Joined Carpenter Oak: 2002
What is the best project you have worked on and why?
Frizealach House, near Glenuig – a thirteen week project which I led on a tricky peninsula jutting out to sea. Oak frame outside, Douglas fir inside, nice client, lots of interesting follow on-stuff, swimming at lunch.
When not in the yard, what do you enjoy doing?
Outdoorsy stuff – climbing, sea kayaking, open boat paddling trips especially. Family get-togethers, bonfires, camping, sleeping in extreme places, bivvying, van trips and playing with wood and metal.
If stranded on a desert island, which three people would you take and why?
My wife (cleaning/washing up etc – don’t quote me though) My old mate Pink – a cool dude in most situations Dolly Parton – for singalongs around the fire
Which three people would be in your dream carpentry team and why?
Ian McCloud, Jaime Ward, Sam Turley – interesting, travelled people with lots of framing skills
What is the most embarrassing job you have ever had?
Playing father Christmas at a local youth club
What music do you listen to?
I have a selection of middle of the road bands on my phone, but enjoy other people’s music collections – music can definitely instigate a mood.
What is the best comedy film ever made?
Waking Ned (British comedy usually has me in stitches)
What do you enjoy most about working with wood/oak?
The ease with which you can fashion something that could potentially still be around in a thousand years’ time.
Do you have a favourite quote?
‘You’ll only get a 500 year guarantee if it’s an oak frame’
Where is your favourite place in the world?
Home and Glenisla, then the Cuillin Hills, Skye
I’ve had 45 practical years in industry, starting life as an apprentice welder through maintaining a reactor plant, to access work on dams and high rise flats. Married, had two kids, remarried Jackie, opened a smithy for seven years. In 2002, in my mid-forties the opportunity to learn carpentry arose through Carpenter Oak – still learning all these years later. Never once looked back with regrets. I try to keep the electronic world as a periphery and have never lost interest in the seasons and the natural world.