"I had a fantastic two days at the forge. Alex is really helpful and passionate about his craft, and helpful and pleasant company. On the last day I was running very late completing my piece, but he was perfectly happy to wait until I had finished quietly offering advice until I had finished. I cannot recommend him enough."
"An absolutely first class course. Alex has an excellent knowledge of the skills and provides brilliant explanation as to the processes and the theory.
I fully intend to go back and do a bit more as the experiences and the skills acquired are priceless. The best birthday present I have ever had and I urge anyone considering the- day course to have a go at it."
"To celebrate our 8th year wedding anniversary I booked my husband and I a 1 day course at Chalk Pit forge which is set in a beautiful historic work shop museum full of interesting buildings.Alex was really welcoming and made us feel very relaxed and ready to learn the basic skills of black smithing. He shared a lot of his designs and pictures of previous work to inspire us on what we wanted to achieve. We decide on a dragon shaped door knocker and Alex showed us the various techniques and made a demonstration on how to heat and work the metal into shape. We were delighted with the results and we managed to learn a lot throughout the day. Alex is an amazing teacher, he explained every step very clearly and easily to understand. The day was so enjoyable and the fact that we managed to make something special to remember our wedding anniversary was great. We really recommend this course and Alex as a teacher. Awsome unforgettable day."
"For my 21st birthday I wanted a gift that was a bit more interesting and sentimental rather than a materialistic handbag or similar, so I asked my parents for a blacksmith lesson. It is located in chalk put forge which is a great place to go in itself. Straight away before I had even met Alex, he was so friendly and helpful- even helping me with directions before I got there! Given I didn't know anything about black smiths or how it works, Alex explained everything really well and was very patient with all the questions I had! I was also a bit indecisive about what I wanted to make so Alex showed me lots of things that I could make and what techniques I would be learning by choosing different items to make. I made some lillies and I am so proud of them. When anyone has seen them in my garden I have received so many compliments. I am very weak in my arms but Alex helped me when my arms got a bit achy. I would really recommend having a black smith lesson with Alex; he is so friendly and easy to get on with and he is a very talented man who makes everything he does look so easy! Whether you are male or female, old or young, it is a great thing to try out or give to someone as a gift. Not only is it a great experience but they will also have something that they can keep for life afterwards!"
"This was a Christmas Present and i can only repeat what everyone else has said,had a great day and learnt so much ,Alex made this course so interesting an relaxed that the effort of swinging the hammer was a pleasure. thank you Alex"
"I attended the day with my partner and son. Alex could not have been more helpful or friendly. I was making a kinetic sculpture for my final project at college for which I obtained a distinction and Alex's help was invaluable.
The setting for the course is beautiful ,we had a taste-vin lunch included in the cost overall we all had a brilliant day .
My 20 year old son enjoyed it so much that he intends to go back and do a longer course.
I would recommend this course to any one who wanted to try something different ."
"I really enjoyed it, a great day. Alex's skill at guiding me through the process was really appreciated, it is something that a lot of teachers can not get right but you do it to perfection. Very enjoyable highly recommended."
"I had a great day making a ram's head poker - fantastic introduction to an age-old skill and a chance to try a number of different techniques. Alex was a great tutor and very patient - the process is broken down into a series of manageable stages, and whilst there is a lot to take in, I never once felt overwhelmed - he managed to pitch it to just the right level. Would definitely recommend!"
"The 5 star ratings in other reviews is well deserved. This is an excellent introduction to the art of the blacksmith in a lovely setting.
Alex is friendly and relaxed but there is little opportunity rest. I could have done with bigger biceps! :)
If you are interested in metal working, this course is thoroughly recommended."
"This was my second visit to see and work with Alex after a really enjoyable first experience, the second visit did not disappoint. I made another matching garden obelisk to match my first visit. Alex is friendly, patient, supportive and allows you to push yourself so you can get what you want out of the day. Also had the bonus of lunch being included. It's a great experience in a great place and its really enjoyable skill and material to work with."
"This was my second visit to the forge, as I had such a great day out the first time. I had a candle stick project in mind which Alex said was achievable in the one day. We did a lot of forging but the best bit was fire welding which I had always seen done but did not know how the process worked. I was a bit nervous but Alex is a good and patient teacher, and he was happy to answer all my questions, I had a really good and interesting day.
I would highly recommend his one day course."
"My wife bought me the course as a Xmas present. Had a really good interesting day with Alex, where I made a snail letter rack. Alex is a first class teacher and happy to answer all the questions I had - highly recommended."
