The Edward Barnsley Workshop – Friday 15th May 2015

Situated at Froxfield, just outside Petersfield, this workshop making high quality furniture, has its roots in the Arts and Crafts. The size of the workshop and access to the workshop make it preferable for this to be a self-drive visit. Booking March and April

This is a short tour of a small but high quality furniture making workshop dating back to 1923. Our visit to the workshop will give us an opportunity to see the highest craft skills in action as well as finished work. Edward Barnsley CBE (1900-1987) was one of the most important British furniture makers of the C20th. He developed the Arts and Crafts traditions established in the Cotswolds by his father Sidney in the late C19th. Edward created over seven thousand pieces of well-made furniture that he hoped would be pleasing to the eye and ‘give real joy to use’. James Ryan, who is now the manager of the workshop, will give us a short tour around it. Originally a Barnsley apprentice, he now designs all the furniture. Most of it is designed to fulfil a particular brief and to work in a specific space. Important commissions include the oak boards for the Domesday Book and pieces for the Palace of Westminster. A few pieces are made to display in the showroom , next door to the workshop. There are three experienced craftsmen and six apprentices in the workshop team.The Edward Barnsley Educational Trust has supported the training of workshop apprentices since 1980. Each September the Trust engages two or three apprentices. The size of the workshop means that our visit will be limited to a maximum of 40 people. One group of 20 will visit in the morning and one after lunch, for which we will meet in a local pub. We will drive our own cars but will try to make sure lifts are available for those without cars.