Drayton Brothers Potter (Sunshine Porcelain Potteries Pty Ltd)
Derby Rd, Sunshine
In 1916, two Brothers, Edward "Ted" and William "Jack" Drayton purchased the business of the Commonwealth China Ware Manufacturers Syndicate (Established 1911) located in Derby Rd, Sunshine. The company name was changed to the Drayton Brothers Pottery. They first produced cups and saucers for the Railways and inkwells for the Education Department.
In 1922 the brothers changed the name of the business to Sunshine Porcelain Potteries Pty Ltd. By 1924 they employed 110 people and had contracts for two million insulators for the Post Office and for various State Railways.
At the peak of their business, they were employing over 330 people and producing cups, saucers, plates, inkwells, electric jugs and insulators. At one stage to meet the demand for insulators the company was producing 45 - 50 thousand insulators a week.
Albert, one of Ted's sons founded the "Drayton Refractories Pty Ltd" business in Market Rd and produced spark plug insulators.
In 1936, the Drayton's established the Sunshine Porcelain Potteries Sickness & Benefits Club. This club was administered by employees of the factory.
The pottery also established a cricket team & a table tennis team. The cricket club's home ground was railway property that was located behind the factory. The railways ultimately removed permission for the club to use this land as they wished to build a laneway linking Stanford Street with Derby Road.
The Drayton Family were good private & corporate citizens for the local community for it's sponsorship of local clubs and sporting teams, donations to the original Sunshine Hospital, the Sunshine Horticultural Society and St. Albans Hall. Many of the family members were active members of the local clubs and organized or participated in fund raising events for local charities.
After the first world war the company had a policy of employing local returned soldiers. During the depression of the 1930's the company would provide shelter and meals for the homeless at night
In 1958, the pottery business was sold to Stanger & Co Ltd and the new owners closed the pottery business in 1963.
Drayton St, Sunshine was named after this family.
Ref: Sunshine Recorder Series 5, No 51, September 2019 & Martin Brabon & the Drayton Family