Moorcroft Pottery – How it All Began – Part Two

William Moorcroft Design - FlamminianFrom 1904 onwards Moorcroft began to introduce a range of new designs that moved steadily further away from Florian.  The first of these was probably Flamminian Ware whose oriental simplicity was far removed from either William Morris or Art Nouveau.
 
The period 1905 to 1911 seems to have been a particularly creative one for Moorcroft with a number of new decorative patterns appearing.
 
With these patterns Moorcroft entered a new era.  His style of drawing became bolder, sweeping over the surface and thrown into relief by the increasing use of dark and mottled grounds.  Some retailers did not appreciate these changes.  However in general reactions were favourable.
 
By far the most important development of the 1900s was the close relationship between Moorcroft and Liberty’s and it is clear that Liberty’s was probably Moorcroft’s most important client during this period.  In particular they commissioned a range of commemorative wares.
 
However the relationship was more than just a commercial one.  A friendship developed between William and Alwyn Lasenby, Lasenby Liberty’s cousin and a partner in the company. 
 
It was also clear that Liberty’s relationship  was with Moorcroft himself and not Macintyre.  Initially Macintyre did not appear to mind this and the relationship between them seems to have been amicable at least until 1911.
 
It was in this year, however that a rift began to appear in a serious disagreement between Moorcroft and his Managing Director, Henry Watkin.  At the same time Macintyre’s were reconsidering  the whole future of their ornamental and tableware departments, with a view to concentrating on the production of electrical porcelain.
 
The final decision was not made until 1912 and Moorcroft seems to have been formally told of the decision in October 1912.
 
Moorcroft began immediately to plan a new factory where he could continue to produce the ware that he had made so characteristically his own.