The Worshipful Company of Turners

Supporting the Craft, City and Charity for over four hundred years

Young Turners Training & Development Programme

By Ron Caddy Co-ordinator


The first ‘Official’ Young Turners Training days (referred by some as ‘Youth Training’) was held in the workshop of Stuart Mortimer in August 2006. Since then Training days have been held in various locations throughout the UK, The latest was held on the 22nd February 2020 at the workshop of Les Thorne (‘No Turning Back’) In Alresford Hampshire The age range originally was 14-18 years but now has been widened to 12-21 years. The Association of Woodturners of Great Britain (AWGB) gives each Young Turner free membership of the Association until they are 21. The Association also covers the events with Insurance and pays for the incidental expenses of the training day such as materials, drinks, workshop or hall hire and the tutors travelling costs. The Worshipful Company of Turners makes a grant to the Tutors to cover some of the time that they give to assist the Young Turners.

For the latest Training Day 6 Young Turners attended (on this occasion all boys) coming from Hampshire Berkshire and Buckinghamshire. Each student had attended a previous course, this was a deliberate decision as we wished to see how each student had progressed. The young person/ tutor ration is 1 Tutor to 2 Young Turners. The Tutors for this day were Les Thorne, Mick Hanbury and Ron Caddy.

The students were requested to arrive at 9.00am, being keen they all arrived earlier!! The day started with a time informing them of the Health & Safety guidelines for the day. They were then each issued with a programme of how the day would operate, being split into 3 , 1.1/2 hour sessions so that they would spend some time with each of the Tutors who would guide them in different aspects of the Woodturning Craft.

With Les Thorne they learnt about the design and making of a Candlestick in Ash, with Mick Hanbury a Platter with a beautifully decorated rim again in Ash. Ron Caddy guided them in Pen Turning/Making using different materials, (a Ballpoint Pen in Acrylic and a Fountain Pen In Wood). The pen kits and the required bushings were supplied free of charge by Dan Smith of Taylors Mirfield and Phil Dance of Beaufort Ink.

A number of ‘dignitaries’ visited throughout the day, The Master of the Worshipful Company of Turners (Andrew Sindall) arrived at the commencement of the day and stayed until the end, Other Company representatives were Mellissa Scott (the next Master), Peter Gibson and Peter Ellis Both Past Masters and Stuart Mortimer, Master in Turning who originated the Young Turners Programme.

Also, representing the AWGB was Paul Hannaby the Chairman of the Association.

The day concluded with a speech by the Master of the Company who then presented each of the students with a certificate signed by the Tutors.

Other Young Turners Training & Development Days are planned for this year and enquiries should be directed to Ron Caddy who acts as the co-ordinator for the events.

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