The ‘Pennine’ range first appeared in 1965, designed and modelled by Eric Owen, with the shape actually being known as ‘Cotswold’. The term ‘Pennine’ is the name given to the Cotswold shapes decorated with a dark brown / amber glaze. The range was also available in a pale green / cream vitrified glaze which was referred to as ‘Cambrian’.
The in-house magazine, the ‘Wedgwood Review’, described the range in March 1965 as ‘The Shape for Modern Living’ and commented “Wedgwood’s new look in tableware for 1965 is a studio-type range of shapes with chunky, textured appearance, that are designed for the more relaxed and casual entertaining which is a feature of modern-living in the mid sixties.”
The ‘Wedgwood Review’ went on to describe how the new ware was evolved by the production and research departments, overseen by Eric Owen, with the ‘brief’ to produce a “…tough body, for a versatile range of shapes in oven-to-tableware which for decorative effect would rely on specially-developed glazes.” The shape was initially to be distinguished by “…a crisply modelled relief pattern – similar to the form of a pinecone” which was then further accentuated by “…the natural flow of [the] glaze.”
Eric Owen tasked himself with eliminating the more vulnerable parts of the shapes and also strengthening weak-spots in order to increase resistance to chipping. This goal was epitomised by the short and sturdy spouts of teapots, and also the handles of the sauceboat, teacup and cream jug. Other items were evolved to serve numerous purposes which reduced the number of items that the customer needed to buy.
The last time the Pennine range was produced in any quantity was in the early 1980s, with the ware finally becoming non-current in February 1987.