Ian Banstead

My granddad was a coach builder on the railways at Melton Constables in Norfolk and then went into the building trade as a carpenter/joiner and also my late father continued the craft too. That‘s probably why I like working with wood.
I was a Qualified electrician for nearly 10 years before losing my sight.

In 2003 I went to RNIB’s Manor House in Torquay all the way down in Devonshire. I enrolled on a 12 months woodturning course with Robbie Farrance, but I only received 3 months before the wood working department closed on me! But soon after the whole of Manor House closed down too! It had been standing proud for 65years! What a loss!

I came home and struggled for 3 years until I met Dick Waller, a retired professional woodturner and he has transform my skill and enjoyment in woodturning! Dick is more a traditional woodturner employing simple methods and tricks of the trade! None of those computer controlled lathe with control knobs and gears! Just the chisel on the plate and off you go! He designed me some special shaped chisels to allow me to cut various patterns and shapes.