Nailsworth Community Workshop

Longbow making weekend

As the country starts the long journey to opening up again we will be restarting our courses in July with new social distancing and smaller numbers.

We offer the opportunity to make a longbow in a weekend. We start on a Friday evening by laminating three woods together - usually hickory, lemon wood and purple heart. Over the next two days we tiller the bow and making a string. All bows have horn knocks. If you are over 6 foot please let us know when you book your place.

The weekends start on Friday evening at 7–9.30 when you will laminate the woods. On Saturday and Sunday the hours are 9.30–5.00 and we are delighted that we have been awarded a gold star by Craft Courses for our knife and bow weekends.

We will provide teas and coffees but ask you to provide your own lunch. We are based in the centre of Nailsworth where there are many shops and cafes.

You can also make a longbow at our open workshops.

One of our participants recently made this time laps film of the weekend.  It give a great idea of the process including the tea breaks!


Archery UK article

In June 2022 there was an article about the weekend in Archery UK.  Do have a read


"Hi Pam,
Just thought that I would drop a quick line about the weekend.
I cannot fully express in words how amazing the weekend was. I knew it would be fun, but it was higher than my expectations. From the depth of knowledge that Gavin and Tom have, their presentation and how they worked with us. Mostly newbies to making things let alone a Longbow. Their sense of humour and banter made it all more enjoyable. We were helped every step of the way and we all walked away with working bows. Can’t wait to start using it.
I’m tempted to book again for some time next year, but my wife said no…I will work on that one."

"I just wanted to say how much I enjoyed the weekend with Gavin and Tom. I came because I wanted to understand more about the history of making of these iconic Longbows and the course exceeded every expectation. Fascinating and fun and at the end I had a fabulous Longbow. I loved the weekend…it was perfect!
Please pass on my thanks to Tom and most of all Gavin who was so knowledgable and interesting to learn from. With my kindest regards"

"Hi Pam
Just a quick note to let you know how much we both enjoyed the bow making weekend . We still cant quite believe we actually managed to make such excellent quality bows , but the level of coaching did go along way to ensuring we came away with bows the exceeded all our expectations .
Just a massive thank you to everyone involved, the guys were just brilliant , instantly felt very welcome and at home.
We will be back on further courses ."

“Please pass on my thanks to Gavin for all his help over the weekend. I used my new bow this weekend and it is great. No problems and even managed to hit the gold a few times.”

“Thanks to you all for a marvellous weekend.”

“I said thank you a lot as I left but I don't think that expresses enough how much I enjoyed my long bow course! Gavin was such a help in by enthusing me to not only want to build more bows but also find out more about he subject in general. Tom has also made me think more about the tools I use and that I want to learn more about them and given me many ideas on what to fill my man cave with (don't tell the wife).”

“I loved the relaxed way things were taught and the fun that was had by all, I even enjoyed the Wombles being played on the record player!”

“Fantastic tutor and wonderful quality of teaching and content. Great camaraderie. Overall I would find it very difficult to improve this course.”

“Thanks to Gavin for running a fabulous course over the weekend. Pete and I loved every minute and are very proud of our bows. Gavin made the course a lot of fun, and we learned a great deal from him. It's clear that he knows a lot about his subject and he succedded in transferring some of his knowledge to us in a fun and interesting way.”

“I can’t praise him enough – it was a truly wonderful weekend with an excellent result. I’m so chuffed with my bow, it’s a work of art and I can’t wait to shoot it!”

“I wanted to let you know how much I enjoyed the bow making course this weekend. Gavin's instruction was excellent and all the bow makers walked away with bows we were all proud of. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend the course to anyone even slightly interested in bow making and I hope to see you all again when I come down to buy some wood to make a bow at home (yes I am that confident).”

“Just a quick note to say what a memorable weekend I had making my longbow. The course was fantastic, well run, well organised with very knowledgeable instructors always on hand. I think everyone enjoyed themselves. Especially the Jaffa cakes!”

“Many thanks, I only wish I lived closer because I would be a regular attender.”