for the evening is Ben Humphrey, the Artistic Director of Worcester Rep, whose production of The Tempest in Huntingdon Hall wowed Worcester audiences in September. Humphrey has a long association with the ESO, having hosted and narrated works like Stravinsky’s Soldier’s Tale, Walton’s Façade and a number of popular family concerts.

“A concert like this is both a gift and a challenge for an actor because it allows requires me to find so many voices and accents, and to portray so many different characters. I only ask that Ken and any other Americans in the audience are tolerant of my attempts at a Brooklyn accent.”

Ben Humphrey, the Artistic Director of Worcester Rep

Humphrey’s newly-cultivated Brooklyn brogue is required for two Klezmer-tinged works by David Yang. Lubin, from Chelm is a hilarious re-telling of the tradition English folk tale Lazy Jack, in which a low-achieving young man is driven into the workplace by his mother’s relentless nagging with tragicomic effect. The concert concludes The Matzoh Ball Man in which the animated dumpling, taking the role originally given to a gingerbread biscuit, leaves a trail of frustration and chaos across the Shtetl before meeting his end as an afternoon snack.

Also striking a decidedly humorous note is Andrew Waggoner’s take on The Emperor’s New Clothes, a tale more relevant than ever in today’s fraught political climate.

Turning away from folk and fairy tales, Gerald Levinson’s Fables are based on witty and enigmatic poems by the great American poet, Robert Lax. “I love Levinsons’ Fables,” says Woods. “They represent a true synthesis of really outstanding music and literature. They’re both funny and incredibly profound, full of mischief and deep wisdom, and musically sophisticated and mesmerising.”

The most dramatic work on the programme is also the one with the most ancient roots. Jay Reise’s The Warrior Violinist is based on one of the world’s oldest-surviving folk tales, one which can be traced back thousands of years to ancient Egypt. In Reise’s re-telling of the story, a poor young violinist falls in love with a beautiful princess. Convinced she could never love a penniless dreamer, he sets out to become a hero worthy of her affection, a journey which ends up being as unexpected as it is poignant.

Bringing the sounds of the violin-playing protagonist to life is Zoë Beyers, who says of the piece “Jay’s piece has an epic quality, and the music ranges from incredible tenderness to rather shocking violence. It really shows how much music and narrative can feed off each other to make something greater than the sum of its parts.”

To find out more and book your tickets, contact Royal Porcelain Works 01905 677399 or visit 

Kayaking in aid of local hospice

The team behind the growing success of Worcester’s leading new centre for arts and culture will be raising money for a special cause next month.

Rebecca Farrow, Jodie Godliman, Tania Jones and Sara Matthews who are based at Royal Porcelain Works – which has been developed to showcase the county’s artistry and craftsmanship – will compete in a series of team building exercises on Friday 11 October to raise money for St Richard’s Hospice.

Team building activity day in aid of St Richard's Hospice

Ria Simons, Fundraiser at St Richard’s Hospice, said: “We are delighted that the team at Royal Porcelain Works is taking part in our activity day!

“We hope the event will bring the team together for an enjoyable, constructive day – while raising essential funds for St Richard’s Hospice.

“From all of us here, we’d like to say a big ‘thank you’ to the Royal Porcelain Works team for supporting our care!”

“As a new team, we've decided to take part in a team building exercise and raise funds at the same time for our local hospice, who do such incredible work in our community".

Sara Matthews, General Manager for the Bransford Trust and Royal Porcelain Works.

The team will be taking part in climbing, track racing, archery, paddle boarding, kayaking and raft races against other teams.

To make a donation please visit

For further information please contact the Royal Porcelain Works on 01905 677399 or email

Review of The Beethoven Experience

“Last Friday evening, 6 September, could prove to be a seminal moment in the journey of the Royal Porcelain Works towards becoming established as a new and vibrant cultural and performing arts centre for Worcester. A memorable performance of Beethoven’s iconic Fifth Symphony, conducted by the hugely talented Keith Slade, provided the material for the inaugural Friday Night Live concert in the Royal Porcelain Works beautifully restored and refurbished Henry Sandon Hall. However, this was a concert like no other”.

The Friday Night LIVE season opened with 'The Beethoven Experience', the first ever 'Immersive Orchestral Experience' delivered by Royal Porcelain Works' Musical Director, Keith Slade.

“Slade, a professional clarinetist who recently moved to Worcester to establish the city as his base, currently divides his working week between orchestral conducting and teaching woodwind in one of the top independent schools in the Midlands.  As musical director of the Worcestershire Symphony Orchestra, he is becoming increasingly well known for pushing the boundaries of tradition in order to provide unique up close and personal experiences for his audiences.  For Slade, listening to live classical music performances is only part of the story – to really experience the full power of music he believes that his audiences also have to feel it.  And, as the recently installed Musical Director at the Royal Porcelain Works, that is the guiding principle behind his Friday Night Live series of concerts.

“Over the next few months, the Hall at Royal Porcelain Works will welcome a succession of nationally and internationally renowned musicians as guest performers in the series, all of whom have a gift for connecting with their audiences in new and exciting ways.  And this was most certainly the case last Friday for The Beethoven Experience, the first ever ‘Immersive Orchestral Experiences’ to be seen – or heard.

