Our van has just completed it’s 150 thousandth mile! Not all with us mind you, in fact just about 50k have been in the faithful service of our little company. Jonathan, being a mathsy ex-accountant type of chap, has worked out that it has cost us just 20p a mile for the last 5 years, including depreciation.

What an absolute bargain!

When we got it I remember thinking to myself that this white box on wheels would be a money pit, but I am delighted to have been proved wrong, much to Jonathan’s relief.

And there is a lesson in this. It is very easy to spend your time worrying about the income side, getting in projects, pricing them well, and turning them around efficiently. It is trickier keeping a tight lid on costs, especially when you have large machines to maintain and a cavernous workshop that needs heating and lighting.

One of the great benefits of setting up away from the cities (and there are a huge number of reasons why life is better in the countryside), is that local services are reliable and inexpensive. This is because recommendations and a good reputation are crucial to survival. We didn’t buy the van new, though we know some who have and spent a small fortune in the process. Instead, we continue to rely on local services to keep it – and our machinery – all well maintained.

Being a crafty pair of crafties we have saved a fortune simply by not spending a fortune where we didn’t need to, and so far (touch wood), so good!

Until next time,



David established Rowden Atelier in 1995, a now world renowned fine woodworking school. Discover Rowden, the woodworking courses, and the work that students go on to do.

Looking for our woodworking courses?

Rowdenatelier.com is the new home of Rowden Atelier Fine Woodworking School.

It is where you will now find all the information about our renowned fine woodworking courses, our ethos, and why our students go on to do so many great things. This site remains dedicated to the designs and work, of Rowden’s Founder; David Savage. If you are looking for our woodworking courses, please click here.