WORKSHOP: Make a Canoe Paddle

Thursday 23 & Friday 24 August, 10am – 5:30pm, £285  Bookings

During this two-day course with award-winning boat builder Colin Henwood, you will learn how to shape a single canoe paddle from Ash using traditional skills and tools.

Take home a unique and usable canoe paddle ready for a varnish or an oil finish. Tools and materials included. No experience necessary. Places are limited to 8, so please book early!

Master craftsman and boatbuilder Colin Henwood has over 40 years experience building and restoring wooden boats. He founded the boatyard, Henwood and Dean Boatbuilders, in 1982 specialising in restoring and building wooden Thames launches. The boatyard received many awards in the UK and abroad, and in 2014 Colin was awarded Maker of the Year by the Heritage Crafts Association.

CHILDRENS WORKSHOP: Make Your Own Stool with Hattie Speed

Thursday 16 & Friday 17 August, 10:30 – 12:30 & 1:30 – 3:30pm, £35  Bookings

In an age when young hands often seem to be more on screens and key boards than making and materials, sign up to one of our courses designed and run by leading furniture maker and designer Hattie Speed.

Watch or help with assembling and creating their own stool that has been designed to fit and become one object with all the others at the end of the class before going home with its proud maker.

This course has been specifically designed to engage the mind and the hand in making, previous experience is not necessary, but parent/carer supervision is required for children under 12 years old.

For children 7-16 years.

CHILDREN’S WORKSHOP: Make A Latticework Lampshade

Sunday 12 August, 10:30am – 12:30pm, £35  Bookings

Learn how to weave birch plywood into an attractive lampshade to take home for your bedroom.

Assemble plywood strips into panels and rivet them into drum shapes. These will then be finished with either a base for a wastepaper basket or a hanging light shade fitting.

Suitable for ages 8 years upwards. Only 8 spaces available so please book early!

CHILDREN’S WORKSHOP: Making Wooden Propeller Flyers

Saturday 11 & Sunday 12 August, 10:30am – 12:30pm, £35  Bookings

Make a hand powered vintage propeller toy with their inventor, Wiltshire woodsman Dom Parish.  Modelled after the natural flying capacities of sycamore seeds, the propeller or ‘spinstar’ appeals in a tangible way to the child in all of us.

Learn how to steam bend wooden components into a blade, assemble them to a wooden shaft, colour them with lacquer and brand them with your own design.

At the end the course we will all perfect our flying techniques in front of the barn.

Suitable for age 8 years upwards. Limited to 8 spaces so please book early!


WORKSHOP: Make a ‘Wiltshire Chair’ with Chris Eckersley

Thursday 9 – Saturday 11 August, £385  Bookings

Making is thinking; process is learning.

Understand materials and evolve a design with two of our leading makers on a two and a half day chair-making course where you will design and be guided through the making of your own chair out of Ash to take home with you. Dave Green, master craftsman and founder of chairmaking company Sitting Firm will join us on the final day to pick a winning design which will be exhibited on a plinth in our Material Wood show and may even go in to production and sold through the gallery.

After a short introduction to traditional construction methods, Chris Eckersley will facilitate a workshop of design-through-making based on the idea of the ‘Wiltshire Chair’. In fact there has never, as yet, been any such thing as a Wiltshire chair, but there easily could have because very many areas of Britain have a distinct design that is particular to their region. These have been described by Chris as ‘Slow Chairs’ and he says:

‘Slow’ of course means the opposite of ‘fast’. If fast food is homogenised rubbish, then slow food celebrates local traditions and diversity. Instead of a world where everything is the same everywhere, Slow stands up for the handmade, the regional, the authentic, the sustainable. It means knowing where produce comes from, and no surprise horse meat!. Slow means co-operation, not competition. If you think Slow means slow-witted, think again.

Join others of all experience levels to learn and make with one of the country’s most creative minds and makers, on a course which treads a fine line between craft and art-school experimentation.

The course starts on Thursday morning at 10:00am. Coffee, lunch and afternoon tea included in the price for Thursday and Friday.

Recommended for all skill levels and age 18 and upwards. Places are limited to 8, so please do book early.

Accommodation available separately.

Chris Eckersley is an artist and designer from Birmingham who originally studied Sculpture at Gloucestershire College of Art, and subsequently Design at Central Saint Martins where he became a Visiting Tutor.

His work covers drawing, three-dimensional design and object-making, research into measurement and proportion, sculpture, and designs for furniture.
Chris is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, and a Fellow of the Learned Society of Extra Ordinary Objects.