Help Build and Equip and Workshop Fit for Heroes

Thursday 28 November 2013

Robert Sorby has launched a campaign with a group of woodworking volunteers to help change the lives of veterans and members of the Armed Forces on the road to recovery.

The goal is to raise £30,000 to build and equip a woodworking facility for wounded, injured and sick servicemen, servicewomen and veterans at the Help for Heroes run Phoenix House Recovery Centre, Catterick, North Yorkshire.

The move follows a series of successful workshops where injured servicemen, women and veterans received first-hand experience turning and carving wood. The response was so positive that a campaign to create a more permanent fixture was launched at the North of England Woodworking and Power Tool Show in Harrogate last week.

The project aims to offer recovering soldiers the opportunity to be inspired by master woodsmen from many disciplines including coracle building, bow making, carving and woodturning. “The guys who visited Robert Sorby had a fantastic time and were really engaged in the process. Woodworking is very therapeutic in many ways and we are confident that we would have a long waiting list were we able to offer our wounded, injured and sick servicemen, women and veterans the opportunity to have a go on a more regular basis! We are very grateful to Robert Sorby for offering to help make this a reality,” said Kelly Bostock, Support Programme Manager at Phoenix House.

Former Warrant Officer Chris Morgan, Dave Purvis, chairman of the Coracle Society and Catterick local and bow maker Fred Bates, set up The Woodworking Volunteers soon after the new centre opened its doors earlier this year.

With the help of Robert Sorby and the staff at Phoenix House, a more permanent fixture was discussed and the Workshop for Heroes campaign was born with the ambition of making woodworking part of services available to centre users.

Robert Sorby, managing director, Phil Proctor said: "We started with two woodturning workshops for Help for Heroes recovery centres at Phoenix House in Catterick and Chavasse VC House in Colchester. We hoped woodturning would be a fantastic addition to the services provided at the centres and that it would certainly help with the rehabilitation and recovery process. It became clear from the beginning that a workshop onsite would provide centre users with further opportunity, providing a sustained woodworking facility and a foundation to develop all types of woodworking provision. It would also provide a base to invite expert and professional woodworkers from all disciplines to guide and tutor centre users. We're delighted to be a part of the project and request all our colleagues in the woodworking business to do what they can to help."


Contact: Robert Sorby