In 2021 the Clocaenog Forest Wind Farm Fund launched RWE’s first ever UK business grants.
Wernog Wood was one of the first successful businesses who received a grant of £9,326.00 towards purchasing a Wood-Mizer sawmill enabling them to process their own timber. They can now also expand the variety of timber related courses on offer to their students, and employ a wider base of tutors. It will also help them to furnish student accommodation.
The Wood-Mizer has enabled them to process their own timber for the following projects so far without having to transport it from far:
Next year they hope to add new courses such as live edge or steam bent furniture, tableware and home furnishings, wood cut or carving as an example but there may be others too.
To date this year (January - August), they have already run 34 courses and have a further 12 courses planned before the end of the year, i.e. 46 courses in all, with a total 290 student spaces available. The students have come from Wales, England, Scotland as well as further afield from US, Holland and Finland. Course feedback often describes the mental well-being that the courses bring to those who attend, the pride in producing a high-quality product and the camaraderie within the group.
I’m coming away from the chairmaking course in Wernog Wood with fresh ideas and skills that I intend to enhance and influence my future chair making and career. My plan is to keep building up my knowledge, skills, portfolio and social media with the aim to start producing and selling my own designed chairs. This course was a massive step forward for me, I feel more confident that I can achieve my goal now.
In 2018 Wernog Wood opened with just one tutor, last year they employed 14, and this year they have employed 18 freelance tutors. Next year they hope to employ more. As well as the tutors they now employ a part time cleaner. This employment helps build upon prosperous communities.