Traditionally bulls, crockery (especially in china shops) and the colour red don’t go down very well! Despite this a Herefordshire potter has become popular with locals and visitors to the Bull’s City for hand-thrown mugs, bowls, jugs and jars finished in a fiery red glaze.  Rachel Padley’s white earthenware clay pieces are in exhibition at The Craft Gallery first showcase at the Old Mayor’s Parlour until the end of January 2017.

Long before the Great British Pottery Showdown appeared, Rachel Padley, had started throwing pots. It was the chance to be at home with her young children whilst continuing to be creative that appealed. Rachel had trained as a stone-carver (at St. Paul’s Cathedral).  She developed those skills to obtain a degree in sculpture, before she went and worked as a conservator of ancient monuments.

Working with clay, enables Rachel to continue to sculpt ornamental objects for the garden as well as creating functional domestic ware.  Her work is influence by her continuing interest in old buildings, especially churches, natural forms and the surrounding countryside. Her pieces are thrown or slab-formed at her new studio which was set up in May this year. It includes her electric kiln essential for firing work.

Rachel Padley is a member of South Wales Potters and The Guild of Herefordshire Craftsmen. Her skilfully thrown pots are in high demand (hence the new studio space). By the nature of the firing the glazes show subtle graduations of colour from orange tinges, through bright post-box red, to deep maroon red.

Artist’s don’t like to stand still and Rachel has been experimenting with new colours and effects on her mugs and thrown-pots. One collector has responded to this change as follows: – “Love the shape and the dribbly bits, but you know that basically I am a redaholic!!!” I

The Craft Gallery’s first showcase, until 31 January 2017, will have the latest work of eight artists. Pieces on show include blown glass, hand-made furnishings, ceramics, illustration, abstract paintings, and textiles. Gallery opening times are Tuesday to Saturday 09:30 – 17:00. 

The gallery is located on the first floor. The age of the building prevents the owners from creating a lift or other form of assisted access. Hugh and his team will be happy to assist in bringing down items to those who are unable to go up the stairs.