I like to attend woodworking schools. From my very first hands-on classes at the Woodcraft store in Bloomington, Mn., I’ve been hooked on learning from the “masters.”
Paul Sellers is one of those masters. You might remember, he taught a hand tools foundational course that I took a few years ago. And so I was excited to hear that he has founded a new woodworking school in his native England. The New Legacy School of Woodworking is much like the school I attended near Waco, TX at the Homestead Heritage Craft Village. But with a twist. It’s housed in a castle — Penrhyn Castle in North Wales. Penrhyn is one of the many castles being preserved and maintained by the National Trust, with whom Paul has been working for the last year or so.
Paul says that the availability of some really good furniture from Asia has continued to make it difficult to earn a living as a woodworker. But he hopes that schools like his will fill the void left by the decline of apprenticeship programs like the one that helped start his career over 40 years ago in his native England. During his apprenticeship, Paul learned about the proper use of hand tools, still an important part of the trade in England even in the ’60s. That’s the focus of New Legacy and I wish him well.