Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Student Industrial Tour 2014 Held for furniture Students

The Student Industrial Tour 2014 of the Furniture Company took place in early April, giving 34 Foundation, BA and MA students, of varying ages and drawn from many different colleges and universities, the chance to visit a number of our industry partners.

Organised by The Furniture Makers’ Company as part of the extensive education programme, the tour was led by Liveryman Pauline Purves; Grants and Education Manager Damilola Bamidele; Richard Jones, Programme Leader BA (Hons) Furniture Making at Leeds College of Art; and Doug Morris, previously a lecturer at Rycotewood College.

Burgess Beds showed the students the intricacies of producing handmade and bespoke beds, and talked about how a small family-run business can be grown.

Knightsbridge Furniture Productions, which manufactures hotel, community care and healthcare furniture, gave the group a tour of the factory and they met key design and production personnel. At CD limited, the exclusive distributors of the specialised manmade material CORIAN, the students saw the machinery and tools involved with production, and toured the showroom where the end products are displayed.

Makers of upholstery foams, Vitafoam, gave the group a tour of both of their huge sites, the first where they saw how foam is made, and the other where foam is cut.

Alice Mansell, studying Interior Furniture at Wolverhampton University, said: “This tour has benefited me as a designer in so many ways. Seeing British craftsman, making British products right in front of me definitely brought a tear to my eye. The illusion of ‘we don’t make anything anymore’ I now know to be wrong and I will freely admit to becoming very patriotic as I visited the numerous sites.

“Every single site visit was beneficial and extremely insightful. This experience will stay with me forever and has provided me with the drive to keep our British furniture making industry alive. On behalf of myself and The University of Wolverhampton, thank you for the amazing opportunity.”

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