Episode #84 – Bruce Beamish “The Power Hammer Baron”

 

Bruce Beamish is an industrial-trained blacksmith in Australia, his passion for blacksmithing started when he was 15 in school.  He took a metals class that included forging.  After school he decided to continue learning the craft and work as an apprentice, he was offered a job with the Australian Navy as an industrial blacksmith.

bruce-with-denise-and-james
Bruce with Denise Axelsen and James Johnson.

What We Talked About

  • Bruce tells us how his ABANA 2016 experience was as an attendee and an Anyang Rep, demonstrating some the Anyang Hammers onsite.
  • Being a faraway Australian member of ABANA for many years, he recalls the first five years of ABANA and how Dick Quinnell visited one the early conferences and was inspired to start the British Artist Blacksmith Association back in the UK.
  • Australia has many state-based blacksmith associations, though it doesn’t have one large association that covers all of Australia, such as ABANA.
  • Bruce’s passion for blacksmithing started when he was 15 in school. He took a metals class that included forging metal.  After school he decided to continue forging and work as an apprentice, he was offered a job with the Australian Navy as an industrial blacksmith.
  • We talk about why Bruce approached me to do an Australian Series of podcasts with Aussie blacksmiths. He would like to bring awareness of the craft to the Australian public as well as grow the education opportunities for blacksmiths.
  • The Australian Series of podcasts will include interviewing:
    • Lindsay Cole, the head instructor at Ultimo TAFE (TAFE stands for Technical And Further Education government funded college) for the trade training of industrial blacksmiths
    • Matt Mewburn, Matt is a successful graduate of Lindsay’s teaching and is now running classes himself at the historic Eveleigh Railway Blacksmith Shop as well as running his own business.
    • Amanda Gibson, coordinated the Tree Project, a mammoth undertaking in time, resilience and determination. The Tree project is a memorial to the people who lost their lives in the Black Saturday Bushfires of 2009.  It is a full sized tree forged from Stainless Steel covered with over three thousand leaves from around the world.  It is set in a very peaceful garden setting with forged timber and steel seating and a lovely garden, it is a special place you cannot help but be touched when you visit it.
    • Denise Axelsen trained at Hereford and she is a past secretary of BABA. She has travelled to a number of places to live and that is a story in itself, blacksmithing in Saudi Arabia (as a woman). In Perth, Australia, Cairns, Australia and now a new forge in rural Victoria.

Guest Links

A Big Thank You to today’s sponsor – Gameco Artisan Supplies

 

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