#2 Alex Allpress Pottery School in Newbridge on Wye
Sometimes (just sometimes) it rains in Wales. Thankfully however, as well as having the wonderful outdoors to explore, Mid Wales is a haven for creative and artistic endeavours.
And it isn’t just little wellies that like to get messy, little hands also like to explore and discover the world.
On the A470 between Builth Wells and Rhayader, Alex Allpress Pottery School is based in Newbridge on Wye and offers a great experience for all the family, and any age. This is a fantastic opportunity to make a mess and create something to take home, as well as memories. We went as a family, so the baby came too - but it would have been more helpful if he had slept! It is worth noting that this activity is brilliant for all ages and abilities, but not for babies.
Tucked away in the upstairs of an old barn, my family spent a fantastic afternoon making and creating with clay under the patient and helpful company of Alex himself.
The workshop itself is a great space; balancing practicality with a welcome atmosphere. On street parking is available very close by in the village and it is just a short walk from wherever you park to the workshop. Alex met us at the door and took us through the barn and upstairs to the studio.
After distributing some great lumps of clay Alex gave us a demonstration on how to form a simple bowl. It was then up to us to create our own bowls, which somehow didn’t look quite the same! Once we had made our bowls, Alex showed us various options on how to decorate them with other smaller pieces of clay. Alex was a great teacher with adults and children, and on hand the whole time to help and answer any questions.
Our children and I (possibly mainly me) loved this activity; it was interesting, educational and enjoyable. Working with clay and concentrating on the challenge of making something was also strangely therapeutic. It was difficult for the children to get bored as Alex had lots of creative ideas to keep us going. We also got a bit grubby, which is part of the fun – so I am glad we made sure we wore suitable clothing.
Sometimes a family just needs some time together, ‘doing’ something in a creative and cosy environment with someone there to help you create a family ‘masterpiece’. This experience would also make for a great activity if you home school.
As well as our fabulous very ‘homemade’ pieces, Alex makes beautiful stoneware individual pieces for the home and exhibition, which are on display and available to purchase (prices range between £10 - £200).
Pottery parties, workshops and courses are scheduled throughout the year. Also available are weekend pottery throwing courses, prices includes a homemade lunch and firings.
Contact details for Alex Allpress Pottery Studio are The Lion House, Newbridge-on-Wye, Powys LD1 6LN. They are very friendly so feel free to give them a call on 01597 860127 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.