SIX professionals put their day jobs on hold for a week to try their hand at being blacksmiths.

They signed up to a five-day blacksmithing course where they learnt to make tools, forge, weld and even get artistic.

Simon Turk, who runs a forest school for children in Gloucestershire, said he wanted to explore something different.

Mr Turk, 45, said: “I thought it sounded exciting and it was certainly in at the deep end.

“We started off making tools, like a pair of tongs and a metal hole punch, and by the end of the week it all got quite free-form and artistic.

“It has been really enjoyable and everyone has got really absorbed and involved.”

The course at Cogges Manor Farm, Witney, cost £120 for the week and students worked 9.30am to 5pm every day.

It was run by the Heritage Craft Alliance which aims to keep rural crafts and traditions alive.

Heritage Craft Alliance centre manager, Jude Newell, said: “This was an intense five-day course where students were hands-on 80 per cent of the time.

Students learnt how to manufacture tools, forge, weld, shape metal objects, with demonstrations on tools, techniques and metallurgy to enhance their knowledge.

“It is ideal for anyone wishing to learn a new useful skill or those wanting an introduction to a new craft career.”

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