"It would appear that everyone gives Alex a Five Star review and I have to agree with them all. I had a great day making (like many others) a Rams Head Poker and yet feel I had created something unique. Alex makes the whole experience interesting and fun taking you through each process but leaving you to do all the work on your piece, whilst keeping a watchful eye, so if you do go wrong he'll point it out before any disaster occurs.
This was a Christmas present that I was never going to guess, I hadn't done any Metalwork since I was at school in 1972, yet thanks to Alex I walked out with my poker and everyone (thus far) has been mightily impressed – and it works a treat in our wood burner.
Thanks for a brilliant day Alex."
"One day course was great fun, a good mix of tuition and being left to have a go (in a safe controlled way). I made a Rams Head poker which is used with pride and joy even when the fire doesn't need it :).
I would recommend this course to anyone who has ever wondered what it would be like. Alex is very skilled and good company."
"I am 15 and got this course as a present from my parents. Alex was a fantastic teacher who excelled in guiding me through the process with much support and wisdom. It was a very fun experience and I learnt a lot about a craft that I was interested in. It was also a very rewarding feeling to have the end result, a rams head toasting fork."
"I am 15 and got this course as a present from my parents. Alex was a fantastic teacher who excelled in guiding me through the process with much support and wisdom. It was a very fun experience and I learnt a lot about a craft that I was interested in. It was also a very rewarding feeling to have the end result."
"My 1-day course was a 65th birthday present from my wife, bought after we'd enjoyed a day out to this incredible museum, a hidden gem! As well as being a master craftsman, Alex is a natural tutor brimming with enthusiasm for his craft and infinitely patient in explaining the basic techniques. He has a real gift for sensing how far to leave you to practice what he's shown but always willing to step in and guide, help or takeover as he senses you need. I made a pair of log tongues with pteradactyl handles and two garden lampholders which will have pride of place round my yet-to-be-built fire pit. I came away with an even greater respect for this centuries old craft."
"A superb course and an excellent, patient tutor. I came to Alex with a wish list of skills to try as long as my arm - forge welding, upsetting, drawing down, annealing, normalising, hardening, tempering, bending, twisting, tool manufacture etc etc - we pretty much accomplished the lot in a long hot day at the forge. Alex really knows his stuff and is a very capable tutor. Your experience will be very hands on from the word go. 5***** and looking forward to another session in the future. Cheers."
"I was given a one day course as a birthday present and greatly enjoyed it! I made the rams head poker, which allowed me to learn all sorts of techniques. Alex was a great teacher, and even as a complete novice beforehand I felt like I knew what I was doing! Came away with a great piece, an amazing experience (and quite a few aches!). Would recommend to anyone interested in giving it a go."
"I was bought a 2 day blacksmith course as a Christmas present with Alex, and was not disappointed. Alex is a very patient and knowledgeable instructor with a passion for his work and encourages you have a go at whatever you want to design and make. He keeps you topped up with tea and biscuits whenever you need a break, and the Amberley museum is a great place to have a go at being a smithy. I was pleased with the items I made which was a rams head poker and a large standard light, which was quite challenging due to the size of the piece, but Alex kept me on track and I was pleasantly surprised to get in finished by the end of the second day. I would definitely recommend him to complete beginners or those with some blacksmith experience looking to expand their skills."
"I was bought a day at the forge as a (surprise) birthday present and had a fantastic time. Alex is a very patient and knowledgeable teacher. I would certainly recommend this for anyone with an interest in metalwork or even just the desire for an adventurous day out. The items I made are in use - a dragon's head shoe horn and two ornate lantern brackets (now with lanterns, very pretty)."
"Always wanted to have a go at blacksmithing and I think this was probably the best introduction I could have had. Alex is clearly a very gifted blacksmith (and very nice bloke); his style of instruction is patient and clear and there is no time wasted - from the start you are at the forge and hammering away. Embarrassingly proud of the rams head tongs I made - could not recommend this more highly."
"My husband and I did the one day course, we both had a fantastic day, we made some coat hocks for some drift wood we had. Alex is a very good teacher, patient and explains things very well. My husband had great fun doing some fire welding. We would both highly recommend Alex, Thank you for a great day.5"
"I enjoyed the one day introduction to blacksmithing so much, that this is my second time visiting. Alex is knowledgeable and keen to pass on the experience that he has. I would thoroughly recommend this as a day out as there is something elemental and relaxing about clouting red hot metal and turning it into something useful and beautiful."