I first started woodturning after getting diabetes and being out of work in 1985, the department of employment then sent me on a disability training scheme. Having got there, I was taken round the different departments, one of which was a woodwork shop. I had not been interested in woodwork, but had been working in engineering and with machinery in the past. I think it was my interest in both that drew me to the lathe standing in the corner.
I was down there nearly every day after that making things and learning for myself for about eight weeks. After leaving there having got a job, I saved and bought my own lathe.
I then joined the Association of Woodturners of Great Britain and a club in Kent where we lived. I played with the lathe every night and weekends, getting told off for being late for bed, practicing and making lots of different things and showing them at classic car shows where I took my classic car. Then one day my work was complimented on, by a member of the highly acclaimed Worshipful Company of Woodturners, we became good friends, and still are very good friends after having a few lessons with him.
I started to turn wood as a full time job and got involved in a demonstration at a craft fair, to my supprise it went down well and word got out, I then begun doing demo’s on a regular basis.
During this time my friend the woodturner asked me if I could teach someone he knew as he didn’t have the time, as I have a teaching background in driving and engineering, I accepted.
After enjoying this I continued with demonstrating and teaching. I have since had the pleasure of teaching in the disability training scheme that I went on, and a 14yr old who has subsequently gone on to win two competitions.
I still teach, demonstrate, and take on commissions no job to big or to small.