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Arts & crafts experiences

Blacksmith at Ryedale Folk MuseumBlacksmith at Ryedale Folk Museum

For all would-be creatives out there, those looking to improve your artistic techniques or if you'd like to pick up a traditional craft skill, then take a look at these suggestions.

  • Award winning artist David Curtis regularly works en plein air at Staithes and he is just one of the guest teachers on a Staithes Art School residential painting weekend run by Staithes Gallery throughout the summer and autumn. Or join wildlife and nature artist Robert Parkin on one of his workshops held at the Old Coastguard Station.
  • Shandy Hall in Coxwold is the venue for regular workshops and courses that build on this historic hive of creativity. Expect something a bit different, from marbling to blacksmithing, to literary skills of course.
  • Both the Joe Cornish Gallery in Northallerton and The Workshop for the Would-be Creative in Ebberston, near Scarborough offer a wide range of traditional and contemporary craft classes and workshops, with guest tutors and leaders. From bookbinding, painting furniture and pottery to photography, felting and drawing, you're sure to find something of interest.
  • Cober Hill on the North York Moors Coast, just north of Scarborough, offers a range of themed breaks, including art holidays with tutoring provided by professional artist Robert Dutton. We're also hosting various craft and painting workshops in the Inspired by... gallery with artists including James McGairy throughout the year.
  • Ryedale Folk Museum keeps alive bygone crafts and rural trades like drystone walling, blacksmithing, rag-rugging, and glass decorating. Volunteers present the living, working experience of previous generations, whether in Tudor mansion or 1950s village shop, and they freely share their expertise during craft demonstrations, workshops and special seasonal classes. There’s something hugely satisfying about taking home something you’ve made – from horseshoe to rag-rug wreath – and it connects you to the past in a way that a straightforward visit to a regular museum never can.
  • Howsham Mill is another great place where you can learn new skills in awe-inspiring surroundings. From papermaking to bookmaking, wood carving and wire work sculpture, painting and mosaic workshops, you're bound to find something that interests you.

Find more creative workshops on the Yorkshire Treasures website, from photography to jewellery making and even circus skills.