Our Story

We are a family run business and in one form or another we have been established since 1992, when Chris Eley started a part time retirement business for a "bit of fun".

He started with stalls at Wimborne and Dorchester Markets in Dorset, dealing in general bric-a-brac. As an enthusiastic Poole Pottery collector himself, it naturally followed that he found himself dealing more and more with Poole Pottery. He quickly established a name for himself, and people started to ask him to look out for pieces for them, especially pieces of discontinued tableware.

This was the birth of The Poole Pottery Replacement Service.

As time passed, Chris found that he was also being asked to find other makes of china and pottery. The most common requests being for Denby & Hornsea Pottery.

In 1997, his son Mike, started a business to run alongside his, called The Denby & Poole Pottery Replacement Service. Mike dealt with the Denby, and all the Poole and Hornsea business he generated was outsourced to Chris.

In 1999, due to customer demand The Denby & Poole Pottery Replacement Service opened it's doors to those customers looking for any other make of china or pottery including decorative and collectable items. To reflect this wider service the name of the business was changed to The China Detectives and they searched for all makes of discontinued tableware, specialising in Denby, Hornsea, Johnson Bros, Langley, Marks & Spencer, Poole, Royal Albert, Royal Doulton, Royal Worcester and Wedgwood. Chris continued to run The Poole Pottery Replacement Service, which had expanded to incorporate Hornsea, to become the Poole Pottery & Hornsea Replacement Service.

In 2004 Mike sold The China Detectives to a rival company enabling him to embrace other business opportunities which had come his way. Chris continued to develop his business and 10 years on they joined forces again to create MrPottery.co.uk.