Flutemaking trainee sought to avert craft extinction
"The Heritage Crafts Association (HCA) has set out to save British flutemaking by seeking potential trainees interested in learning this intricate and highly-skilled craft from a retiring master.
Stephen Wessel from Somerset is currently believed to be the last full-time craftsperson in the UK making fully handmade Boehm system flutes.
Stephen’s impending retirement, after 35 years in the business, not only ends a long and illustrious career, but could signal the end of flutemaking in the UK – a proud tradition stretching back to the nineteenth century.
Even before news of Stephen’s retirement, the scarcity of British flute makers had led to the craft being reclassified as critically endangered in this year’s edition of the HCA Red List of Endangered Crafts.
As the organisation set up to safeguard traditional craft skills in the UK, the HCA has teamed up with Jonathan Myall (a lifelong flute enthusiast and owner of Just Flutes in South Croydon) who has offered to host and support a trainee while they learn the craft from Stephen."
See the full posting here.September 09th