I recently spent a morning up at the workshop to shoot a series of promotional stills for this establishing business. After many years of training as a furniture restorer with Peter Hall, Ted has now set up his own small workshop just outside Kendal specialising in bespoke furniture creation and restoration.
Ted is a collector of beautiful things, favouring craftsmanship and longevity over convenient consumption. Many of the hand tools he uses day to day have been given to him or collected, worn and polished by generation of use before finding their way to him. This strong sense of tradition is inherent in Ted’s work and character.
After completing his 5 years of training as a restorer Ted embarked on a 12 month trip as a Journeyman. This tradition dates back to the early 12th century and would see newly qualified tradesman travelling countrywide exchanging labour for food and board. The Journeyman could be distinguished by the gold ring in one ear (to pay for their funeral should it be needed), some rather jazzy clothes and a twisted wooden walking stick. There are still a few wandering Europe today, keep your eyes peeled!
Ted’s time as a Journeyman was tough. Times have changed and there aren’t so many doors open to wandering tradesman, but it took him to all four corners of the country and on to the Scilly Isles before he headed back to the Lake District to set up his workshop. Here he is with Swift – employee of the month…….every month!