BWTA History


The Association was formed in 1946 to represent the interests of the industrial wood turners that were coming to terms with the many changes that were taking place in the industry at that time.

As you will see from our list of members our membership now includes a substantial number of the major wood turners in the country, covering the many facets of commercial wood turning activities, embracing industrial items such as furniture components, sporting equipment and tool handles. Our members employ a wide range of turning machines including Rotary and Fixed Knife Lathes, Copy and Copying Lathes. Many members offer a wide range of other machining and finishing operations to the turned components that they produce.

The Association has been involved in assisting the Health and Safety Executive on a number of occasions in formulating policies on a wide range of problems relating to wood turning machinery. We have gained acceptance by them of our special problems, and the guidelines, which have been published, reflect the points made by the Association.

We have also been involved in giving evidence to the European Working Group 8 on the safety of Rotary Lathe Tooling. It was important to convince them of the safety of our cutter equipment so that its use can be continued under European legislation. Exemption for Rotary Knife Tooling was gained against very hostile opposition from other European delegations. This work was vital if the wood turning industry in this country is to survive in its present form.

Our membership is solely made up of industrial trade wood turners who have the substance of their manufacturing facilities based in the United Kingdom. All applications for membership have to be approved by the other current members of the Association.

Past Chairman

1946-47 A H Turner
1947-48 A R Brown
1948-49 N. Garside
1949-50 C. Barnes
1950-51 S. Berrisford
1951-52 W. E. J. Lunn
1952-53 A. E. Saunders
1953-54 A. R. Brown
1954-55 F. Parker
1955-56 A. B. V. Brown
1956-57 K. J. Garside
1957-58 K. A. Allen
1958-59 F. W. Walling
1959-60 A. R. Brown
1960-61 A. G. Witts
1961-63 H. L. Burbidge
1963-65 F. W. Walling
1965-67 I. M. Franklin
1967-69 A H Turner

Past Chairman

1969-71 T A Tomkins
1971-73 P. J. Dunlop
1973-75 A. J. Hanna
1975-77 J. L. Brettell
1977-79 H. A. Hogge
1979-81 J. L. Brettell
1981-83 P. F. Chalke
1983-85 P. J. Dunlop
1985-87 T. Doubtfire
1987-89 P. J. Dunlop
1989-91 J. L. Brettell
1991-93 B. Wakling
1993-95 S. Gifford Mead
1995-97 J. Debnam
1997-00 D. Savage
2000-02 R Brettell
2002-04 R Brettell
2004-06 R Brettell
2006-08 P B Nutting

2008 – 2014 R. Brettell,
2015 – present P.B.Nutting

Presidents Message

I have been actively involved in the wood turning industry for some 80 years and became a member of the British Wood Turners Association in 1958.

Globalisation and the breakdown of political barriers mean that cheaper imported products have had a marked effect on the industry. There are many factors to be considered by those people sourcing turned wood components other than price alone and I would urge them to consider the many advantages of buying from a member of the Association when deciding where to source their requirements.

It pleases me that against the background of the challenges faced today by wood turners in the UK the Association continues to grow and enjoys the support of the members. I am sure that both the long standing members and the new ones will gain a great deal as a result of the increased strength.

I recommend membership to all commercial wood turners, however large or small their business may be. Membership of the Association proved to be a great help to my company in the past.