This is a small invitation event, a gathering of friends and makers during the winter months to share craft and make interesting things.
Apply to join ‘The Dwarves of Zennor’ for more information.
GLADIUS MAKING COURSE
This annual event is open to the public and is run in the time-bubble of ‘Butser Ancient Farm’ a place worth seeing in its own right.
Have you or your loved one ever hankered after making a sword? This is your opportunity to take part in a formal course run over two weekends in the summer, with a couple of weeks in between.
Rod will instruct you in the history and making of an iconic Roman Gladius. Over the four days you will forge your own blade incorporating both mistakes and inspiration, and take home a piece which truly represents your personality, which you can keep for life.
We forge in steel, cast bronze, silver or copper and fabricate hilts from wood, leather, horn and bone.
For more information, contact Butser Ancient Farm or enquire directly via the contact page.
Rod is able to accommodate a limited number of private students by arrangement only. This time is intended for those who want to have personal, practical tuition in blade making, forging, mould making, casting, hilt finishing or any aspect of the craft.
To discuss your requirements and for more information, make contact directly via the contact page.
This is a new event, currently being planned. It intends to bring together many aspects of Saxon and Viking life including metal work in an enjoyable social setting, to be held at the Saxon Hall at Butser Ancient Farm.
For more information, enquire directly via the contact page.
Swordfest is a ten-day invitation event held annually on the hills above Zennor, Cornwall. It is a meeting of makers from all over the world, to make amazing things and socialise in an off-grid location. A constantly running forge and furnace enables the metal heads to get their fix but ancient craftwork is much more extensive than that. There is opportunity to work in wood, bone, glass, jewellery and a myriad of ancient textile techniques.
If you are interested in making things in period, apply to join ‘The Dwarves of Zennor’ for more information.
VICTORIAN HOUSE OF ARTS & CRAFTS
This new four-part series from Lion Television Scotland for BBC Arts will air on BBC Two in early 2019 and transport six modern-day craftspeople back in time to live and experience first-hand the ideas and practices of Arts and Crafts visionaries William Morris, John Ruskin and Gertrude Jekyll.
Formed in protest against the dehumanisation of workers and mass-produced goods, these pioneers felt a return to nature, and taking a pride in handcrafted goods would enhance their lives and create a better society. But will it work today and what, if anything, can the craftspeople take from the experience that might enrich their lives in the modern world?
Cut off from 21st century life, the group of six artisans will be transported back into a remote Victorian Arts & Crafts bubble where they must lovingly breathe life back into an original Arts and Crafts property.
Forming a community and living and working collectively, they must decorate and furnish four key rooms, one per episode, making everything from scratch, inspired by nature and in keeping with the rules of the movement.
They’ll make hand-printed wallpaper, bespoke craft furniture, furnishings and ceramics using archives and original source material related to the home and community, transforming it into a spectacular Arts and Crafts showcase.
Anita Rani says: “It’s a joy to present The Victorian House Of Arts And Crafts. Our six crafters embody the ethos of William Morris and the movement. I’m looking forward to seeing the things they are able to create in just a week. When an object has been created so expertly and with passion it can be truly moving. It’s also going to be great fun to dress as a Victorian!”
Keith Brymer-Jones says: “Being part of the presenting team on The Victorian House Of Arts And Crafts programme is truly inspirational. The crafters living and working together in the house and growing as a group really reflects what the Arts and Crafts movement was all about.”
Patch Rogers says: “The programme is a fantastic opportunity to help tell the story of what inspired the designers and artisans of the Arts and Crafts period, and most importantly to encourage a new generation to design and make beautiful and purposeful objects.”
Patrick Holland, Channel Controller, BBC Two says: "I loved this idea because it does two things that are BBC Two at its best - revelling in the joy of making things and exploring our rich, shared past."
Emma Cahusac, Commissioner, BBC Arts, says: “I am thrilled to bring The Victorian House of Arts and Crafts to BBC Two. The series will offer viewers a unique and immersive journey into the past whilst sharing the struggles and triumphs of our six gifted artisans in the house. I really hope people will be inspired to try to find the time to incorporate arts and crafts into their own busy lives.”
The Victorian House of Arts and Crafts for BBC Two was commissioned by Emma Cahusac. Executive Producers for Lion Television Scotland are Lisa Hazlehurst and Nick Catliff. The Series Editor for Lion is Jeremy Daldry.
CUTLASSES ON THE BEACH
St Ives, famous for its Victorian artist’s community and is the venue for the annual St Ives Art Festival in September.
This year Rod teams up with local film world legend Terry English, to forge ‘Cutlasses on the Beach’.
They will be loading an original Victorian barrow, nicknamed ‘to Hayle in a hand cart’ with hammers, period forge, furnace and anvils and setting up on the beach to demonstrate their craft to onlookers. Expect pirate cutlasses, outrageous armour, a few skulls and the odd tot of rum.
Rod will set up on the beach next to Porthminster Gallery where there will be the opportunity to see an exhibition of swords, armour and a new sculpture.
For more information, contact St Ives Arts Festival, Portminster Gallery or enquire directly via the contact page.
Beltane at Butser Ancient Farm, is a magnificent annual event. An ancient holiday to celebrate renewal and the beginning of summer. The event, which draws thousands each year, is a mixture of pagan festival and the chance to see ancient crafts and entertainment.
Every year Rod and a band of metal workers put on a demonstration event. Come and see swords and sparks. There is nothing like red hot metal forged at night in the flickering light from a flaming fifty-foot high wicker man.
For more information and to obtain tickets, visit