Royal Doulton has been producing ceramic items for almost 200 years. As far back as 1815, the company founder, John Doulton, began producing practical and decorative stoneware from a small pottery in Lambeth, south London, in the United Kingdom.
His son, Henry, built the business, relocating it 60 years later to Stoke-on-Trent in Staffordshire, England, known around the world as “The Potteries.” By 1901, the quality of Doulton’s tableware had caught the eye of King Edward VII, who permitted the company to prefix its name with “Royal,” and the company was awarded the Royal Warrant.
The company expanded its production facilities and by the 1930s was involved in the manufacture of figurines and giftware.
Royal Doulton was awarded the Queen’s Award for Technical Achievement in 1966, for its contribution to china manufacture — the first china manufacturer to be honored with this award.
During the 1960s and 1970s, Royal Doulton discarded its drainpipe production interests and acquired Minton, which had begun china production in 1793, and crystal manufacturer Webb Corbett. In 1972, Royal Doulton was bought by conglomerate Pearson and merged with Allied English Potteries, adding a number of key brands, including Royal Albert.
In 1993, Royal Doulton was demerged from its parent and became a public company listed on the London Stock Exchange.