The Valewoodcraft Community projectBy: Steve Hill London
Welcome to Valewoodturner
Craftsmanship has been a tradition in my family for over 200 years.
Not only do I turn wood on a lathe to produce a range of products, but I am also a skilled Pyrography artist.
I currently do this as a hobby, however I am now expanding this to become a business and a charitable organisation,
First of all serving the Forest of Marston Vale area in Bedfordshire the expanding one centre at a time.
The business will see the production and sale of local crafts, Interactive workshops and in the future, Sensory rooms and will promote the importance of conservation of the world that we live in while raising money to help expand my project further in the future.
I am currently in discussions with the Wildlife trust about a suitable venue near stewartby in Bedfordshire where I can construct a workshop with a small shop.
Customers of the shop will be able to see me and other craftspersons in action through a viewing window, opening their eyes to what goes into the production of the items that they can see in the shop itself.
In time I would like to expand this further to include a cafe with additional facilities for disabled children and adults through sensory rooms.
I will also be introducing interactive workshops where the users of the facility can get involved and learn how to make items for themselves under expert guidance and supervision.
This will prove popular with people of all ages including the disabled, disadvantaged, school children and private parties.
An Ecological future
The future of British hand-made crafts is in the next generation; if we are unable to pass these skills down they will be lost forever.
I am promoting this as well as education on conservation, recycling and reusing (every single item is produced from 100% recycled materials which have been saved from incineration).
The project and the venue will hopefully be 100% sustainable and will one day be completely self-sufficient; I am investigating the options with regard to many different kinds of renewable energy sources with regard to heating, lighting, powering the machines and water supply.
Myself and my backing
This project has the backing of the Royal British Legion, who are acting as a Mentor for me as this is my first business venture of this type.
I have previously served as a Soldier and I have been diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder as well as Depression. I have been support not only by the RBL but Mind and various other charitable organisations who I would love to contribute to as the work that they carry out is incredible.
The project is not only aimed at helping those who have helped me, but to give the community of Marston Vale a charitable project that they can get involved with and hold dear to them.
This also gives me the chance to help myself into recovery; by doing something that I love and that I am passionate about.
What we need to get the ball rolling.
I am running my 10 year old pc from home at the minute, I have it set up exclusivly for my business planning, I am usung a dell printer to print out origonal copies of my official documents and have run out of ink,
What we need to start is some office equipment and running consumables just to keep us going for a couple of months untill we can arrange funding. We are seeking to apply for a Comunity Development grant, we are just in the process of making sure we fill all the criteria to do this.
My main pledge you the public who donate to Valewoodturner
We will be collecting photographic evidence and displaying it online to show that we are using all funding appropriately. I Will be updating my blogs and fb page regulary.
If you have any questions or need any information at all please do not hesitate to email me or message me. I will reply as promptly as I can.
Thank you for taking the time to read my pitch and i look forward to giving you all good news in the future.
Steve Hill (Valewoodturner)
Alternatively I can be found hanging around my Facebook page
" To beat depresion you have to go right back to the switch that changed your life"
28-09-2012 02:52 PM
All the official documents like the business plan and cashflow forecasts are complete now.
At the end of the second years trading we stand to make in the region of £50,000 for local good causes and charities.