9th October 2017

Cockpit Arts, the award winning social enterprise and business incubator for craftspeople, is delighted to announce the opening of a new Leather Hub at its Deptford, SE8 centre, generously supported by funds from The Leathersellers’ Company Charitable Fund.

The Leather Hub was formally opened by Antony Barrow, Master of the Leathersellers’ Company on 5 October and Cockpit Arts based leather craftsman Charlie Laurie demonstrated the equipment purchased. The Leather Hub is equipped with machinery to assist leather craftspeople, including a splitter, a skiving machine, a guillotine, clicking press and a hot foil blocking machine.  The Leather Hub will be accessible to all Cockpit Arts based makers including those currently on the Cockpit Arts / Leathersellers’ Award.

Cockpit Arts has been working in partnership with The Leathersellers’ Company since 2012 and the Company generously supports Leather Awards on an annual basis to individual leatherworkers. Cockpit Arts was awarded a capital grant to create the Leather Hub to better meet the needs of Awardees, and advice about the equipment was provided by Bill Amberg, one of the most respected names in contemporary British leathercraft and a Trustee of Cockpit Arts.

“The Leather Hub has played a massive part in the development of my work since we have had the new machinery. I have been able to take on larger orders and have a much quicker turnaround date. The clicking press has helped massively in the cutting process of my work. Before the new press was installed, I was having to cut all the leather by hand making it a very long drawn out process whereas now it takes me much less time. The splitting machine also has helped tremendously. Previously I was having to trek across London to use a machine that someone kindly let me borrow. This would take out a day out of my week so now having one in the studios has had a great effect on my production time.”
Charlie Laurie, Cockpit Arts / The Leathersellers’ Awardee 2016

“As founders of the Leathersellers’ technical college in Bermondsey in 1909, we are extremely proud to once again be supporting the development of leather skills and entrepreneurship in South London through Cockpit Arts” 
Geoff Russell-Jones
Charities & Education Officer, The Leathersellers’ Company