menu button


Ironstone is a type of vitreous pottery first made in England in the early 19th century. It is often classed as earthenware, although in appearance and properties it is similar to fine stoneware. There is no iron in ironstone - its name is derived from its notable strength and durability.

Developed in the 19th century by potters in Staffordshire, as a cheaper, mass-produced alternative to porcelain, it’s undecorated ranges soon became the below-stairs tableware and kitchenware of choice. Plain, unadorned, ironstone water jugs, pudding moulds, platters, mixing and pouring bowls in various white and off-white hues formed the backbone of the 19th and early 20th century kitchen. Their everyday functionality is appealing as it is today as it was then, and we at A G Hendy & Co are particularly fond of these practical, white, clean-lined early ceramics, and we constantly strive to stock a comprehensive and quality range.


Our vintage china is genuinely old, and is not in production today.  As a consequence it will have been previously owned and used, and so will not appear as if brand new.  However all the pieces we buy and sell in our on-line shop are in very good condition, without cracks, chips or excessive wear – unless specified on an item’s description.

 Wear & Flaws

The china may include some of the following:

  • Minor flaws consistent with the date of manufacture, such as pitting, defects or particles in the glaze
  • Over-glazed chips, caused and rectified during manufacture
  • Light surface scratching or light wear to the glaze, only noticeable on close inspection – for example, knife scratches on plates
  • Fine crazing and feathering of the glaze
  • Some discoloration to unglazed rims and to undersides
  • Slight dulling of the glaze

Specified damage

Occasionally, an antique item has some damage. By damage we mean a crack, a hair-line crack, a chip or a part missing (such as the lid to an item). We always draw customers’ attention to any such damage: we specify and photograph it as part of the item’s description. Damage will be reflected in the item’s pricing. We always aim to stock perfect items but sometimes some pieces are irresistible and, in spite of their faults (a crack or a chip, or both), their age and charm win out and we can’t resist the purchase.

Do call us

If you would prefer to call us to get a completely detailed description of the item you are buying or to give us exacting measurements, rather than order on line, then please do, and we will be delighted to talk to you and, if you would prefer, can also take your payment over the phone.


We cannot guarantee vintage china for its original intended use. Some of our china was originally made for oven use or to hold very hot liquids, however we would not recommend that you do not use it as such, and suggest that these items should now be used as serving dishes, hold cooler contents or be purely decorative.


We do not accept returns of vintage goods bought in the shop or on-line. Please see our Terms & Conditions

Out of Stock

We apologise if we are out of stock of a vintage item you would like to buy. This is because the product is vintage and cannot be ordered in by us, and we have to source these items from all over the country, as and when they turn up. We do our best to keep as many products within each range in stock. On the occasion we don’t have what you are looking for, please do contact us and we can let you know as soon as the next one arrives at our store.


The measurements given are to within 0.5 cm / ¼” of a dimension. If you need a more exacting measurement in millimeters of the actual item that we will be sending you, then please do contact us first before ordering.

The diameter is the measure taken from the widest part of the circumference of a circular-shaped item, all handles, flanges and spouts excluded.

The width is the measurement taken across the length of a rectangular or square item, at the widest point.

The length is taken from a rectangular or oval item’s longest dimension, any handles excluded.

The height is the measure taken from the foot of the item to the very top, including the lid (if the piece has one).