by Richard Buckley, Editor, Business Eye

Ceramic artist Babs Belshaw has returned to live and work outside Coleraine and has opened her new pottery in the courtyard of Blackheath House, near Aghadowey. Blackheath House is a Grade-II listed house and the former stables have been refurbished to include a pottery studio, shop and coffee shop.


“The house is full of historic connections and dates back to 1791” says Babs. “We are 9 miles from the coast. In addition to my pottery studio and shop we have a coffee shop for customers who make the trip”

The Blackheath Pottery was completed last October but unable to open due to Covid restrictions. The building has a glass wall feature to view Babs at work in her studio whilst enjoying a cup of coffee and wee bundt cake in the coffee shop. She has partnered with 3fe, the speciality coffee roaster out of Dublin to offer the best experience possible. The coffee is roasted in Dublin and sourced directly from farmers all over the world. Pottery sales to date have been on-line and Babs has already built up a loyal following for her wares, particularly after Vogue Magazine featured the pottery as number one on its list of Christmas decorations, ahead of such famous names as the Conron Shop and the National Gallery.

Babs Belshaw specialises in porcelain tableware and is inspired by the past honouring the craftsmanship that existed all over Ireland in years gone by. She graduated in Ceramics from Cardiff School of Art and Design and previously worked from studios in Wicklow and Dublin. Irish scenery has proved her inspiration. She says “Potters and scenic coastlines are synonymous. The famous post-war potter Bernard Leach inspired a ceramics movement in Cornwall that’s still going strong to this day. The Causeway Coast and Glens in Northern Ireland is world- famous for its beauty. It’s an ideal area to develop as a destination for pottery and ceramic lovers”

The new venture is also a family affair. Babs’ brother Stephen is in charge of the coffee shop and baking. He has a background in catering and hospitality in the Isle of Man and Australia. So expect some interesting food combinations!

“We are so happy to be open at last and the garden at Blackheath House is perfect now that summer is on its way” says Babs.

Thank-you for your interest. For further information contact Babs Belshaw on 0771 4367890 babs@blackheathpottery.com

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Blackheath House near Aghadowey

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