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Wednesday, 14 December 2011

The New Workshop Heaven!

We have recently moved into new larger premises at the Alkerton Oaks Business Park, situated between Banbury and Stratford upon Avon on the A422, about five minutes drive from junction 12 of the M40.

The local area is literally dripping with history, within a couple of miles we have RAF Edgehill where the top secret E28-39, powered by Mr Whittle's jet engine, was developed into the Gloster Meteor. There is also the field of the first pitched battle of the English Civil war in 1642 and the glorious Upton House which was built just 46 years later, developed and preserved by a family that started a little company called Shell, and is now a National Trust treasure.

The Upton Estate remains in private hands and has over 300 acres of woodland, managed in accordance with the higher level countryside stewardship scheme. The estate also farms 1400 acres of arable land, producing conservation grade cereals for Jordans.

The trimmings from the woodland management scheme (currently coniferous nurse trees planted to encourage straight growth in the main crop) end up in a biomass boiler that provides heat and hot water for our new offices and warehouse. As a result the only fossil fuels that the building consumes are a splash in the chainsaw and a dash the chipper. I am hoping that when the current batch of harvested hardwoods have been air dried we will be able to offer boards of premium furniture grade timber with the minimum possible wood mileage.

The building itself is incredibly well insulated, achieving an A rating for energy efficiency. The interior was custom built to our specifications and although we have had to wait a little longer than expected to move in, giving the contractors time to do their job beautifully has paid huge dividends in terms of the quality of finish achieved - heck if we can't appreciate and encourage good workmanship nobody can!

As before, we will continue to receive visitors by appointment and once the workshop area is complete you will have the opportunity to test out your purchases on the premises and receive free tuition in how to care for and use your new tools.