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Courses & Workshops at Potclays

Potclays has hosted a comprehensive programme of courses & workshops for over 35 years, attracting a wide audience ranging from the complete beginner to professional practitioner. Our courses are especially useful to teachers, tutors and technicians working in all areas of education. We carefully select the most respected, knowledgeable and qualified hosts to present our courses & workshops. We are proud to hold the Craftcourses.com Platinum Award for achieving over 50 5* reviews for our courses & workshops. 

  • Please ensure you read all information on this page fully before making a booking.
  • By proceeding to book a place for any of our courses & workshops via our Eventbrite pages, you agree to our booking terms & conditions.
  • To help you decide if a course is right for you, we have given each of our courses an ability rating: 1: Basic, 2: Intermediate and 3: Advanced. If you are unsure whether a certain course is suitable for you, please don’t hesitate to ask us for our advice and we will try to guide you.
  • All of our courses and workshops are held at our premises in Stoke-on-Trent. Unless otherwise stated, courses start at 9.30am and finish at around 4.30pm.
  • We keep group sizes as small as possible to ensure plenty of one-to-one and enable you to get the most from your day.
  • Lunch and all-day refreshments are provided unless otherwise stated and we can accommodate any special dietary requirements if we are notified at least 14 days before the course date.
  • Details of local accommodation can be found at www.visitstoke.co.uk or alternatively please CLICK HERE for recommendations.
  • Stoke-on-Trent train station is only a 5-10 minute taxi ride in good traffic.
  • You are welcome to pre-order materials, tools and equipment at special course discounts. We can hold your order open for additions on the day if you like.
  • For all hands-on workshops you will need to bring an apron, towel and some means of getting your creations home (cardboard fruit/veg crates are ideal). Please refer to the course listing for full detail. 

Our Mission - #educlaytion

We’re passionate about keeping the craft of ceramics alive. Studio ceramics is facing increasing threat with its neglect in the education syllabus at primary and secondary levels, whilst further and higher education courses are quietly dropped or subsumed into other disciplines. Our involvement in the promotion of ceramics within education has grown as the need to protect and nurture the subject has intensified. We have an unspoken but deep understanding that we should do everything in our power to promote the role of ceramics in our schools, colleges and universities as well as in the wider community. We hope that our efforts to provide a comprehensive programme of courses and workshops each year will go some way to ensuring the survival of this discipline in the years to come. You can keep up to speed with our efforts by searching the hashtag #educlaytion on social media. 

What others have said 

Charles Brown, Advanced Throwing 2017 Extremely well run and thought out course. David Frith is an inspiring presence . I have been throwing off and on for thirty years and was still able to learn new techniques and improve my throwing. A generous mountain of clay to get through and good arrangements for completed work. Fascinating tour of the site; Potclays staff extremely helpful at all times. A great course. 

Elizabeth Wills, Animal Sculpture 2018 Just finished this Course today and wow, it was wonderful. I have no artistic ability at all - just an uneducated enthusiasm - and despite this, Jeremy was able to guide me to making a passable hare. It’s an addictive pastime and I’m already planning more work now I have some basic techniques. Jeremy is a great teacher and was able to - with enviable ease - demonstrate, assist and guide on the entire process of making and modelling a hare sculpture. I would highly recommend this course, great value for money and as ever, the Potclays folk are wonderful - very welcoming and friendly. I really, really enjoyed this course!

Peter Styles, Basic Throwing 2018 I have to say that Jon French was incredibly supportive despite me being very much the novice amongst a class who with a few exceptions were all reasonably experienced potters. It was great fun, the staff at Potclays were very pleasant and helpful and all in all a very worthwhile two days. A nice lunch was provided and as much tea and coffee as you wished and as much clay as you could get round to using although some efforts went straight to recycling. Jon is an awesome thrower which rather left me feeling very incompetent but he encouraged and helped directly when necessary. A very nice course. 

Andri White, Intermediate Throwing 2018 Much thought from Potclays goes into the care of each member of the class and all the staff there are genuinely kind. The equipment is of a high standard and the room is bright, clean and friendly. Richard is a delightful, knowledgeable and talented tutor with a vast number of tips that make all the difference to making. He showed an ability to intuit exactly what each student needed to know even though we were all at different stages of ability. His enthusiasm inspired risk taking and his calming ‘Zen’ approach inspired confidence. I would happily do the intermediate course with Richard again knowing I would learn more each time. 

David, Mouldmaking & Slipcasting 2018 Good course. Puts you on the right path with plenty of demos, plenty of humour, lots of hands on experience. Very relaxed atmosphere allowing your confidence to grow. 

Catherine Ashton Copestake, Tilemaking with Richard Miller 2018 An excellent two day course at Potclays. Richard is a great tutor; fun, informative and encouraging. I wasn't sure what to expect so I just took some ideas along - I already have professional experience in ceramics, modelling and mouldmaking but wanted to learn more about press moulding and production techniques. You don't have to have any skill at all - just play and enjoy. Richard supplied all the ready-cut clay so it meant you could just dive in. I think it's imperative to learn from someone who is involved in the day-to-day production of ceramics combined with good business sense and Richard's thorough and common-sense approach was a delight. Potclays is a great place to stock up on supplies - the staff know their stuff and are very friendly and helpful. Lunch was lovely and there's free tea and coffee all day. I'd would recommend this course to anyone in love with tiles (or slab building, or similar) and I'll be back for more. 

BOOKING TERMS & CONDITIONS

  1. Booking Deadline: Eventbrite ticket sales generally end 3 days before the course date (although please check individual course listings). Many courses become fully booked well in advance of the course date so please book early to avoid disappointment.
  2. Payment Terms: Course fees are inclusive of VAT and booking fees, and are payable at the time of booking.
  3. Delegate Substitution: Substitute delegates may be nominated at any time. There is no charge for delegate substitution providing there is no change of course date.
  4. Course or Date Transfers: Transfers are subject to availability and must be completed at least 14 days prior to the course date. All transfers are subject to an admin fee of £25 inc VAT.
  5. Cancellations By You: Refunds must be requested through Eventbrite. See your booking email for details.
    • 30 days or more before the course date: Full refund
    • 29-14 days before the course date: Full refund less £25 inc VAT admin fee
    • Less than 14 days before the course date: No refunds (in this case we would suggest you seek delegate substitution)
  6. Cancellations By Us: It may be necessary due to reasons beyond our control for Potclays Ltd. to cancel a course in which case our liability is limited to a full refund of the course fee. See Point 9 regarding travel & accommodation bookings.
  7. Course Suitability: Ability ratings are intended as guidance, and whilst we are very happy to offer further advice if needed, it is ultimately the responsibility of the student to decide whether a course is suitable for them.
  8. Dietary Needs: These must be notified to us at the time of booking. Our caterers can accommodate dairy or gluten intolerances but cannot guarantee their foods are nut-free. Please check with us regarding any other needs.
  9. Photography Disclaimer: Please note that photography and/or filming may take place during our courses, workshops and other events and this material may be used publicly in our marketing and on social media.
  10. Travel & Accommodation Bookings: Please ensure any travel or accommodation bookings you make are refundable in case of course cancellation. We will not be liable for any costs relating to non-refundable bookings.