Thomas Webb and Corbett Ltd
Thomas Webb and George Corbett, the founding partners of Webb and Corbett had both been employed by Thomas Webb and Sons. Their business at the White House glass works flourished, but in 1913 they gave up their lease of the White House and moved to the Coalbournhill works which they continue to occupy. In 1969 the Webb and Corbett business was taken over by the Stoke-on-Trent pottery makers Doulton and in 1980 the name was changed from Webb Corbett to Royal Doulton Tableware Ltd.Thomas Webb and Corbett, Ltd., was founded in 1897 by the brothers Thomas and Herbert Webb, sons of the nineteenth century glassmaker, Thomas Wilkes Webb. The firm commenced business in Brewery Street, Wordsley, near Stourbridge, England, specializing in cut and engraved lead crystal. By 1900 they had built up a considerable home and export business, especially with their polished rock crystal engraving, which found a ready market in the United States.
At Coalbournhill, their site since 1913, some 550 glassworkers fulfill the very exacting conceptions of Webb-Corbett artists and designers, to produce a glass of resplendent beauty, universally recognized as one of the finest glasses in the world.
Specializing in decorated heavy lead crystal, they have noticeably veered away from the older prismatic cutting to lighter, airy designs which ideally complement especially their thinner metal stemware. Dainty buds, flowing tendrils, stems and tiny leaves are recurring motifs in many of Webb-Corbett's most appealing designs. Highly polished designs of this type on pure lead crystal impart amazing brilliance to the glass-something in the nature of a sparkling liquidity.
Although Webb-Corbett have been among the leaders of English glassmakers to depart from so much of the heavy prismatic cutting, they make glass for that demand and do considerable in the way of reproductions; certainly their Waterford reproductions gloriously restore and endear that noble old type. Summing up Webb-Corbett glass, it is little less than an artistic triumph. From a charming austerity in one design they turn to one of imposing simplicity: in other designs they boldly aim at the grandiose, shrewdly avoiding any semblance of ponderous elegance through subtle mollifying lines in shape or decoration.
Webb-Corbett glass truly reveals a remarkable skill in handling the materials of this art.