Enrolling now for our 40 week Course and  our 3 to 6 month Bespoke Programmes.

Enrolling now for our One Week Introduction to Fine Furniture Making course - 21st to 25th August 2017.
Book now on 01984 667555.
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Spring 2017

Tel: +44 (0)
1984 667555
This year, Williams and Cleal Ltd celebrate 27 years as a successful furniture business, and 10 years as a well respected furniture school.
(Pictured - Justin Williams and Jane Cleal in the early days of their career in furniture making.)
10 Years on! Williams and Cleal Furniture School.

Back in 2007, Jane Cleal and Justin Williams announced the launch of their long awaited furniture school - the Williams and Cleal Furniture School.

At that point, they had been running their own successful furniture business for 17 years. They not only had 20 years of experience as talented designer makers - but Jane bought to the school, a proven track record as a qualified higher education lecturer in furniture making and her experience of being apprenticed under Alan Peters OBE.

Joining them from the outset, was Lead Workshop Tutor, James Ralph. James worked previously as a maker for internationally renowned John Makepeace OBE for 10 years and was responsible for making a number of his award winning pieces of iconic furniture - and also for passing on his own skills to apprentices.

The school is now in it's tenth year and continues to earn a reputation of excellence for the high level teaching delivered by the same experienced team of master craftsman and designers - Jane Cleal, Justin Williams and James Ralph.

Since the school took on our first student on the 10th September 2007, we have maintained an exceptionally high standard of teaching; and shared our passion for furniture, quality craftsmanship and beautiful functional design in tutoring the next generation of fine furniture makers. 

We are still in contact with many of our past students, many of them now have their own successful furniture businesses, or have chosen to work as makers for companies producing high end bespoke furniture commissions. 

We need no excuse to celebrate with cake, so we'll be breaking out the 10 year birthday cake this September!

If you are interested in a career change to furniture making, or would like to know more about our courses - you would be most welcome to call for an informal chat -  or to arrange to come and visit the school.

Call Kate or Jane on 01984 667555 or visit the courses section of our website here.
School Visits to Artichoke Ltd and Vastern's Timber Co Ltd.
At Williams and Cleal, we enrich our syllabus by offsite visits to regional bespoke furniture makers, timber merchants and design companies.

The purpose of these visits is to help students better experience the industry they are entering; to hear of first hand  of developments, trends and new technique/ machinery being used in bespoke furniture design and production.

On Tuesday 7th March, by kind invitation of Bruce Hodgson and John Hampton of Artichoke Ltd (http://www.artichoke-ltd.com/) our students visited the Artichoke workshop to experience how  these leading designer/makers of bespoke furniture, kitchens and architectural joinery work.

The visit to Artichoke was very inspirational for all of our students and opened their eyes to opportunities, processes and design technologies at the forefront of the high end bespoke furniture industry. 
On Thursday 9th March, the school visited Vastern's Timber Company (https://www.vastern.co.uk/), located near Wootten Bassett. Here, Tom Barnes of Vastern's Timber, toured our students through the timber yard and demonstrated techniques on timber cutting, drying and storing processes -  and good timber selection. Again, the visit was very useful and informative for the students and proves to be a great hit each year with new intakes of students.
Our Steambending Video Clip
(Click on image to view)
Feedback on our one week course -  February 17.
Seven students joined us for a week. Here are their thoughts on the course:

"Taking the one week course has made me realise that furniture making isn't just a pipe dream, it really is achievable!" Sophia

"The 1 week course is a very good taster. It is very well structured... (and) well presented by someone who has a natural ability to teach. Jim has an intuitive understanding of woodwork. It was very good to have someone who could engage, at all levels, with people of  differing knowledge" Andrew
Short Courses
Summer One Week Course
£700 (inc VAT)
Monday 21st August to Friday 25th August 2017.
Three places remaining
Book soon to avoid disappointment!

Call 01984 667555
W & C in the news.......
Furniture and Cabinetmaking Magazine - April Edition
'Masters in the making: Behind the scenes at Williams and Cleal'
We are thrilled that F & C Magazine have featured a gallery spread of the work of Williams and Cleal Students in April's edition (On sale from 16th March).

Well done to Alistair Buchan, Jessica Fairley, Damian Robinson, Tom Moy, Charles Byron, Tom Jarrold and Ruth Bowers whose incredible work features in the article.

You will also see Damian Robinson's Hexagonal Drinks Cabinet detail as the front cover of the April edition - nice work Damian!

This editon's book pick is 'Ercol: Furniture in the Making' 
This book tells the fascinating story of Ercol, one of Britain's best loved and most successful furniture companies. 
Steam Bending Demonstrations

Last week, our tutor Justin Williams demonstrated the process of steam bending to our students Alberto, Chris, Laura, Jan, Finn, James, Wilma, Shane and Marguerite.

Justin steamed several different types of wood in a long steam box for the purpose of making them pliable. Once steamed and then fastened or clamped into the desired position and left to dry, the wood will hold to the new shape. Steam boxes allow the wood to bend beyond it's natural breaking point, which is useful in making extreme curves with wood. 

Justin demonstrated which types of woods lend themselves best to steam bending, and which woods are not as suitable for this purpose. Each student had a role in the process, which involved everybody moving nail-bitingly quickly to get the best results! You can watch the students and the steam bending demonstration here, or see photo above. 
New Students....
We have recently welcomed Shane and Wilma to our 40 week course, and we look forward to welcoming Maurice - all the way from L.A in April!

 A great start made to the course and it's a real pleasure to have new students joining us in the workshop.
40 Week Fine Furniture Making Course
Looking for a change of career? Wanting to train in furniture making and start up your own business? Always desired developing your skills further?

Our 40 week Fine Furniture Making course has places opening up from
July 2017

If you are curious to find out more about enrolling on our courses, please feel free to call us for an informal chat, or contact us to arrange a visit to the school. 

Call 01984 667555
Student Gallery
Find out more about the work of our current students on our facebook and Instagram pages.

Click here to find out more from Facebook!

Click here to find out more from Instagram!
Copyright © 2017 Williams and Cleal Furniture Ltd, All rights reserved.

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