City & Guilds Foundation support bursary for Black and minority ethnic trainees

Nkosi KerrThe City & Guilds Foundation and Heritage Crafts are delighted to announce a new bursary for Black and minority ethnic trainees in heritage crafts.

The first bursary is being awarded to Nkosi Kerr, who moved to the UK from Tobago in 2019. An incredible talent, he was taught carpentry by his father, a well-respected craftsman. With the support of the bursary, Nkosi will complete a Level 3 Bench Joinery course at the Building Crafts College in London setting himself up to make significant progress in his carpentry career.

It is still the case that the UK craft sector does not accurately reflect the diversity of the UK as a whole and, for this reason, we are taking positive action to target this bursary at Black and ethnically diverse groups who are currently under-represented. The City & Guilds Foundation and Heritage Crafts believe that the value of our craft heritage comes from the diversity of skills and traditions across all of our communities, whatever their background.

Nkosi KerrThe next bursary will be opened for applications on the Heritage Crafts website in the summer. To be notified when applications go live, please email Mary Lewis at mary@heritagecrafts.org.uk.

The City & Guilds Foundation is part of the City & Guilds charity, and its programmes are targeted to help everyone, no matter who they are or where they come from, have opportunities to succeed.

City & Guilds Foundation Advocacy Lead Lauren Roberts said:

“Quality skills development for all is at the heart of what we do at the City & Guilds Foundation. We are incredibly excited to be working with Heritage Crafts in their mission to support black and ethnically diverse individuals, and are very proud to support learners on their journey to be highly valued members of the heritage community.”

Heritage Crafts Operations Director Daniel Carpenter said:

“We are thrilled to be working with the City & Guilds Foundation to provide bursaries for Black and ethnically diverse groups and help redress the historic imbalance of opportunity that has resulted from both overt and hidden discrimination within the heritage crafts sector. We are very excited to see the new generation of makers as much more reflective of modern British society.”

This bursary was first offered in 2021 sponsored by DCA Consulting and the recipient was lime plasterer Daahir Mohamed.

 

The Prince’s Master Crafters

The Prince’s Master Crafters

When: Wednesday 18 May, 8pm
Where:
Sky Arts, Freeview Channel 11, and streaming service NOW

Heritage Crafts President HRH The Prince of Wales has lent his name to a new seven-part series, The Prince’s Master Crafters: The Next Generation, set to spotlight Britain’s rich heritage of traditional crafts, airing this month on Sky Arts. Backed by Heritage Crafts and The Prince’s Foundation who put forward the featured experts from amongst Heritage Crafts members, the series is produced by Spun Gold TV and hosted by Jim Moir, and will see a selection of top amateur craftspeople take on a variety of crafting challenges to supercharge their skills before each of them creates a final showcase piece to present to His Royal Highness in person.

When it comes to traditional crafts, Britain has a rich heritage – from wood carving to blacksmithing and weaving to stained glass – but we risk losing them forever. Last year alone in the UK, four heritage crafts were declared extinct and a further 56 critically endangered on the Heritage Crafts Red List of Endangered Crafts.

Drawn from across the country, the six amateur craftspeople will explore the history and importance of six key disciplines. They’re joined by some of the country’s leading experts who each week set them a new task within their crafts. The challenges and experts are as follows:

  • Wood carving – Sarah Goss asks the craftspeople to create a carving inspired by William Morris and the arts and crafts movement
  • Stained glass – Derek Hunt challenges the craftspeople to create a stained-glass panel to include a symbol
  • Weaving – Rezia Wahid sets an intricate task asking our craftspeople to use different types of weaving in as they weave material of their choice
  • Blacksmithing – Phil Carter challenges our craftspeople to create a fire poker with a leaf detailing
  • Stone carving – Zoe Wilson sets a task to create a stone carved leaf
  • Pargeting – Johanna Welsh’s task for the crafters is to create a pargeted panel of leaves and acorns
  • Grand final

The final episode will see the crafters visit Dumfries House, home to The Prince’s Foundation, to seek inspiration for their showcase pieces. They’ll then take part in a graduation like no other as they present their individual pieces to His Royal Highness himself at his private residence, Highgrove House. All the showcase pieces are then displayed at The Prince’s Foundation’s new training base at Highgrove.

