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May 8, 2024

Fun Things to Do in Stoke-On-Trent

StokeonTrent activities

Stoke-on-Trent may be best known for its ceramics industry, but there’s so much more to discover here besides ceramics! Museums, shops and even a monkey forest make for a fantastic day trip experience.

Discover more of the city’s past at the Potteries Museum & Art Gallery, where local ceramics and an WWII Spitfire can be seen. Also nearby is Etruria Industrial Museum on Caldon Canal with similar exhibits.


Stoke-on-Trent, an historic pottery center, offers plenty of places for visitors to learn about ceramics and get hands-on experience. The Potteries Museum & Art Gallery features local ceramics as art while Gladstone Pottery Museum takes visitors back to an original Victorian factory; finally Trentham Estate features gardens, a forest filled with monkeys and an amusement park designed specifically for kids.

Visit Emma Bridgewater Factory and Tour, then have hands-on fun in their Decorating Studio by selecting and painting your own design – then glazed and fired to become part of Emma Bridgewater pottery! Or treat yourself to an Afternoon Tea Experience Day which includes both activities plus delicious Afternoon Tea served on Emma Bridgewater pottery!

Stoke-on-Trent’s name is an amalgam of all six towns comprising it; sometimes referred to as “The City of Five Towns”, given by novelist Arnold Bennett with recognisable aliases used for all except Fenton.

City of Stoke-on-Trent boasts two higher education institutions: City of Stoke-on-Trent Sixth Form College in Hanley and Stoke-on-Trent College – both part of University of North Staffordshire’s Cultural Quarter campus based out of Hanley.

Pottery has been produced in this area since at least the 12th century. With the Industrial Revolution came increased innovation from local potters such as Josiah Spode’s bone china production line and Thomas Minton’s manufactory.

Pottery-making can be an intricate process requiring many techniques. Clay, grog and colorants all play an integral role, with additives often used to add texture or reduce shrinkage when drying; fine sand or bentonite may be added to increase plasticity for easier working; colorants or ash may also be added for desired patterns or colors.

Family Fun

Stoke-on-Trent is an ideal family destination, boasting world-class museums, picturesque country parks and ceramic cafes that allow children to get creative through pottery painting. Children will especially love visiting Emma Bridgewater Factory where you can meet potters, book a decorating inspiration experience or afternoon tea experience day day, as well as purchasing your favourite Emma Bridgewater pattern from their shop!

Families will appreciate the Potteries Theatre Company for children-centric shows and events or visit Westport Lake visitor centre to get close to nature and explore Staffordshire lake. There are also top-notch restaurants, lively bars, stunning gardens, parks and mesmerising landscapes all over Staffordshire city center to discover!

Alton Towers amusement park in nearby Farley offers thrills galore for all the family at its famous Alton Towers amusement park, offering rides, attractions and live entertainment – not to mention unforgettable characters such as Phoebe and Funella from Sesame Street! For an exciting thrill ride experience that won’t break the bank.

Music enthusiasts will delight in visiting one of Stoke-on-Trent’s lively clubs such as the Golden Torch – once considered the “Heart” of Northern Soul music in the early 1970s – or Shelley’s Laserdome Nightclub that helped pioneer house and rave music in Stoke during the 80s and 90s.

Frank Bough, best-known as host of Nationwide and Breakfast Time on Channel 4, as well as Anthea Turner who worked on Blue Peter, both hail from this city. Additionally, Bruno Brookes of BBC Radio 1 DJ fame as well as singer Carl De Marco both trace their roots here.

Stoke-on-Trent is home to the world-famous Wedgwood vase designed by Josiah Wedgwood in 1815 – now held by the British Museum in London as an icon of English art and craftsmanship. Stoke-on-Trent itself boasts strong cultural and industrial hub status with a strong sense of identity; its motto translates as ‘Vis Unita Fortior” meaning ‘Unity Strength Strengther”.

Arts & Culture

The Potteries region, commonly referred to as The Potteries, boasts an abundant culture that spans visual art, literature, theatre, media and music. Additionally, its famed pottery heritage remains an important source of inspiration among local artists today.

Potteries has several museums and art galleries, with the Potteries Museum & Art Gallery drawing many visitors each year. This popular attraction boasts an excellent ceramics collection as well as hosting several rotating and recurring exhibitions throughout the year. Furthermore, it houses one of Anglo-Saxon gold’s greatest hoards: Staffordshire Hoard.

As well as formal art classes, there are also workshops and classes dedicated to painting or pottery that offer something new for kids or adults alike. Popular offerings include drawing, abstract painting and pottery classes – perfect ways to unwind after work or simply explore something new!

Stoke-on-Trent boasts an active music scene, with several well-known musicians hailing from its borders – most notably Robbie Williams who hails from Stoke. Furthermore, this city also has an established northern soul tradition; Golden Torch Nightclub was the source of this style.

As well as music, Birmingham is also known for its cuisine. There are restaurants serving cuisine from around the globe as well as traditional dishes unique to this area such as Staffordshire oatcakes that can be eaten either sweet or savory with various filling options.

City residents also benefit from professional theatre companies and plays, including the Staffordshire Repertory Company and independent venues that host events throughout the year. Radio and television stations such as BBC Radio Stoke were launched here first, along with an award-winning daily newspaper, the Stoke-on-Trent Sentinel.


Stoke-on-Trent boasts some of the UK’s premier shopping experiences, from Hanley’s Intu Potteries Shopping Center with 90 stores to Stoke-on-Trent Market with its variety of shops and eateries – both offering something for every shopper whether that means finding their ideal outfit or just something quick for lunch! Stoke-on-Trent truly has something to offer everyone – be it fashion or fast food!

The Potteries boasts an extensive history as a ceramic manufacturing hub, which can be witnessed through free or low-cost tours offered at several museums and factories. Visitors can also explore picturesque parks and canals that make for ideal walks or picnics, while thrilling roller coaster rides or pottery workshops may be offered for family fun. Trentham Estate provides ample room to unleash creativity with spacious gardens, treetop walkways, and charming fairy trails; ideal settings to experience The Potteries first-hand!

Stoke-on-Trent boasts an abundance of entertainment venues, from three top theatres and two professional football clubs to some cult music venues. Additionally, its rich cultural heritage is celebrated through museums and galleries open to the public.

Visits to the city aren’t complete without exploring one or more of its many pubs and bars, which provide ideal settings for intimate dates or social get-togethers with friends. In addition, the area features luxury hotels with spa services where visitors can unwind.

Stoke-on-Trent boasts a rich culture and fascinating industrial past. Visitors can explore its legendary ceramics at the Gladstone Pottery Museum or witness a working coal-fired ceramic factory in Longton. Furthermore, visitors will love exploring its historic streets and canals in the heart of this vibrant city. Burslem Park, which is one of the largest registered Victorian parks in the country, and Westport Lake offer recreational space to enjoy the great outdoors. Visitors to Stafford can explore its vibrant art scene, with galleries and studios featuring work by Arthur Berry (a novelist himself), Jack Simcock, and Glenys Barewall among many others. Additionally, Stafford is home to both the British Ceramic Research Association headquarters as well as Staffordshire University which offers courses in ceramic technology.

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