Ben Willis Woodcraft crafts classes in London
Ben Willis Woodcraft crafts classes in London


Ben Willis Woodcraft

4 reviews
4 reviews

Ben Willis Woodcraft is an independent wood workshop based in Crystal Palace offering a chance to get back to nature by using green wood to make a bowl, stool or chair from scratch.

Ben makes bespoke furniture and it all starts this way - as a log, as far as is possible freshly cut from the woodland. Aside from the practical advantages of using material in this form, as previously described, an added benefit is that it sustains the ancient practice of coppicing, a sustainable method for managing woodlands in which trees are cut, allowed to regrow again for a period of time, before being harvested once more - and so on.

Ben was for a long time fascinated watching demonstrations at craft shows by skilled craftsmen and women of some of the old woodworking techniques. Eventually, Ben got around to signing up to a week-long chair-making course in Herefordshire with Mike Abbott, one of the leading recent exponents of the craft and a key figure in the revival of traditional woodworking techniques. Predictably, he was hooked, and jumped on the chance of returning to Mike's workshop in the woods the following year to work as his assistant for a season.

This gave Ben chance to learn the craft in depth from someone with a huge amount of knowledge. Since then, Ben has been honing the skills he learnt from Mike learning more from others and developing his own ideas and approaches to the craft.

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9 Feb
I had a blast on Ben's course; I was a complete newbie to woodturning but he took the time to explain the key principles of how to work with green wood as well as a thorough look through the tools and equipment. We had plenty of time to mess around with all the implements to really get a lot pf practical experience and because the classes are kept small we had much one to one time with Ben who could watch us and point out useful tips. The relaxed and happy class definitely increased my interest to pick up more skills and return to the workshop, and Ben is a credit to his craft with an infectious attitude to green woodworking. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend this class to anyone with a mind to learning about this wonderful ancient skill.
25 Jan
This is the second course I have been on run by Ben and I'm sure it won't be the last. The courses are small groups so there's lots of opportunity to get individual help during each session. Ben is a great teacher, very knowledgeable, patient and explains things well. Green wood working is very relaxing, enjoyable and addictive, I'd highly recommend this class!
27 Mar
I booked this for my husband as a gift and he has such a nice time. He's done some woodworking before but found the techniques in this class quite special, using no machine tools. The result is a lovely stool which we're very excited to use!
13 Jun
My partner and son really had the most amazing time highly recommended!