The story behind the success...

Our Story | Dartington Crystal

Dartington Glass as it was originally called was established in 1967, in Torrington, Devon, as a manufacturer of quality glassware. Over the years, it has developed many ranges of crystal and glassware based on its key skills of design and glass making.

The story began in the 1920’s at the beautiful Dartington Hall in Devon when a wealthy American heiress and her Yorkshireman husband, Dorothy and Leonard Elmhurst founded the Dartington Hall Trust. Based at Dartington, near Totnes, South Devon, their original vision was to assist the economic regeneration of rural areas through a combination of enterprises spanning business, education, the arts and country crafts.

During the early 1960’s, it became evident to the Trust, that to the north of the county there was an ever-increasing demand for new industry due to population migration to the cities. This depopulation and the lack of employment for young people was the basis for which the idea of a glass-making factory evolved.

In order to provide the expertise required for this enterprising idea, the Trust recruited a team of 16 glass blowers from Sweden and brought them to Devon. The factory was officially opened in June 1967 with a workforce of 35.

Over the following years, glass blowing skills were taught to English craftsmen, working to an elegant, clean design ethos derived from our Scandinavian roots and subsequently adopted by British designers. Many of the original glass blowers remained in Torrington and have been a key strength over the years in developing Dartington Crystal into the leading name in contemporary style English crystal.

\Today we have customers through out the UK and overseas including major department stores, garden centres, tabletop and independent gift retailers. We also have a well developed capability in the B2B, Hospitality and Contract markets. We are proud to be the only remaining large scale producer of crystal and glass in the UK and we remain an important regional employer with 150 staff. Nearly 100% of our crystal is still made in Devon while we design and source other glassware from selected European suppliers.

 We retain a passion for strong design and well made products that will be used and enjoyed. We hope you will share our passion.