Made in England

DSCF1295It was wonderful to see eighteen new Anarchist’s Tool Chests emerge out of Warwickshire College’s workshops yesterday. Everyone put in huge effort in the hottest week of the year to produce a great result.  On behalf of New English Workshop we would like to thank everyone who signed up for this course:  We could not have wished for a better group of people to work with and none of this could have happened without them.  Everyone without exception learned a great deal from their experience and from Chris’s diligent and thoughtful tuition. New English Workshop will run many more courses next year with Chris and other high profile woodworkers but no one can take away that everyone in the pictures you see were the very first who agreed to work with us: Thank you.


We would also like to thank our hosts at Warwickshire College and in particular the workshop manager and tutor Jamie Ward who, time and again, went the extra mile to help students out and to keep the course running smoothly. We could not have asked for more.

Thanks to many the many toolmakers and suppliers who have been our partners and donated tools to fill the chest that Chris made on this course, we will be able to fill it, auction it off and donate the entire proceeds to Warwickshire College in order to help future aspiring woodworkers.

We would like to reserve the biggest thank you to Chris Schwarz. Not simply for the Herculean efforts he put in throughout this course but also for something bigger than that: The building of  English cabinetmakers’ tool chests of this form has probably not happened in well over a century in England.  Chris is the man who has, single-handedly, completed scholarly and diligent research into the form, who built and rebuilt the form many times, set up Lost Art Press and who wrote and published the book that has lit up the woodworking world. Now, he has completed the circle and brought this English form back to its roots. That is a significant moment in the craft of cabinetmaking in the UK and we are very grateful to Chris for his knowledge, patience, diligence and dedication. So from DJ and I: Thank you Chris.

Most of all; it was great fun. We promised it would be.

– Paul Mayon



6 thoughts on “Made in England

  1. I for one would like to extend my thanks to Chris, Derek, Paul and Jamie for a fantastic, informative and fun week I’ve never enjoyed hard work so much, all of these guys went above and beyond what was expected of them and I’m sure I speak for every course member when I say “thanks and we look forward to the next ”


  2. Dear Paul

    Congratulations on what has clearly been a successful course. As someone trying to build the chest alone, from the book, I was interested in where you sourced your cut nails from? The only ones I have been able to find here in the UK are massive ones for nailing floorboards down! I would be very grateful if you could post the details of the nails you used and where to buy them from. Thank you kindly.


  3. Hi Tom – it has been very dificult to get cut nails at all in the UK. Rutlands do stock them but were out of stock when we approached them (we needed 13 kg…). Therefore, like you I suspect, we were forced to go to Screwfix and yes; ours were pretty chunky stamped affairs (but not impossible to work with as they were the specified 6d size). Chris put up a post about them on his Lost Art Press blog. I received a bit of a roasting on several forums for picking those! The only other alternative is to go to Tremont Nail Company in the USA and pay Mr Osborne’s cut when they hit the docks in the UK. That makes the real deal very, very expensive indeed.

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