A pottery manufacturer, which has been producing artefacts for more than a 130 years in its namesake town, has been forced to close its local shop.
A rare model of a potter at a wheel, from around 1970, at the pottery
Staff at the Poole Pottery Store, Poole Quay, Dorset, were told the shop will shut because of declining sales.
Managers said they were committed to ensuring the manufacturing side of the business survived.
Poole Borough Council said it was sad to hear about the "unexpected closure" of the pottery's retail outlet.
'Concern for workforce'
Poole Pottery was founded by a builder's merchant and ironmonger in 1873 and remains at its original site.
Jeffrey Zemmel, managing director, and Roy Simmons, chairman, said sales in the core business had increased by 20% in 2006, and UK and export sales were on the rise.
They added retail sales in Poole were not high enough to maintain the existing shop.
The Poole Pottery Store had been due to move to the town's Dolphin Quays early in 2007.
John McBride, of Poole Borough Council, said: "Our principal concern is for the workforce and their families, particularly as this announcement has been made so close to Christmas."