Armitage Shanks – the iconic brand name that has become part of the British psyche. Established in 1817 by Thomas Bond the Armitage factory grew from a group of workers defying a strike in the Stoke potteries.
Early manufacture was in tableware but by the 1850s production turned to the casting of sanitaryware with the growing demand for domestic and commercial toilets that could be plumbed into the recently built sewage systems in major cities.
Over the decades Armitage Shanks has risen in notoriety by supplying the bathrooms for the Titanic, inspiring the term “the John” following the many thousands of toilets exported to America during the ownership of the company by the Reverend John and inventing the colour Avocado.
For Fountain17 Armitage Shanks has special resonance as it has frequently been appropriated for other purposes….in rock by Green Day, in folk by Chuck Brodsky, in film by Johnny English, on radio by Mornington Crescent and in countless other unrelated creations.
Today Armitage Shanks remains firmly at the top of ceramic manufacturing in the UK and is the only major sanitaryware manufacturer left in the UK. Based in the small industrial town of Armitage in Staffordshire the factory incorporates the latest robot technology and is one of the most sophisticated plants in Europe.
Today Armitage Shanks remains firmly at the top of ceramic manufacturing in the UK.