Currently viable crafts

 

Handle making

 

The hand-turning of wooden handles for tools on a lathe. See the separate entries for pole lathe turning and wood turning.

 

Status Currently viable
Craft category Wood
Historic area of significance UK
Area currently practised UK
Origin in the UK
Current no. of professionals (main income)
Current no. of professionals (sideline to main income)
Current no. of trainees
Current total no. serious amateur makers
Current total no. of leisure makers
Minimum no. of craftspeople required

 

History

 

Techniques

 

Local forms

 

Sub-crafts

 

Issues affecting the viability of the craft

  • Market issues: Tool handles have not been made by hand in any volume since the 1920s/1930s – firstly due to mechanisation, then to the introduction of plastic handles, and then the remaining hand turned wooden handles were affected by foreign competition.
  • Foreign competition: Competition from cheap foreign imports
  • Training issues/recruitment issues: Lack of woodworking, metalworking and exposure to craft skills in schools

 

Support organisations

 

Craftspeople currently known

  • Richard Carter Ltd, Huddersfield, Yorkshire. Also manufacture spades and shovels, and edge and other tools. Twenty people working in the factory.
  • Woodware Repetitions Ltd, Sheffield, Yorkshire.
  • Bulldog Tools, Wigan. While the tool heads are forged in India, the tool handles are made in the UK.

The British Wood Turners Association maintains a list of members, which outlines what area of wood turning each craftsperson/company specialises in.

 

Other information

 

References