taken from the Royal Doulton website. The Royal Doulton story began in 1815 the same year as the battle of Waterloo. John Doulton was asked by Martha Jones to join her small pottery on the banks of the River Thames in London. Martha a widow needed a business partner to join herself and her foreman John Watts John Doulton already a talented potter was perfect for the job. He invested his life savings of 100 into the business and the Doulton & Watts pottery was born. The factory specialised in manufacturing salt-glaze and stoneware ceramics stone jars bottles and flasks. In 1835 Henry Doulton joined the firm and it flourished due to Henrys role in the sanitary revolution - pioneering the general use of stoneware drain pipes and water filters to improve living conditions. An innovator of his day Henry came up with several ingenious ways of engineering and manufacturing the pipes and other stoneware items that made Doulton & Watts world-class experts in the field. Their wares were exhibited at the Great Exhibition held in Londons Hyde Park in 1851. In 1854 John Watts retired from the business and it became known as Doulton & Company. In 1860 the business diversified further after Henry was persuaded to work with pupils from the neighbouring Lambeth School of Art by his friend John Sparkes a move that would form the company we know and love today. What followed was a long and fruitful relationship resulting in the employment of many of the schools art graduates including George Tinworth and Hannah Barlow. The pieces they created at Doulton & Company were the polar opposite of the industrial pieces the firm had previously been known for. They were delicately modelled brightly coloured exquisitely decorated and won hearts all over the globe. One notable fan was Queen Victoria who knighted Henry Doulton in 1887 for his services to ceramics and the advancement of ceramic art. In 1901 four years after Henrys death Edward VII granted Doulton to add the Royal to their name. Taken from the Royal Doulton website.