Stoke-on-Trent, often known simply as “Stoke” is a city in the county of Staffordshire. Also commonly known as “The Potteries”, the city is synonymous with ceramics and boasts a great selection of independent and outlet shopping destinations. Stoke is considered the home of the pottery industry in England and this is reflected in the unique selection of pottery and ceramics on offer, from large factory outlets to small independent retailers.
Aside from all the ceramics, Stoke is home to Staffordshire University and the respected Regent Theatre. In terms of kids’ attractions Stoke is surely one of the best places to be in the country. Alton Towers, the country’s top theme park, is a ten mile drive away and the Waterworld indoor swimming complex is only a stone’s throw from the Hanley area of the city.
Stoke’s main shopping area is the Potteries Shopping Centre which boasts over 85 units and is home to favourite high street brands such as Debenhams, Next, HMV and La Senza. Marks and Spencer, T.K. Maxx and BHS also have major stores in the city. But let’s be serious, the only thing a true shopaholic should be after in Stoke is pottery – and boy are you spoiled for choice. The most famous pottery house in Stoke and, indeed, in the country is Wedgwood and Royal Doulton. Visit the Wedgwood Museum visitor centre for a quick history lesson before heading over to the Wedgwood outlet store to start building your pottery collection. Alternatively, why not visit the Dudson Museum, which is the oldest surviving family business in the entire ceramic tableware industry. The Denby factory outlet and the Gladstone Pottery Museum are also located in the city. The city also has a number of outdoor and indoor markets, including those located at Market Square and Fountain Square and the weekly Hanley Market.