Select Page

Heritage Crafts Awards finalists announced

Marsh Christian TrustFollowing a strong year full of high-quality nominations, the finalists for this year’s Heritage Crafts Awards, supported by the Marsh Christian Trust, have been announced.

The finalists are (in alphabetical order):

HCA/Marsh Maker of the Year

  • Fabian Bush, boat builder
  • Rachel Frost, bowed-felt hat maker
  • Tracey Sheppard, glass engraver

HCA/Marsh Trainer of the Year

  • Deborah Carre, cordwainer
  • Delyth Done, blacksmith
  • Kevin Millward, potter
  • Greg Rowland, wheelwright

HCA/Marsh Trainee of the Year

  • Kieran Berry, paper maker
  • Niam Chauhan, luthier
  • Francis Lloyd-Jones, potter
  • Anna Olafsson, hand engraver

HCA/Marsh Volunteer of the Year

  • Colin Garrett, British Violin Making Association and Rowan Armour-Brown Memorial Trust Fund
  • Jane Kerr, Wooden Boatbuilders Trade Association
  • Debbie Richardson, Braid Society

The winners will be announced at a prestigious winner’s reception later in the year.

HCA receives Ruskin Society Award

The Ruskin SocietyThe Heritage Crafts Association has been recognised by the Ruskin Society with a special award for its contribution to supporting and safeguarding heritage crafts during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The Ruskin Society exists to bring together people who are interested in the life and work of John Ruskin and to promote understanding of Ruskin and his legacy. John Ruskin was one of the most important art critics and social thinkers of the nineteenth century. His ideas inspired William Morris and the Arts and Crafts movement and had profound political implications regarding the effect of industrialisation and free markets on the ability of people to live fulfilling and meaningful lives

At the Ruskin Society Annual General Meeting, held to coincide with the celebration of the 202nd anniversary of Ruskin’s birth, the Society’s Chair, Professor Francis O’Gorman, said:

“What is special for us [about the Heritage Crafts Association], apart from the obvious Ruskinian activity of preserving endangered crafts, is that the HCA set up a COVID-19 fund earlier in the pandemic offering small, but possibly extremely valuable, grants to sole traders and small businesses to help their activities become sustainable during the pandemic, which of course has gone on far, far longer than we anticipated. Thank you from the Ruskin Society, and our thanks and prize under these exceptional circumstances go your Association.”

Heritage Crafts Association Operations Director Daniel Carpenter, who was presented with the award, said:

“We would be honoured and delighted to be receiving this award in any circumstances, but there are two reasons that make this particularly special. Firstly, because it has been given in recognition of the work we have been doing to support heritage craftspeople during this difficult pandemic year. Secondly, because it’s in the name of John Ruskin, whose thinking on the importance of meaningful work and his influence on the Arts and Crafts Movement lives on today, and we ponder how more difficult it might be to resist what often seem like overwhelming forces of consumer capitalism and the erasure of craftsmanship, were it not for his legacy.”

TJohn Ruskinhis year many of these skills, and the craftspeople who embody them, have been pushed to the brink, and the future of many of the at-risk crafts featured on our HCA Red List of Endangered Crafts have become even more precarious. In response to this we have been proactive, in increasing our support through hardship grants and our Endangered Crafts Fund, offering the inaugural President’s Award for Endangered Crafts set up by HCA President HRH The Prince of Wales, and reaching out to our members through online events and peer-support networks, accelerating our programme of work thanks to the dedicated efforts of our fantastic staff and Trustee teams, and with the support of the Dulverton Trust, the Swire Trust, the Garfield Weston Foundation, the Pilgrim Trust, the Radcliffe Trust, Allchurches Trust and the Marsh Christian Trust.

The presentation was followed by a fantastic talk by Dr Rachel Dickinson entitled ‘Ruskinian Wealth Today: living well in the wake of COVID-19’.

www.theruskinsociety.com

Winners of the 2020 Heritage Crafts Awards

Sheffield scissor makers Ernest Wright have won the inaugural President’s Award for Endangered Crafts in this year’s Heritage Crafts Awards. The prestigious award, and £3,000 bursary, was initiated by Heritage Crafts Association (HCA) President HRH The Prince of Wales.

