Metal work workshops 2019

Learn Something Old

Metal work in Copper, Bronze, Silver and Iron.

Butser Ancient Farm offers a range of metal working workshops for 2019. From the crafting of delicate jewellery, working with softer metals, to the heat and fire of bronze and steel. Our tutors will guide you through the process and your efforts will be rewarded through the creation of a work with your own hands.


Bronze casting, tutor James Clift. We run many bronze workshops throughout the year conducted by bronzesmith James Clift.

Jim bronze assembly

Make a bronze knife or axe £175.00 per person

Make a bronze sword £200.00 per person

Tutor James Clift  runs two types of bronze casting workshops. In the introduction to bronze casting you can make a replica of an ancient axe or ancient knife. The bronze sword workshop is for the casting of a replica bronze age sword. The workshops run separately, so will will be casting either a axe/knife, or a sword. They aren’t designed to run concurrently.

Above are examples of the reproduction bronze objects you can choose from: there are two types of Halstatt knife, two types of palstave axe head, a chalcolithic flat axe and Egyptian-type axe, as well as the Wilburton sword. For more information and detailed images of each, please enquire.

We do have a number of bronze axe /knife workshops scheduled throughout the year. However, James is more than happy to schedule one especially to suit your timetable.

To arrange a bespoke bronze axe or knife workshop date, please email us:

Workshop prices for axes and knives are £175.00 per person.The bronze sword blade workshop are £200.00 per person.  All workshops are for two people and booking fees apply. Sword workshops are booked by contacting us and we will arrange a date to suit your schedule.

To arrange a bespoke bronze sword workshop date, please email us:

Workshop FAQs



Make a Roman Gladius Sword, four-day workshop Saturday 27 and Sunday 28 July, and Saturday 10 and Sunday 11 August. £500 per person.

Ever dreamed of owning your own hand-crafted sword? Join tutor Rod Hughes for a four day Gladius sword making course over two weekends, and go home with your own Roman Gladius sword. See Rod’s website:
The course includes teaching and assistance from a replica bladesmith, to create and take away your own Mainz or Pompeii style Gladius. It will cover a range of skills that would have been required to construct this iconic weapon, including:

  • Forging a steel blade into the correct length and profile, finishing and heat treatment using period techniques.
  • Hilting with a combination of cast and shaped materials.
  • Components may be sculpted and cast in metals including copper, bronze or silver, and grips may be fashioned from wood, bone or faux ivory.

This is a high level, semi-bespoke course. Materials, components and level of assistance can be modified depending on the student’s needs, preferences and skill level. Suitable for an enthusiastic beginner to multi-skilled student. For long distance travellers we can also suggest local accommodation – just ask!

Book here

Workshop FAQs


One day Blacksmithing, Saturday 17 August, £120. Tutor Joe Tyler

Professional blacksmith, Joe Tyler will teach you the basics of blacksmithing. You will learn the basics of blacksmithing and make a fire poker or candle holder to take home with you. No experience is necessary but you need to be reasonably fit and able to use a hammer.

Workshop FAQs

Book here






Introduction to Bronze casting with Jim Clift. £175  per person

We can arrange workshops for anyone interested on a flexible date basis. Please contact Butser Ancient Farm to arrange a workshop date to suit you.

Learn the art of bronze casting and make your own axe or knife. You can choose to make a replica of a middle Bronze Age Palstave axe head found nearby in the Meon valley, or a replica of an antennae knife from the late Bronze Age, used as domestic cutlery.

These workshops are limited to two participants, so you have lots of help and attention from Jim as you work. At the end of the workshop you will have a sand-cast, knife or axe head. The piece is rough cast, ready for finishing, polishing and edging according to your own preference. James will advise you on how to complete this aspect of your work at home.(Please note: no haft is supplied with the axe head, but James provides a haft-making service or can give you advice on making your own as another great project).


Workshop FAQs