15th March 2018
Learn Glassblowing at Dartington Crystal in North Devon
Originally founded in 1967 as a commercial enterprise, Dartington Crystal celebrated their 50th anniversary in 2017. Since they began the business has developed and grown to be the UK’s leading name in crystal and glass. Dartington Crystal is now the only remaining factory scale producer of handmade glass in the UK and Ireland.
Their products are sold all over the world including at Tiffany’s in the U.S and they are the home of Royal Brierley - the longest established name in English crystal.
Their factory showcases glass makers at work, and lucky for us they are found just 15 minutes from Bideford. It's therefore an ideal place to take the family for a trip out to learn the art of glassblowing and discover unique gifts.
Dartington Crystal Visitor Centre
It's here guests can shop, learn, dine, create unique gifts and discover history during a visit. It offers a wonderful opportunity to discover first-hand the art of cutting glass and creating fine English crystal - an experience for all the family to enjoy.
You can see and hear their fascinating history in the Audio Visual Theatre, follow the timeline exhibition, learn interesting facts and see products dating from their early years.
On display for all, the Master Engraver works his wonders, creating maser pieces for all to enjoy. Plus you can choose a Dartington piece and have it personally engraved for that extra special touch.
View the heart of the factory where you will see and experience the skill, quality and care that helps make Dartington special by watching the Master Craftsmen at work who can make up to a maximum of 1900 pieces per day. Their Factory Tour brings you into the hustle and bustle of their factory floor, where the handmade glassware are created on site. This is an opportunity to speak to the team and learn about how the glass items you may have at home came into existence.
Take part in the many Creative Activities – have your child’s hand cast forever in glass, the perfect gift or souvenir. You can also blow your own glass, or children and adults can join in the fun together by painting glass or making glass jewellery.
Go shopping and purchase everything glass and homeware related. They have a host of Dartington brands to choose from, at bargain prices. The Dartington Kitchen and Home store and Homewares section (which has lots to offer such as interiors, soft furnishings and gifts) is the perfect place to shop. It's all under one roof with many other brands such as Edinburgh Woollen Mill, Portmeirion, T & G Woodware, Heathcote & Ivory, Wrendale and Jellycats. There is even the all year round Christmas Shop.
Enjoy a cup of freshly ground Puro Fair Trade coffee and something tempting from a great selection of freshly prepared light lunches, fabulous cakes and snacks from locally sourced fresh producein the Pavillion Cafe.
Plus, sit back and relax in the Ginspiration Bar featuring a wide range of local gins and other drinks.
This is the perfect day out for all the family. A trip to Great Torrington and the rolling Devon countryside is a must, so make sure Dartington is on your 'to-do' list!