Home Profile Gallery Courses Students Policies Contacts

Mary Ashton - Woodturner

My woodturning journey initially began in the 1980’s whilst taking part in a course at the Bristol Women’s Workshop. It was there that I discovered my affinity for working with wood and was consequently encouraged by my tutor to further study and pursue a career teaching woodwork. Having left school at the age of fifteen, with virtually no qualifications, I had previously had a very varied work life which included cook, white van driver and driving instructor.

I eventually felt that I had found my niche in life and took the advice seriously going on to study Fine Furniture and Woodmachining to Advanced level at City of Bristol College. Later returning as an instructor on the Furniture course.


Orchard Workshop

I began provision of woodwork courses through Orchard Workshop in the year 2000. I have worked there continually since then, at our lovely site in Kingswood, Bristol.

In 2004 I began teaching woodturning courses.

During my time with Orchard Workshop I have had the pleasure of teaching many people from all walks of life, including working with vulnerable adults, and those with learning difficulties. Visit www.orchardworkshop.co.uk to see a list of their other course options.


Register of Professional Turners (RPT)

I was assessed by The Worshipful Company of Turners and accepted onto the Register of Professional Turners in August 2009. Since then I have gained more recognition for my woodturning, tutoring and demonstration skills. In September 2012 I was invited to demonstrate at the National Woodturning Seminar in Ireland which was a fantastic experience.


Max Carey Woodturning Trust (MCWT)

I have been a trustee for the MCWT since its conception in 2008. MCWT was set up in order to develop the public in the art of woodturning and is a corporate member of the Association of Woodturners of Great Britain.

Wood is beautiful….

As woodturning continues to progress and inspire those who visit galleries and seminars I am pleased to help satisfy the demand for courses in the subject.

Wood is such a naturally beautiful and tactile medium to work with and the possibilities are boundless in the creation of artistic, sculptural and useful objects.