“The evening started with an instantly engaging 15 minute masterclass from Slade, in which he described the feelings that Beethoven was seeking to evoke in his Fifth Symphony, illustrated by short excerpts of themes from each of the movements played by various sections of the orchestra.  The Royal Porcelain Sinfonia then went on to thrill the sell-out audience to a truly unique and intimate performance, in which the ticket holders were all seated within the orchestra, rather than in a conventional theatre-style layout.

“This revolutionary approach took the concept of theatre in the round to the ultimate level, completely eliminating any separation between performers and audience and enabling everyone present to experience how it sounds – and, more importantly, how it feels – to be part of an orchestra during a live concert performance.  And for Slade, it required a completely novel methodology in which he was positioned centrally within a combined ellipse of musicians and audience, requiring him to conduct without a score whilst employing a 360 degrees rotational style that was equally as captivating as it was impressive.

“As soon as the strings announced the famous four note ‘fate’ motif – which Slade described as arguably the most instantly recognisable start to a piece of music in the entire classical repertoire – the anticipation and excitement in the room was tangible.  The delightfully expressive second movement, performed with great sensitivity by the orchestra, provided a welcome break from the tenseness of Beethoven’s raw emotions caused by his increasing deafness. And finally, the build up to the transition from the third movement’s mysterious Scherzo to the brilliant brassy fanfare that marks the start of the fourth movement was nothing short of exhilarating.  At this point it also felt as if the members of the orchestra, who had played beautifully throughout, yet perhaps slightly tentatively and within themselves at times, were liberated by the sound of the triumphant and much-heralded entrance of the trombones and instantly raised their energy levels to new heights.

“In many ways, the spontaneous standing ovation at the end of the performance was the most surreal part of the evening.  By tradition, at the end of an orchestral concert, performers will stand to recognise the audience’s applause under the guidance of their conductor; on this occasion the audience rose to their feet in unison to applaud and cheer and the performers, remaining seated amongst them, looked elated – yet slightly bewildered – by what they had just achieved.

“As we filed out of the Hall, only one question could repeatedly be heard over the excited buzz of conversation: “Does anyone know when Keith’s next ‘Immersive Orchestral Experience’ concert is happening?”” Paul West – Attendee

“Welcome to the very first season of Friday Night Live at Royal Porcelain Works. We will introduce soloists and groups of local, national and international repute, with concerts available for all musical tastes. We welcome all ages to our concerts, particularly young people and those who haven’t come along to concerts before. We hope you will be rewarded by a musical experience that will stay with you forever.”

Keith Slade, Music Director for Royal Porcelain Works

The next installment in the Friday Night LIVE will feature international pianist Viv McLean at Royal Porcelain Works on Friday 4th October. For further details please visit

Sara Matthews, General Manager of the Royal Porcelain Works said: “What an incredible start to our live music season. The Beethoven Experience was the first of it’s kind, showcasing a brand new concept never before seen in a concert environment. ‘Immersive Orchestral Experiences’ are something completely unique that we hope to bring more of to Royal Porcelain Works”.

“Throughout the Friday Night LIVE season we have a host of extremely talented and renowned musicians and we look forward to bringing something new and exciting to the city of Worcester”.

For further information please contact the Royal Porcelain Works on 01905 677399 or email

Friday Night LIVE Music Events

Worcester’s leading new centre for art and culture has announced it will be launching a series of Friday night live music concerts.

The Royal Porcelain Works – which has been developed to showcase the county’s artistry and craftsmanship – will host the events on the first Friday of every month beginning on Friday 6 September.

As part of this latest initiative, Royal Porcelain Works has appointed its own Director of Music, Keith Slade, to oversee the events.

Keith – who was born in the West Midlands – began his musical journey learning the clarinet from the age of ten.  After reaching the final of the BBC Young Musician of the Year Woodwind Category, Keith graduated from the Royal Northern College of Music where he was awarded the Hilda Collens’ Prize.

He furthered his studies under the guidance of Angela Malsbury and Nicholas Rodwell studying for a post graduate degree at the Royal College of Music supported by the Countess of Munster Trust.

At the Royal Academy of Music, Keith was awarded the Dorothy Grindstead Memorial Prize for the most outstanding postgraduate, the John Solomon Woodwind and Brass Prize and the Morgensterns’ Award.

“Welcome to the very first season of Friday Night Live at Royal Porcelain Works. We will introduce soloists and groups of local, national and international repute, with concerts available for all musical tastes. We welcome all ages to our concerts, particularly young people and those who haven’t come along to concerts before. We hope you will be rewarded by a musical experience that will stay with you forever.”

Keith Slade, Music Director for Royal Porcelain Works

The first event will welcome The Beethoven Experience; for further events please visit

Sara Matthews, General Manager of the Royal Porcelain Works said: “We kick off the season of Friday Night Live with a concert with a difference. We will invite you, the audience, to be part of the performance. Come and be immersed within the Royal Porcelain Sinfonia to experience the power of Beethoven’s 5th Symphony, as you are seated amongst the playing orchestra in this never-been-seen-before set-up. This is such a seminal work in the Classical repertoire, and promises to be a concert that the orchestra and audience will never forget.”

For further information please contact the Royal Porcelain Works on 01905 677399 or email

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