A new mobile facility to teach neon bending and the restoration of one of the last surviving damask looms are among the projects that have recently received funds to help ensure a better future for some of the UK’s most endangered crafts.
The Heritage Crafts Association (HCA), which earlier this year published the latest edition of its groundbreaking HCA Red List of Endangered Crafts, has awarded the first five grants from its Endangered Crafts Fund, launched in July 2019 to increase the likelihood of endangered crafts surviving into the next generation.
The first five recipients of the HCA Endangered Crafts Fund are:
- Grace Horne, scissor maker – to create dies for the production of hot drop-forged scissor blanks that can be used by Grace and other makers to produce bespoke scissors.
- Deborah White, damask weaver – to restore and use a loom to teach damask weaving to a new generation of weavers.
- Clare Revera, basket maker – to develop and teach a Level 3 City & Guilds course on rare and endangered basket making skills at Westhope College.
- Richard Wheater, neon bender – to build a mobile neon bombarding and vacuum facility to teach neon bending to beginners and intermediate trainees.
- Kate Colin, fan maker – to develop the technical skills of fan making with a view to teaching the craft in future.
The fund was hugely oversubscribed and the HCA hopes to work with many of the unsuccessful candidates to identify other funding and support opportunities.
HCA Endangered Crafts Officer Mary Lewis said:
“We have been overwhelmed by so many wonderful applications and while we wish we had the funds to support them all, we are delighted to have been able to choose projects that we hope will provide future generations with an array of craft skills to which they might not otherwise have access.”
The Endangered Crafts Fund has been set up thanks to a number of generous donations from individuals, from as little as £5 right up to several thousands of pounds. The HCA is now seeking further donations to save even more of Britain’s most endangered crafts from oblivion.
Donations to the Endangered Crafts Fund are welcome at any time – for more information visit www.heritagecrafts.org.uk/ecf. Applications for grants are accepted on a rolling basis, with the next deadline for consideration 29 February 2020. For more information about the fund, email HCA Endangered Crafts Officer Mary Lewis at firstname.lastname@example.org.