Down at the Forge
This week a cracking opportunity to see a blacksmith at work.
Now I don’t know about you but for me blacksmiths were always big bulky red faced guys with sonorous voices arms and legs like tree trunks, beards long leather aprons and surrounded by hammers, horse shoes and fire.
The trip to Fransham Forge in Norfolk was something of an eye opener. The gallery, gardens and accommodation offered was not what I was anticipating. The garden was full of artistic objects that could have been part of any craft fair – except for the fact that they were all made of metal.
I quickly go over the metallic butterfly garden seat, but the poppies, the kettle on a tripod and a giant cobweb did come as something of a shock. They were indeed works of art.
The Forge also has, a gallery, an online shop and accommodation in a renovated shepherd’s hut.
Later on when we braved the workshop itself . It all seemed a little more familiar and I awarded myself a bonus point for spotting an anvil. But this was not heavy industrial workshop. The products which emerged from the heating and re-heating, the beating and polishing were small almost delicate items.
Nigel, the blacksmith seemed almost unassuming – no beard, no blood-pressure, gently spoken – the rest you can judge from the pictures.
Better still go and look for yourself
Fransham Forge Cranes Corner, Great Fransham, Dereham NR19 2HX