Silversmithing Summer School with John Norgate

Ref: S6D08980


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About this course

Immerse yourself in silversmithing as you extend your skills and develop new and challenging ideas for your work. You will work on your own personal projects such as bowls, boxes and spoons, receiving tuition on a one-to-one basis. The tutor covers a vast range of metalworking techniques for forming, fabricating, assembling, joining and finishing - including making joints and hinges.

Course Description

On this course you will have the opportunity to develop new skills and further develop previously-gained skills. Tuition is given on a one-to-one basis and the techniques covered are: raising and planishing, seamed and raised (symmetrical and asymmetrical), scoring, fabrication, use of the Bonny Doon press; making a joint (hinge), book, flush, sprung and appropriate catches; assembly by soldering rivets or screw threads.

You may wish to experiment with different types of finish and decoration. Although the College has a good range of tools, it may be necessary to make specific tools where your design necessitates.

The tutor is available to discuss, prior to the course, your design, or what you wish to attain from the course and will advise on the sizes of material needed, as this will save valuable time when the course begins and source specialist tools where necessary. Being students with previous experience, it is most probable that you will have some tools of your own and you are encouraged to bring them. Please mark your tools with two colours as very often students have the same colour. West Dean tools are marked with orange.

Working in a workshop environment, you are advised to wear protective clothing and certain processes will need eye protection.

Please note: it is important that you respond to the Course Preferences section (see Additional Information below). Please email your replies to: This will be shared with the tutor.


Arrival Day - this is the first date listed above

Courses start early evening. Residential students to arrive from 4pm, non-residential students to arrive by 6.45pm.

6.45pm: Welcome, followed by dinner (included).

8 - 9pm: First teaching session, attendance is essential.

Daily timetable

Classes 9.15 - 5pm, lunch is included.

From 6.30pm: Dinner (included for residential students).

Evening working - students may have access to workshops, but only with their tutor's permission and provided any health and safety guidelines are observed.

Last day

Classes 9.15am - 3pm, lunch is included.

Residential students are to vacate their rooms by 10am please.

(This timetable is for courses of more than one day in length. The tutor may make slight variations)

Course Materials

What students need to bring

  • Protective clothing including strong shoes (please note that open-toed shoes/sandals must not be worn in the workshops).
  • Personal tool kit - if you have one (Please mark all tools - the College equipment has orange marks).
  • Your ideas/sketches/work in progress - as discussed with the tutor.

Available to buy

  • Silver: please note the College Shop has silver available for students to purchase, but anyone requiring more than 156.25 sq cms (25 sq ins) should obtain it from a bullion supplier

Important - Course Preferences

As this Summer School aims to meet the needs of individual students, the work programme is arranged between the tutor and yourself as far as possible. Please respond to the numbered sections below and return by email to in advance of the course. This will be shared with the tutor.

1. Please give a brief account of previous experience and items made.

2. Do you wish to start and complete a finished item within the 6 days? Please indicate intended project and send a simple sketch.

3. Is there any special technique, skill or procedure you wish to study (perhaps as a single item in isolation until you gain proficiency)? Please give full details. If time and circumstances permit, I will discuss this with you.

4. Please include your email address and phone number.


John Norgate

John Norgate a Fellow of the Institute of Professional Goldsmiths. Trained at Aspreys and Sir John Cass where he also taught for many years. In 2010 he was a gold and silver award winner at Goldsmiths for craftsmanship and design.


Residential option available. Find out accommodation costs and how to book here.

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