Stoke-upon-Trent, described as a village in 1795, grew rapidly from the 1820s and 1830s, by which time a new Anglican church had been built as well as new streets. Noted in a trade directory of 1829 as having 'many handsome houses, wharves, warehouses and earthenware manufactories', it became famous for pottery manufactured by the likes of Spode, Copeland, Minton and Goss. However, Stoke is not just the story of ceramics. Other forces shaped the development of the town, including the North Staffordshire Railway Company, the Michelin Tyre Company and even Stoke City FC. Entertainment venues and public houses contributed conspicuously to community life and were part of a vibrant town that began to decline from the 1970s. As Stoke struggles to reassert itself, this book looks back at more prosperous times.