In-person course

Two-day woodcarving for beginners



This comprehensive two-day course is an excellent way to learn the ancient art of woodcarving, enabling you to undertake your own creations. This course is a fun and relaxed way to learn with award-winning local woodcarver William Barsley. It’s incredible what you can learn and achieve over two days! This course is aimed at the complete beginner - you really don’t need to have any experience of woodcarving at all. It’s also suitable if you’ve dabbled in carving before - we can focus on building on your existing skills. The course is carefully structured to build your confidence throughout the day and you will leave feeling that you can undertake your own carvings at home. The first day is all about introducing you to the craft and getting familiar with carving techniques. We look at methods of shallow relief carving as a quick and effective way of decoration. On the second day we take this further and explore high relief carving with the extra time allowing you to practice and hone your abilities under the guidance of the course tutor. *Group size is limited to 5 participants to ensure you feel fully supported throughout the day. You can either book as a private group of 5 or join an existing group as an individual. Minimum class size of 3. WHAT YOU WILL LEARN - How to sharpen and use carving chisels most effectively - How to draw and transfer your design onto wood - Which type of wood to carve when and why - Carving techniques to bring your work to life, with the focus on shallow and high relief carving, which enables you to decorate any surface - Tips to reduce mistakes - Different ways to protect and seal your carvings ABOUT WILLIAM BARSLEY Course tutor William Barsley has extensive woodcarving experience including working on the Houses of Parliament restoration. William was classically trained in Historic Woodcarving and Gilding at the prestigious City and Guilds of London Art School. Passionate about teaching, William enjoys nothing more than helping others to learn the beautiful art of carving. His friendly and open approach allows students to ask questions, develop their abilities and - most importantly - to enjoy the process. The course is run at William’s workshop in the heart of Dartington in Devon, with the famous Dartington Hall Estate and Cider Press just a 10-minute walk away and the beautiful town of Totnes only a 5-minute drive.

What's included in the price?

All timber and tools required on the day. A limewood blank to take home and a series of design ideas to help your practice. Cakes, tea and coffee to keep you fuelled throughout the day. Besides an open mind and plenty of enthusiasm, the only thing you need to bring is a packed lunch which, if weather permits, can be enjoyed on the green just a stone’s throw from the workshop.


2 days (10:00am to 4:30pm)

Cancellation policy

Easy - Cancellation and a full refund can be obtained up to 2 weeks before the course starts. Start dates may be amended on request.



William Barsley

with Craft Courses since 2021

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Unit 4, Webbers Yard Industrial Estate, Dartington, TOTNES, Devon, TQ9 6JY

Suitable for

  • Adults
  • Seniors
  • Teenagers
  • Romantic
  • Stag dos
  • UK Holiday
  • Intermediate level
  • Christmas
  • Hen dos
  • Easter
  • Corporate days out & team building
  • Public transport
  • Father's Day
  • School holiday workshops & activities
  • Engagement, birthdays & anniversaries
  • Mother's Day
  • Suitable for beginners
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