Each Year for the past Five Years
Marion has been running
"Play with Clay"
during the summer holidays,
a chance for children and parents to get their hands
on and explore the joys of clay.
She has just finished for this year.
It takes a lot of planning and preparation, not least as we are
a full production pottery that uses Red Earthenware clay, and we continue
with full production whilst Marion runs the sessions
in the school room attached to the main workshop & showroom.
This year we have used over half a tonne of grey air drying clay
in only a period of five weeks for 4 days per week.
We chose to use the grey for a number of reasons, first of all it is easier for the kids to paint
their creations once they have dried, secondly it washes of the cloths without staining.
Although it costs slightly more it does mean we are sure none gets mixed
in with our red clay used for the production of pots.
Marion provides a board to work on, rolling pins, shape cutters,
pencils, small pots of water, brushes and a plastic apron,
and if stuck for ideas a few printed sheets of ideas and creations of her own.
The children love it with many of them returning a number of times over the weeks.
This year the kids have been especially creative and the atmosphere in the room
has been great on a daily basis.
While all of this is going on
I'm still making pots in the main barn,
I love the sound of the hustle and bustle and watching the kids faces
as they proudly come to show me what they have made.
Marion say's that for her one of the nicest things is watching the adults and kids
interacting with each other, bouncing ideas of each other
and getting really creative is a joy to watch.
Pencil holders have proved to be a big hit this year.
along with Dinosaurs!
Allowing the kids to make what ever they want allows for their creative mind
to take flight, and that is what we like.
It's a nice way to introduce the kids to the craft world
as well has having a go themselves they can also see
a professional potter at work in his own environment.
They each get to take their creations home on the day
to finish off or paint at a later date.
This Year Marion had over 700 kids being creative
and that meant dealing with parents and grandparents.
That averaged out at 33 Children per day.
Marion does all of this on her own for the five weeks
I personally think that takes one very special person.
She deserves a medal or some kind of recognition from the Crafts Council
to put so much effort into making sure kids have a great time exploring
the joys of clay.