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Thursday, August 11, 2005

A calming cuppa stops Peter going potty


The past 12 months have sent Maitland businessman Peter Hilder potty.
It's not the state of the economy that has earned the Town Pools owner the tag however, but the growing collection of teapots in his office.
Nearing 70 and still expanding, the collection sprang from a simple desire a year ago to find some new containers for his ferns.
"I had this one fern in my office that looked like it was in a teapot and I thought it would be great if I could transplant some more into actual teapots," he said.
"I went and bought half a dozen teapots, but the girls (in the office) said they looked too good to break up for fern pots so I put them on a shelf instead.
"It's great fun, it's bright and colourful and a wonderful talking point for my customers.
"I'd say we'might be the only pool company in Australia with its own teapot collection."
But it's not just Mr Hilder who is proud to be potty.
Thousands of people converge on Morpeth for two weeks every year for the Weird and Wonderful Novelty Teapot Festival at the Morpeth Gallery.
The festival features a staggering 3524 teapots from around Australia and across the world, with all pots for sale. It will open on August 18.
Mr Hilder's fascination with teapots has prompted him to build three shelves in his office to accommodate the collection, which includes pots with legs, miniature pots no bigger than a thumb and pots shaped like elephants and chickens.
But it's the teapots with the holes in the middle that have really piqued his curiosity.
"They seem to go against the whole principle of a teapot, which is to keep the tea warm," Mr Hilder said.

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