Phil Edgar-Jones, Director of Sky Arts, commented:

“Over the last two years many of us have taken up artistic pursuits and more people are getting into crafts – from stained glass to woodcarving and everything in between. The Prince of Wales has championed those traditional crafts for many years, so it feels like there’s no better time to showcase the brilliant skills of this cohort of crafters. And with Jim Moir at the helm guiding us through the show it promises to be an entertaining and enlightening delight.”

New partnership with Axminster Tools

Axminister ToolsAxminster Tools and Heritage Crafts are delighted to announce a brand new partnership, featuring a new Woodworker of the Year award to be launched later this summer. 

Global suppliers of woodworking tools and machinery, Axminster Tools has spent 50 years building their family business into the renowned organisation it is today.

Sarah Goss, woodcarver

Sarah Goss, woodcarver

Working together with makers and creators at all levels, from trade professionals through to craft enthusiasts, their commitment to supporting woodworking skills fits perfectly with the ethos of Heritage Crafts, the UK charity set up in 2010 to support and safeguard traditional craft skills as a fundamental part of the UK’s living heritage.

As well as advocating on behalf of the heritage crafts sector (including its membership of more than 1,200) to policymakers and politicians, it raises awareness of the importance of these skills through projects such as The Red List of Endangered Crafts and The President’s Award for Endangered Crafts set up by the charity’s President HRH The Prince of Wales.

Along with the new Woodworker of the Year award, the partners will be collaborating on a range of other exciting initiatives to be announced in due course.

Axminster Tools Managing Director Alan Styles said:

“We see part of our role in the woodworking community as helping to ensure practical skills and knowledge are not only sustainable and protected but shared with others. Our teams are built from industry professionals, craftspeople and passionate woodworkers and we work hard to ensure that their knowledge is freely accessible to all and able to be passed from generation to generation. We believe that the benefits of celebrating and encouraging craft skills are far-reaching which is why we’re delighted to partner with Heritage Crafts.”

Heritage Crafts Director Daniel Carpenter said:

“We are thrilled to be working with Axminster Tools on this partnership to continue to lift the profile of woodworking skills as part of the UK’s cultural life and economy. Axminster’s support for skills at all levels fits perfectly with our vision of a healthy and viable ‘craft skills ecology’, providing a range of fulfilling careers and pastimes for the next generation.”

 

Heritage Crafts and Sussex Heritage Trust support millwrighting trainee

Adam WinsorA trainee millwright has been awarded a grant to help safeguard one of Sussex’s most endangered craft skills.

Heritage Crafts and the Sussex Heritage Trust (SHT) have awarded the grant through the Heritage Crafts’ Endangered Crafts Fund, which was launched in 2019 to increase the likelihood of endangered crafts surviving into the next generation.

Millwright Fred Maillardet and David Pierce will train 18-year-old volunteer miller Adam Winsor to be trainee millwright at Oldland Windmill in West Sussex and Wicken Windmill in Cambridgeshire.

Restoring and maintaining windmills in the UK is presently mainly carried out by an ageing workforce, made up of a few commercial millwrights and a significantly larger number of volunteers with wood and metal working skills and experience on restoring and maintaining mills.

The craft is critically endangered, partly due to a lack of younger people becoming involved. Training and encouraging individuals such as Adam is a valuable opportunity to pass on the endangered craft skills to the next generation.

Adam WinsorIn 2021 Heritage Crafts published the third edition of its groundbreaking Red List of Endangered Crafts, the first research of its kind to rank the UK’s traditional crafts by the likelihood that they will survive into the next generation. The report assessed 244 crafts to ascertain those which are at greatest risk of disappearing, of which four were classified as extinct, 74 as ‘endangered’ and a further 56 as ‘critically endangered’.

The successful project joins five previous Sussex recipients funded through the partnership between Heritage Crafts and SHT, including two flint wallers, a brick maker, a trug maker and a wallpaper maker. Nationally, 42 projects have been funded through the Endangered Crafts Fund since 2019.

Mary Lewis, Heritage Crafts Endangered Crafts Manager, said:

“For many reasons, not least the COVID-19 pandemic, our craft skills are at more risk than ever before. We are delighted to be working in partnership with the Sussex Heritage Trust to address the specific challenges to endangered skills and knowledge in Sussex, a region renowned for its craftsmanship and material heritage.”

