You don’t have to be rich to rule my world

You don’t have to be rich to rule my world

In any typical year, Rowden can expect to see between thirty and forty students participate in courses running from one week to a year, sometimes more, rarely less. With such a number, it should be no surprise to hear that there is a tremendous diversity of backgrounds. We’ve talked about people arriving at the decision to learn more about furniture making at different times in their lives, and about the fact that they come from all over the world.

What is less well known is the paths they have taken in their lives that have brought them to Rowden.

The list is almost as long as the list of students. While engineering is a consistent theme, we can include members of the Armed Forces, architects, accountants, students, photographers, plumbers and electricians, builders and decorators, fine artists, tree surgeons, teachers, writers (ahem!), city folk, and doctors, some with PhDs. We can list many, many people who felt they’d spent too long in front of a computer screen. At least a couple took themselves out of the crazy hi tech world of Formula 1 to become fine furniture makers.  The list goes on and on… but I won’t!

And how wonderful is it that there is almost no correlation between what people have done before and what they have decided to do now. It is possible to think that the thing that unites them in their wish to be (better) makers has more, much more, to do with their own personalities, to do with their desire to create, to build something personal, with integrity, something that is permanent.

Anyone who has spent time at Rowden will recognise this, that regardless of background, all students experience this broad common desire to make, and to make well.

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.

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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.