BARLASTON, United Kingdom--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Wedgwood, an iconic English pottery brand, announces with great sadness the death of Piers Anthony Weymouth Wedgwood. Lord Wedgwood was a descendent of Josiah Wedgwood I, the 18th century “father of English pottery.” He passed away from cardiac failure at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania January 29, 2014 at age 59.
“Lord Wedgwood was a true English gentleman,” said Pierre de Villemejane, CEO of WWRD, the holding company of Wedgwood. “The Wedgwood family has lost a passionate visionary, and the world has lost an amazing human being. Those of us who were fortunate enough to know and work with Piers have lost a dear friend and an inspiring mentor.”
Born September 20, 1954, on his family’s farm in Kenya, Piers Wedgwood assumed the Wedgwood legacy at age 16 upon the death of his father in 1970. His duties included cleaning the pottery kilns and learning the production methods. His passion, natural charm, heritage and skill shone through, making him the ideal ambassador for Wedgwood and shaping the career he would lead for the next 40 plus years.
Lord Wedgwood went on to devote his working life to the art and industry of English ceramic manufacturing and was very active in the contemporary Wedgwood business, helping to open new markets in India, China and Russia. He also served on the board of trustees of the Wedgwood museum. He was overjoyed to see a 255-year legacy of great innovation and design adapt and thrive in the modern age.
Lord Wedgwood met his wife, formerly Mary Regina Quinn of the Fairmount section of Philadelphia, while showcasing Wedgwood to the Marshall Field Company in Chicago where Mary managed the store’s public relations. The “old English lord” she expected turned out to be a dashing 26 year old and so began a 34-year love affair. Lord Wedgwood is survived by Lady Wedgwood, their daughter, The Hon. Alexandra Mary Kavanaugh Wedgwood and two sisters.
At this time, funeral arrangements have yet to be announced. The family asks that in lieu of flowers, charitable donations be made to the Lord Wedgwood Charity (www.lwcharity.com), a non-profit he founded following a heart attack in 2001 with the goal of placing automatic external defibrillators (AEDs) into high schools and communities.
About WWRD: WWRD is the leading provider of luxury home and lifestyle products worldwide. WWRD manufactures, distributes and sells well-recognized brands including Waterford, Wedgwood, Royal Doulton, Royal Albert, and Johnson Brothers. WWRD maintains unique licensing arrangements with some of the most high-profile innovators in the home and lifestyle market, including Vera Wang, Jasper Conran, Monique Lhuillier, John Rocha, Gordon Ramsay and Donna Hay. WWRD products are distributed through premium department stores and independent retailers and wholesalers around the world, including the United States, the United Kingdom, Japan, Canada, Australia and Ireland. The company employs more than 3,000 people worldwide.