Clive Knowles from the British Ironwork Centre near to Oswestry in Shropshire welcomed Contributing Editor Val Baynton on a visit in early September. Having been open less than two years, Val was impressed with the rapidly expanding and free to visit centre, which aims to show the best of British metalworking including silver-smithing, copper-making and blacksmithing, with several artisans demonstrating their metalworking skills.
There’s an extensive gift shop selling a variety of objects made from metal, sourced both from the UK and from around the world, and there’s everything from garden and conservatory furniture to decorative and useful objects for the home available. There’s also amazing large-scale sculptures of animals from the majestic silverback gorilla to an assortment of farmyard creatures to be enjoyed, whilst discovering salient points about the endangered nature of many of these species. A walking trail, accessible to wheelchair users, around the animals is being created and a large café will open in time for the winter season. Falconry displays also take place regularly and groups can book a dedicated host or wander freely around the centre.
Its location on the A5 close to Oswestry makes it a great stopping place for groups travelling between North Wales and the Midlands, as well as those visiting the market town of Oswestry too.