12 week Furniture Making

Intensive and practical: the course includes skill building, a Level 3 qualification and a personal project piece designed and made by the student. It includes 400 hours of scheduled bench time supervised by Instructor, Mark Ripley, a trained furniture designer/maker with over 30 years of professional experience. Visit www.mark-ripley.com for more information.

The workshops are accessible out of hours for students to continue working in their own time. The workshops include a bench shop with a cabinet making bench for each student, tool kit sufficient for completing the course and a separate dedicated machine shop which includes a range of small industrial quality floor standing machines and bench top machinery.

We visit workshops and galleries within an hour or so of Lyme Regis and a timber yard to buy wood for the project. Bi-weekly individual tutorials are held between you and the instructor where feedback is given in confidence.

The course features three distinct phases:

Skill Building

The first five weeks of the course focus on hand skills and power tool use. This includes sharpening, hand tool use, timber preparation and joint making. During this time the student will make a range of items including a bread board and dovetailed box with veneered top, hinges and a lock. During this phase of the course daily seminars are held on the theory of construction, timber technology, techniques such as steam bending and veneering and much more. Hand outs are given to support learning and The Woodworkers Manual, Jackson and Day is included in the fee as a study aid.

Level 3 Diploma

Weeks 6-9 are level three assignments undertaken by all students as training exercises. These are a small coffee table and a small Cherry and Maple cabinet with doors and a drawer. In addition you may take the optional Level 3 qualification. This is unique to the BBA and is externally assessed by PIABC. It includes 4 exams and 3 technical drawing assignments and is broadly equivalent to City and Guilds level 3 or an A level.

Personal Project Piece

During the final phase of the course students make a personal project piece. This will have been designed by the student in consultation with the instructor during the first 9 weeks. It will develop the skills learned so far and while the scope is broad it must be smaller than your bench top and be completed within three weeks. Typical projects include chairs, chests and coffee tables. Timber for the project is the only element of cost not included in the course fee. Visit our Furniture Archive to see examples of past students’ work.

Course Fee

The fee for the 12 week Furniture Making course is £5,850 plus the cost of the materials for your personal project piece.

Students benefit from the good discounts we receive from our suppliers. All pieces you produce other than the personal project piece are included in the fee.

Course Dates

9 September – 29 November (This course is now full)

6 January – 27 March 2020

21 September – 11 December 2020

A maximum of eight people are accepted onto each course

For details of how to apply, click here.