Stoke & Staffordshire

Prince Charles at Victorian Middleport Pottery site

Prince Charles in Stoke-on-Trent
Image caption The Prince of Wales appeared unhappy at his attempt at tissue transfer printing at the factory

The Prince of Wales has visited the last working Victorian pottery factory in Staffordshire, after it was secured for the future by his charity.

In June, The Prince's Regeneration Trust (PRT) announced it would invest £7.5m in Middleport Pottery, in Stoke-on-Trent.

Burleigh blue and white floral china has been made there since 1888.

Prince Charles launched the project as part of a two-day tour championing regeneration schemes.

Education centre

He met members of staff and was shown around the site as part of the visit, after the charity acquired the Grade II-listed pottery factory in June.

The prince also tried tissue transfer printing on a jug during the visit.

Image caption Prince Charles will go on a tour of the Middleport Pottery site

Forty five jobs have been saved and refurbishment and regeneration of the site is due to begin in autumn 2012.

The initiative will ensure the Burleigh china continues to be manufactured on-site, while the majority of the remaining buildings at Middleport will be modernised and let to businesses.

A visitor and education centre, including a factory shop and cafe, will also be built.

Ros Kerslake, chief executive of the PRT said: "Without [the prince's] belief and support for the project we wouldn't be here today embarking on a new and exciting future for Middleport, for The Potteries, and for Stoke."

The prince toured the Weavers' Triangle area of Burnley, Lancashire, before visiting the Middleport pottery.

On Monday he went to a steel plant, a retail unit and a young people's charity on Teesside.

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