Pole-lathe turning taster days: spindle turning



"Bodging" aka pole lathe turning has seen a considerable revival over the past few years. If you've ever seen the bodger at the local country show, with the treadle bouncing up and down, shavings flying, revealing the finished item, maybe you would like to have a go yourself... This is an opportunity to spend a full day turning green wood on a pole lathe; it's absorbing fun, and the academics tell us it's highly therapeutic!

The venue for these sessions is in the workshop shelter in the woods next to May Hill scout hut and campsite. The workshop is equipped with plenty of shave horses and pole lathes to enable learners to make a wide range of beautiful and functional items. Possible projects include a rolling pin, a rounders bat, a spinning top or a mallet; or maybe you have your own ideas... Certainly one finished item, maybe two or more are achievable in the day.

The source of the materials is all around – May Hill woodlands comprises 100s of acres of ancient woodland, managed in a sensitive and sustainable way. Native hardwoods are harvested within the estate, to be crafted into a range of items, using traditional methods and simple hand tools.

Camping is available on site, please enquire.

Enjoy this ancient and absorbing craft, coached by an experienced artisan tutor, and take the fruits of your labour home with you at the end of the day!

Cancellation and a full refund can be obtained up to 8 weeks before the course starts. Start dates may be amended on request.

What's included in the price?

What's included in the price?

All materials, tuition and use of tools are included. Due to Covid restrictions, learners are asked to bring their own food and cup for drinks this year. There will be kettle fire with tea, coffee and herb teas provided.

We are currently operating smaller groups to allow for social distancing.


Maurice Clother at Touch Wood


May Hill Scout Hut
up the lane to the left of May Hill Village Hall
May Hill
GL17 0NL

Suitable for

  • Accommodation offered
  • Adults
  • Corporate days out & team building
  • Engagement, birthdays & anniversaries
  • Hen dos
  • Intermediate level
  • Learning difficulties (SEN)
  • Parking provided
  • Residential
  • Romantic
  • School holiday workshops & activities
  • Seniors
  • Stag dos
  • Suitable for beginners
  • Teenagers
  • UK Holiday


1 day (10:00am to 4:00pm)

Silver Badge
What does this mean?

This craft course provider has been awarded Silver status for receiving 5 or more 5 star ratings from previous students.

The Students' Choice award ensures that course providers get recognised for their efforts in the teaching and practice of UK craft.

They also allow tutors to gain valuable feedback on their courses and for new students to find the course that's right for them.

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In-person course
Richard Wainwright - - #24039

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In-person course
Rhodri Jenkins - - #14512

A good course in a lovely National Trust parkland setting. Its only a taster course so just one day to see if you like it and want to take it further. I loved it so I will be making my own lathe and learning the craft.

In-person course
Laura Ghent - - #14505

Had a fantastic day at Lower Brockhampton Estate on the Pole Lathe Turning. Maurice was very knowledgeable and excellent at teaching us the basics of wood turning (also very patient with my poor attempts at times!). We were taught what to do and which tools were used for what and were then free to explore and get a feel for using the lathe, but help was readily available from Maurice if we needed it. We were free to make whatever objects we chose. Would thoroughly recommend the course and will definitely be doing this again in the near future!

In-person course
Sean Radtke - - #8966

The day was great, with an instructor who obviously thoroughly enjoyed woodworking, and sharing his enjoyment with others. I am very happy with the items I created. Thank you, Maurice

In-person course
Phil Argyle - - #8936

I recently went on the pole lathe turning workshop at Brockhampton and found the entire day totally absorbing. We created 2 tools from the raw cleaved wood, and Maurice skillfully guided us throughout the process. It was a great day and thoroughly enjoyable. I have impressed many friends already with the implements created on the day!

In-person course
Ken Davies - - #7495

Very enjoyable day, well run by the instructor, very pleased with the end results

In-person course
Daniel Cracknell - - #7481

I went on this course recently and found it absolutely amazing, the instructor was brilliant and the finished product is more than i could ever have hoped for and everyone ive shown has been amazed!

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