Andrew Ziminski Stone Carving - Minerva Stone Conservation Frome

Stone carving, barbecues and beer

Every now and again the team down tools in our hot workshop and head off to do something completely different together. In June we spent the day stone carving in the shade of a huge sycamore tree in a garden oasis in Frome under the tuition of our friend Andrew Ziminski of Minerva Stone. Andrew is a master craftsman of his trade, specialising in the repair and conservation of historic buildings and author of ‘The Stonemason: A History of Building Britain (which we highly recommend.)

We were all tasked with carving the same Anglo-Saxon stone knot design copied from a local historic church. Stone carving is a truly mindful process, we were all quickly and completely absorbed in the task to the background ‘chip, chip, chip’ rhythm of our tools and birdsong. We stopped for a reviving barbecue lunch with meats supplied by Olly’s family farm, and with plentiful cold beers and mugs of tea the day absolutely shot past. Fascinatingly, we all started with the same size blocks of limestone – sourced from the Box Tunnel near Bath – and using the same tools, copying the same design… ended up with ten completely unique variations on a theme.

It was such a brilliant day, we all really enjoyed it. Thank you Andrew for looking after us all so well and giving us the chance to try something new, we highly recommend this as a fun day out and are looking forward to doing it again one day.