The President’s Award was one of five awards presented by Sir John Hayes at the HCA’s Awards Ceremony held on Wednesday 7 October. The event was held online instead of the planned Winners’ Reception due to take place at the Houses of Parliament, which was inevitably curtailed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Paul Jacobs with master putter-togetherers Cliff Denton and Eric Stones of Ernest Wright scissor makers. Photo by Carl Whitham.

Paul Jacobs with master putter-togetherers Cliff Denton and Eric Stones of Ernest Wright scissor makers. Photo by Carl Whitham.

Ernest Wright was founded in 1902 and reflects everything Sheffield has become famous for – highly skilled craftspeople making supreme quality products. Following a tragedy in 2018, the company went into receivership and the critically endangered craft of scissor making was on the verge of disappearing from Sheffield. Paul Jacobs and Jan Bart Fanoy took action and bought the company, re-hired the remaining master putter-togetherers, Cliff Denton and Eric Stones, and took on several putters in training. The factory is now back in action with 12 scissor patterns currently in production. They plan to use the prize to repair machinery so that putter-in-training can have more productive time learning the craft from Cliff and Eric.

The four other awards were presented with the generous support of the Marsh Christian Trust, who have supported these awards since 2012.

The HCA/Marsh Trainer of the Year award went to Achilles Khorassandjian, shoe making tutor at Capel Manor College in Enfield, Middlesex. Achilles, known as Ash, has worked in the shoemaking industry for 57 years, and still designs and makes shoes from his home studio as well as supporting the next generation of UK shoemakers with his knowledge and skills.

The inaugural HCA/Marsh Trainee of the Year award went jointly to Richard Platt and Sam Cooper, chairmaking apprentices to Lawrence Neal at Marchmont House in Berwickshire. Richard and Sam are currently in the process of opening a rush seated chair workshop, the first of its kind since 1958. They use skills and techniques passed down from Phillip Clissett, Ernest Gimson, Edward Gardiner and Neville Neal. Without them taking up the craft, with support from Hugo Burge at Marchmont, one of Britain’s proudest craft traditions would have been lost.

The HCA/Marsh Volunteer of the Year award went to John Savings, from Appleton in Oxfordshire, hedgelayer and volunteer at the National Hedgelaying Society. John excels at promoting and encouraging others to take part in the traditional craft of hedgelaying. John lays in the South of England style but can put his hand to any style, showing young and old how to make a perfect hedge.

The HCA/Marsh ‘Made in Britain’ Award went to Two Rivers Paper. Established at Pitt Mill on Exmoor in 1987, Two Rivers is now the only manufacturer of traditional handmade, artists’ quality rag paper in the UK and one of only a handful of similar businesses in Europe. Their watercolour paper has an international reputation for excellence. Owner Jim Patterson has recently trained apprentice Zoe and plans to relocate the company to the historic papermaking town of Watchet.

 

Watch the ceremony

Watch the recording of the Awards ceremony on YouTube

 

Finalists

The finalists were as follows:

President’s Award for Endangered Crafts (£3,000): (more details)

  • Paul Jacobs – Ernest Wright scissor makers, Sheffield
  • Jim Patterson – Two Rivers Paper, Somerset
  • Helen Johannessen – industrial ceramics practitioner, London

HCA Marsh Trainer of the Year (£1,000)

  • Achilles Khorassandjian – shoe maker, Middlesex
  • Jim Patterson – paper maker, Somerset
  • Nigel Turton – thatcher, Dorset

HCA Marsh Trainee of the Year (£1,000)

  • Manuel Aragon Gimeno – guitar maker, Nottinghamshire
  • Richard Platt and Sam Cooper – chair makers, Berwickshire
  • Yasmin St Pierre – lapidarist, London

HCA Marsh Volunteer of the Year (£1,000)

  • Ann Day – The Lace Guild, Surrey
  • John Savings – The National Hedgelaying Society, Oxfordshire
  • Young Quilters Fundraising Team – The Quilters’ Guild of Great Britain

HCA Marsh Made in Britain Award (£1,000)

  • Jacqueline Cullen – Whitby jet worker, London
  • Method Studio – furniture makers, West Lothian
  • Two Rivers Paper – paper makers, Somerset

 

 

President’s Award for Endangered Crafts finalists announced

Paul Jacobs with master putter-togetherers Cliff Denton and Eric Stones of Ernest Wright scissor makers. Photo by Carl Whitham.

