Funding support needed to help new Northumberland pottery studio get up and running

A new pottery workshop and studio is set to open in a historic building unoccupied for over 30 years.

Friday, 31st July 2020, 7:52 am

Ravn Clay, the brainchild of Keith Webster, is starting up in the timber loft of the old Ford Forge building next to the Heatherslaw Light Railway.

However, with costs rising due to the need for new electrics and plumbing, he is seeking funding support to turn his dreams into reality.

“Initially the one big bit of kit we need is a kiln, and so far we've raised just over £2,000 towards this, so we are comfortably over half way there,” Keith explains.

Keith Webster is hoping to open a pottery workshop in Ford.

“But the Kickstarter is an All-or-Nothing Campaign, so if we don't reach the target of £3,650 by Thursday, August 6, we'll receive nothing - despite the amazing support there is out there.

“And if by some happy chance we exceed the total, there's plenty of other kit that will be needed for classes - including multiple pottery wheels.”

The workshop is the realisation of a long held ambition to not only practice pottery, but also offer classes and workshops for people interested in learning a new skill.

Currently the pottery is run out of his home in Berwick but limited space has become a problem.

The old forge in Ford.

“I have to use a friend's kiln at the moment," he explained, "so the chance to produce work and develop as a potter is slowed down considerably by the drive to Alnwick and back.”

Keith’s pottery journey started many years ago, when he worked as an archaeologist in London but it was only in the last 12 months that he finally attended the Edinburgh Ceramics Workshop to better understand how pottery is made.

“When I moved to Northumberland I decided I was going to take evening classes because I'd always wanted to try my hand at pottery, but finding a venue proved very difficult,” he said,

"I am not yet experienced or practiced enough to offer classes, but Ravn Clay is about eventually making these opportunities available to people who, because they don't live near a major town or city, are denied the chance to play with clay.”

The old forge has been cleared - but funding is still needed for a kiln.

To see how you can support the project, visit www.ravnclay.co.uk

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Keith Webster with his dog, Raven.

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