Ceramic festival heading for Rufford Abbey

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Nottinghamshire County Council will host the 20th annual festival in the stunning historical surrounds of Rufford Abbey Country Park next weekend.

Have you always wanted to have a go on a potter’s wheel? A highlight of this year’s Earth and Fire will be Thomas Benirschke holding court with his fabulous four-handed Potter’s wheel.

Whatever your ability, you can have a go and help create some fabulous pots.

People can also meet and talk to more than 100 potters at the event, buy everything from sculptures to egg cups and browse trade stands selling tools of the trade.

The festival has been a mainstay of the international crafts calendar since 1994 promoting the very best of studio ceramics. The annual invasion of market stalls to the ancient abbey ruins, at Rufford Abbey near Ollerton, is a must for all lovers of the handmade ceramics.

Visitors will also be about to check out the skills of the artists in the free demonstration displays and marvel at the ‘Potters Games’ – that match artists against each other in humorous games of skill in a competitive atmosphere. For the first time this year they will line up as teams as the competition grows.

Bollywood Bunting will decorate the craft centre and stalls which celebrate work done by the community. As part of a learning project at Rufford and the county’s libraries, Nottinghamshire families have contributed to this visual feast, linking to the Indian inspired work of Garry and Pollie Uttley in the Gallery.

International exhibitors from Spain, Portugal, Germany, Holland and France will join home grown talent from the UK including potters Robin Welch, Mike Dodd, Lisa , David and Margaret Frith, Nigel Lambert and Ian Gregory.

There are also campus stands of University Graduates, the up and coming potters of the future, along with Adopt a Potter who support the next generation beyond education. The tombola will return, where you might win a pot by one of the top makers! And the whole event adorns the lawns of the country park with the stunning Abbey ruins providing a splendid backdrop.

The event will be held from Friday 20th June until Sunday 22nd June and will be open from 10am until 5pm daily.

Entry is free but the car park is £5.