Artist Blacksmith Ian Lowe writes:
‘The word ‘Forge’ has several English usages: the name of the entire building; “The Forge”, the place where the Blacksmith heats steel; “a Forge” and the process of shaping the steel itself; “to forge”, or “forging”.
Few arts have helped shape the world around us more than that of the humble Blacksmith. So important was the art once considered that it stood as ‘King of the trades’. Amongst all artisans, the Blacksmith alone was completely self-sufficient; he made his own material, his own tools…and everyone else’s tools too. Its a shame that today there are fewer than a thousand registered Blacksmiths in the U.K.
The Forge produces traditionally hand-forged and worked items in several metals for an incredible variety of purposes, from demonstration pieces for visiting school parties to sculptural pieces for exhibition.
We are a fully working Forge in every sense and are happy to take on commissioned work from both the public and private sector. Education is a vital part of our work: we offer anyone interested a chance to study with us via classes or ‘have a go’ sessions. We aim to run these two-hour sessions weekly for free. We are always available for viewing whenever on site and welcome enquiries from visitors – when a suitable moment arises.
The Forge is run by our resident Artist Blacksmith Ian Lowe along with Lead Forge Hand Richard Pace DCM. Ian has over seven years’ traditional metalworking experience, working around the world with many Master Blacksmiths. Years in Europe (France, Holland, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Norway and Finland), over two years in Australia, and, most recently, a stint across America, he brings a unique background to the craft.
Richard is a highly-decorated former soldier whose interest in Blacksmithing was first sparked after meeting Ian on the Farm as a volunteer. Subsequently committing himself to learning the skills, Richard has become a valuable member of the Forge team with a very wide skill set in many disciplines.’