The Radcliffe Red List of Endangered Crafts

 

Fender making

 

The making of rope fenders for boats, with a central core and a knotted cover.

 

Status Currently viable (see ‘Other information’ for further details)
Craft category  Textile; Plant fibre
Historic area of significance
Area currently practised
Origin in the UK
Minimum no. of craftspeople required
Current no. of trainees
Current no. of skilled craftspeople
Current total no. of craftspeople

 

History

There are two types of fender making, the main differences being in the patterns of the fenders:

  • fenders for narrow boats and the inland waterways – the market is healthy and there are enough craftspeople, but not so many that there isn’t enough work to go round.
  • fenders for maritime boats – there are fewer people making maritime fenders, but the skills are essentially the same

There are two main markets for rope fenders:

  • owner-boaters
  • hire fleet boats

 

Techniques

 

Local forms

 

Sub-crafts

 

Issues affecting the viability of the craft

 

Support organisations

 

Craftspeople currently known

 

Other information

Status: Fender making is considered to be vulnerable but safe. While the numbers are relatively small, there are enough people doing it and making a living from it, and enough of a market for it to be healthy. While craftspeople may not be in their 20s, not everyone is over the age of 60.

 

References