Paul Jacobs with master putter-togetherers Cliff Denton and Eric Stones of Ernest Wright scissor makers. Photo by Carl Whitham.

A scissor maker, a paper maker and an industrial ceramics practitioner have been selected as the three finalists from a shortlist of eight, as part of the inaugural President’s Award for Endangered Crafts, established by HRH The Prince of Wales, President of the Heritage Crafts Association.

A judging panel featuring Patrick Grant (Great British Sewing Bee / Norton & Sons / Community Clothing), Mark Hedges (Country Life), Kate Hobhouse (Fortnum & Mason), Simon Sadinsky (Prince’s Foundation) and Patricia Lovett MBE (Heritage Crafts Association) made the final selection from a strong field of applicants that not only testified to the excellence of British craftsmanship but also provided a snapshot of the precarious state of endangered craft skills in the UK today.

Jim Patterson and apprentice Zoe Collis of Two Rivers Paper. Photo by Sarah Ward.

Jim Patterson and apprentice Zoe Collis of Two Rivers Paper. Photo by Sarah Ward.

The Heritage Crafts Association published the latest edition of its groundbreaking HCA Red List of Endangered Crafts last year, which revealed that there are 107 endangered crafts in the UK. Included were the eight crafts featured in the shortlist: scissor making, commercial handmade paper making, industrial pottery skills, oak swill basket making, wheelwrighting, kishie basket making, sail making and neon sign making.

The three finalists are:

  • Paul Jacobs – Ernest Wright scissor makers, Sheffield
  • Jim Patterson – Two Rivers Paper, Somerset
  • Helen Johannessen – industrial ceramics practitioner, London
Helen Johannessen

Helen Johannessen

The other five shortlisted candidates were:

  • Phill Gregson – wheelwright, Lancashire
  • James Hartley – Ratsey & Lapthorn sail makers, Isle of Wight
  • Lorna Singleton – oak swill basket maker, Cumbria
  • Lois Walpole – kishie basket maker, Shetland Islands
  • Richard Wheater – neon sign maker, West Yorkshire

The three finalists’ applications will now be presented to HRH The Prince of Wales for his selection, with the winner to be honoured at a special reception at Dumfries House, home of The Prince’s Foundation, as well as at a prestigious winners’ reception at the Houses of Parliament. The winner will also receive £3,000 to help ensure that their craft skills are passed on to the next generation.

HCA Chair Patricia Lovett said:

“We received a large number of very high-quality entries for this award, so being shortlisted was a huge achievement. The fact that we are blessed to have such highly skilled craftspeople in the UK should not allow us to forget the fact that, without more people taking up these crafts and the infrastructure and funding to support them, these skills could soon be consigned to history, in what would be a terrible loss to British cultural life.”

Judge Patrick Grant said:

“It was a joy to judge… I find myself wanting to do all of these things!”

 

Winners of the 2019 Heritage Crafts Awards

Winners of the 2019 Heritage Crafts Awards

Handmade paper maker James Patterson has been named Maker of the Year in this year’s Heritage Crafts Awards.

Maker of the Year was one of six awards presented at the Heritage Crafts Association’s (HCA) annual conference at Cecil Sharp House, London on 9th March.

James is the owner and operator of Somerset-based Two Rivers Paper, which manufactures handmade paper for artists, printers and designers. Based in a 400 year old water mill, it is the only commercial business of its kind in the UK and one of only a handful in Europe. James won the award in recognition of the quality of his work, for his role in developing the skills of others, both within his own business and beyond, and for the innovations which are enabling him to keep the craft alive.

