Middleport Pottery steam engine

Steam engine fundraising drive smashes target

A campaign to revive Middleport Pottery's Victorian Steam Engine has smashed its fundraising target - more than two weeks ahead of schedule.

In July, The Prince’s Regeneration Trust (PRT) launched a 100-day crowdfunding campaign to raise the remaining £18,608 needed to restore the Pottery's William Boulton Steam Engine, a key feature of the original 1888 factory.

The engine was built specifically for the Pottery and is the last surviving example of its kind still within its original setting. It was used to provide the power for most of the machinery throughout the factory, driving the production of Burleigh pottery from clay to cup.

Yesterday, we received our final donation of £5,130 from Hilco Capital, the company that owns Burleigh, with almost 20 days left of the campaign. This pushed us over our £167,000 target and was our 101st pledge since the campaign began.

Thanks to the support of several generous funders, £149,000 had already been gathered for the restoration by July, leaving £18,608 to be raised through the crowdfunding campaign. We had until Thursday 15th October to raise the total, otherwise any funds raised would have been lost.

PRT now plans to restore the Steam Engine to full steam functionality and give everyone the chance to experience and enjoy this amazing piece of industrial engineering by showcasing it as an integral part of the Middleport Pottery visitor experience.

The restoration project will help to confirm Staffordshire as an international centre of industrial heritage and will provide valuable opportunities for the local community. One of these opportunities is training for eight volunteers and six students in professional conservation techniques.

The crowdfunding site detailing the donations is here.

More details about our Steam Engine restoration project can be found here.