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© Jennifer Charlton Photography
© Jennifer Charlton Photography
© The Marchmont Workshop
© The Marchmont Workshop
© The Marchmont Workshop

Sam Cooper & Richard Platt

  • The Marchmont Workshop
  • Chair maker
  • Greenlaw, United Kingdom
  • Rising Star
Sam Cooper & Richard Platt Chair maker
Monday to Friday 09:00 - 17:00
+44 (0)7969689350
© The Marchmont Workshop

The custodians of traditional ladderback chairs

  • • Sam and Richard employ traditional designs and processes
  • • They have set up a workshop making historic rush seated ladderback chairs
  • • They are located on the Marchmont Estate in the Scottish Borders

In 2020, Sam Cooper and Richard Platt had the opportunity to set up a traditional rush seated chairmaking workshop located on the Marchmont Estate, in the heart of the Scottish Borders, thanks to the commitment and financial support of entrepreneur and arts-and-crafts patron Hugo Burge together with the Heritage Crafts Association. The workshop itself is brand new but their craft is traditional in terms of designs, processes and methods. The two artisans learnt everything about the craft directly from Lawrence Neal, the protagonist of “The Chairmaker” film and sole custodian of the secrets handed down by the fathers of the traditional rush seated ladderback chairs – Philip Clisset and Ernest Gimson – which are still popular in the country.

Read the full interview


  • © The Marchmont Workshop
  • © The Marchmont Workshop
  • © The Marchmont Workshop
  • © The Marchmont Workshop
Photo: © The Marchmont Workshop
The Ledbury armchair

A rush seated frame chair, originally designed by Ernest Gimson in 1906. One of the spindleback designs, featuring three delicately turned spindles, steam bent rails and legs, and a unique finial atop the back legs. It also features turned arm supports that pass through the woven rush seat. All parts are sawn and turned from green wood using traditional techniques.

Length 43 cm
Width 56 cm
Height 90 cm

Photo: © The Marchmont Workshop
The Clissett armchair

A one off Clissett armchair produced for the QESTCraft Anniversary Auction. The Clissett is a ladderback frame chair originally designed by Phillip Clissett, although modified by Ernest Gimson. The chair is made from locally sourced ash that is turned green and steam bent to shape before being assembled with mortise and tenon joinery. This particular chair was given a charcoal painted finish and 23.5k gilded finials.

Length 43 cm
Width 58.5 cm
Height 91.5 cm

Photo: © The Marchmont Workshop
The Bedales side chair

The Bedales chair, named after Bedales School, was designed by Ernest Gimson in 1906. Constructed from locally sourced greenwood, assembled using mortise and tenon joinery, the Bedales chair features a uniform three slat ladder-back design with turned and steam bent legs – a final design unique to our chairs. Complete with a woven rush seat.

Length 41 cm
Width 46 cm
Height 97 cm

Photo: © The Marchmont Workshop
The Gimson round table

A round dining table, designed by the Marchmont Workshop, but inspired by Ernest Gimson and the Arts and Crafts movement. The table is constructed from English Oak using traditional pegged mortise and tenon joinery and has an oiled finish. Featuring hand planed octagonal supports, the top is attached to the base by a long sliding dovetail joint.

Height 76 cm
Diameter 144 cm

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