Simon Brock, winner of the Endangered Craft Award, with Nick Carter, Marsh Christian Trust.

Clog maker Simon Brock from Sheffield won the HCA/Marsh Endangered Craft Award. This award, set up with the support of the Marsh Christian Trust, recognises a practitioner of one of the crafts listed in the ‘critically endangered’ or ‘endangered’ categories of the HCA Red List of Endangered Crafts. Simon makes bespoke clogs, primarily for clog step dancers and Morris dancers. He will use his award to study with master clog maker Jeremy Atkinson, learning how to carve clog soles entirely by hand using traditional clog knives. Simon also won the HCA/Arts Society Heritage Crafts bursary which will enable him to extend his studies with Jeremy.

Tony Kindell of Aldershaw Handmade Tiles Ltd, winner of the ‘Made in Britain’ Award, with Nick Carter, Marsh Christian Trust.

Winner of the HCA/Marsh ‘Made in Britain’ Award is Aldershaw Handmade Tiles Ltd. The Sussex-based company employs traditional hand making methods using wooden moulds and 150-million-year-old local Wadhurst clay. The company is one of only a few still making sanded, rubbed or glazed mathematical tiles, used since the 1700s as a method of weatherproofing timber buildings in Kent, Sussex, Surrey, Hampshire and Northamptonshire.  Aldershaw’s terracotta tiles can be found in floors and roofs all over the country: on The Queen’s House at The Tower of London, Harmondsworth Medieval Barn, St James Church Piccadilly, the Real Tennis Court at Hampton Court together with the National Trust Village West Wycombe, English Heritage properties and many private estates.

 Trainer of the Year Neill Mapes with Nick Carter, Marsh Christian Trust.

HCA/Marsh Trainer of the Year is Neill Mapes of the Small Woods Association (SWA). In his role first as a volunteer and then as SWA’s Heritage Crafts Officer, Neill has trained and mentored many thousands of enthusiasts, volunteers, SWA members and the general public in a wide range of crafts, including rake making, bowl turning, broom making, pole lathe turning, currach and coracle making. He leads the teaching of crafts skills at the Greenwood Centre in Coalbrookdale, Shropshire, and has an enthusiastic following on social media, which he uses to share his skills.

Volunteer of the Year Toni Brannon with Nick Carter, Marsh Christian Trust.

The HCA/Marsh Volunteer of the Year Award went to Toni Brannon for years of dedication to coppicing and woodland crafts, both as membership secretary of the Hampshire Coppice Group and as committee member of the National Coppice Federation since its inception in 2013. Toni won the award for her role in raising awareness of coppicing and for the contribution she has made to improving training opportunities for coppice workers and woodland craft practitioners across the UK.

During the conference, fore-edge painter Martin Frost MBE, and textile designer Kaffe Fassett MBE were awarded with certificates to mark their inclusion in The Queen’s Birthday and New Year’s Honours Lists. Both were nominated for their awards by the Heritage Crafts Association.

Speakers at the sell-out conference included Jay Blades from BBC2’s The Repair Shop, Woman’s Hour Craft Prize finalist Celia Pym, and Mike Jenn, founder of Men’s Sheds.

The Heritage Crafts Awards celebrate and highlight the traditional living crafts made in the UK that contribute to our national heritage. Applications for the next round of awards and bursaries open on 1 September. For more details, visit http://awards.heritagecrafts.org.uk/ 

 

2019 Heritage Crafts Awards finalists

Maker of the Year:  Louise Anderson;   James Patterson;  Charlie Trevor

Endangered Craft Award:  Teresa Bailey;  Simon Brock;  Tuesday Riddell

Made in Britain:  Aldershaw Handmade Tiles Ltd;  Peter Faulkner Coracles;  Laura’s Loom;  Two Rivers Paper

Trainer of the YearSue Macniven;  Neill Mapes;  Denise Stirrup

Volunteer of the Year:  Toni Brannon

HCA/Arts Society Bursary:  Heather Berry;  Simon Brock;  Dave Evers