In 1862, Joseph Ball Shelley became a partner in the firm of Henry Wileman at the Foley China Works in Fenton, Staffordshire. From about 1910, the company began to use the name “Shelley China” on some of its wares and in 1925 it changed its name to Shelley.
Shelley China produced a wide range of products but its art deco tablewares and, to a lesser extent, its chintz wares, are the most sought after.
Both the body, whether fine bone china or earthenware, and the decoration of Shelley China were of high quality, particularly during the late 1920s and 1930s, making it one of the most important manufacturers of this period.
In 1966, Shelley was taken over by Allied English Potteries, now part of the Doulton Group.