I am a clay tobacco pipe enthusiast, having researched, excavated, collected
and lectured on tobacco pipes for more than 20 years.
Broseley's clay tobacco heritage stretches back just over 400 years, a tobacco
pipemaker being recorded in the town in 1590.
The town achieved a reputation for quality pipes in the 17th Century which came
to be acknowledged worldwide. Pipemaking continued until 1957 when the last factory
in the town, the Southorns, finally closed. The Southorns' premises in King Street
is now a pipeworks museum, open from the end of May until mid September.
I recently acquired my own kiln and am now making clay pipes in the traditional
manner, each pipe being pressed using a reproduction cast iron mould, then hand
finished and finally fired.
The popular short Broseley cutty, available in many attractive patterns
including The Football, The Rustic, The Hand and Tankard, the Lacy Lady's
Leg and The Bulldog, retails at £5.00, and can be posted worldwide. The
more elegant 17-inch or 22-inch Churchwarden costs £25.00, but is
available only to special order and must be collected. Payment by Paypal or sterling cheque.
Orders to Rex M Key, Rotherhurst, Woodlands Road, Broseley, Shropshire, TF12 5PU, UK