Simon Knight DL, Chairman of the Sussex Heritage Trust, said:

“Excellent architecture and design, traditional building skills and craftmanship are an important part of the rich heritage of Sussex. This partnership with Heritage Crafts addresses the particular challenges of these crafts and facilitate the transfer of endangered crafts, building skills and knowledge to the next generation.”

For more information about the Endangered Crafts Fund, email Heritage Crafts Endangered Crafts Manager Mary Lewis at mary@heritagecrafts.org.uk or SHT General Manager, Helen Reeve at helen.reeve@sussexheritagetrust.org.uk.

Read the full press release

Forthcoming online events

Since the first COVID-19 lockdown we have been running a series of free online events on Zoom. Here you can find out what event we have coming up. Click here to re-watch the recordings for some of the previous events.

 

Coming up

 

Heritage Crafts South West of England members Zoom meeting – 31 May 2022, 7pm

Peer support and networking meeting facilitated by Daniel Carpenter exclusively for Heritage Crafts members. If you’re a current member in the South West of England and wish to attend, email us for the joining instructions. If you’re not yet a member, please consider joining.

 

In Conversation with Dave French and Sarah Ready – 14 June 2022, 7pm

Devon-based Dave French is a fifth-generation withy pot maker, using willow rods (withies) to make the traditional crab and lobster pots used throughout history all around the British coast with regional variations that made them instantly recognisable. Up until a few years ago the craft seemed headed towards extinction, with pots being made solely for decorative or historical interest. But now, helped in part by Heritage Crafts, Sarah Ready is not only learning the skill of making withy pots, but fishing with them in a traditionally sustainable way that points to a true resurgence.

 

In Conversation with Rose Sinclair – 5 July 2022, 7pm

Rose Sinclair is a designer, textile practitioner and academic specialising in technology and textiles design education, and researching the crafts of Dorcas Clubs, as used by Caribbean women on arrival in the UK in the 50s and 60s. In this special ‘In Conversation’ event we talk to Rose about her work and research interests, as well as the exhibition she is currently co-curating with the William Morris Gallery until 11 September, entitled Althea McNish: Colour Is Mine. The retrospective is one of the first to explore this designer and textile artist, one of the first designers of Caribbean descent who would go on to achieve international recognition and become one of the UK’s most innovative designers. It includes her transformative impact on mid-century design and her enduring influence on design today..

 

Heritage Crafts East Midlands members Zoom meeting – date to be confirmed

Peer support and networking meeting facilitated by Daniel Carpenter and Sally Morgan exclusively for Heritage Crafts members. If you’re a current member in the East Midlands and wish to attend, email us for the joining instructions. If you’re not yet a member, please consider joining.

 

Heritage Crafts Northern Ireland members Zoom meeting – date to be confirmed

Peer support and networking meeting facilitated by Daniel Carpenter and Emma Whitehead exclusively for Heritage Crafts members. If you’re a current member in Northern Ireland and wish to attend, email us for the joining instructions. If you’re not yet a member, please consider joining.

 

HCA Scotland members Zoom meeting – date to be confirmed

Peer support and networking meeting facilitated by Daniel Carpenter, Mary Lewis, Louise Butler and Helen Voce exclusively for HCA members. If you’re a current member in Scotland and wish to attend, email us for the joining instructions. If you’re not yet a member, please consider joining.

 

Heritage Crafts West Midlands & Marches members Zoom meeting – date to be confirmed

Peer support and networking meeting facilitated by Mary Lewis and Mike Taylor exclusively for Heritage Crafts members. If you’re a current member in the West Midlands & Marches and wish to attend, email us for the joining instructions. If you’re not yet a member, please consider joining.

 

Heritage Crafts Wales members Zoom meeting – date to be confirmed

Peer support and networking meeting facilitated by Daniel Carpenter, Mary Lewis and Clare Revera exclusively for Heritage Crafts members. If you’re a current member in Wales and wish to attend, email us for the joining instructions. If you’re not yet a member, please consider joining.

 

Heritage Crafts North of England members Zoom meeting – date to be confirmed

Peer support and networking meeting facilitated by Daniel Carpenter and Chrissie Freeth exclusively for Heritage Crafts members. If you’re a current member in the North of England and wish to attend, email us for the joining instructions. If you’re not yet a member, please consider joining.

 

Click here to watch the recordings of previous online events