Some customers might remember the time when I only had room in the workshop for one family at a time, so I provided umbrellas for waiting customers to use in wet weather! Cambridge was an influential place in the history of period performance in the 1980s.
Whilst I was making period clarinets and basset clarinets in Felton street, within a quarter mile radius we had Christopher Hogwood (conductor), Trevor Beckerleg (harpsichord maker), Mark Stephenson (harpsichord maker), Anna Brock (violin maker), Juliet Barker (violin maker) and Nick Shackleton (collector and promoter of period performance).
We were also helped by other local artisans like Tania James (silversmith), John Nightingale (silver and leatherworker) and Andrew Houston (professional photographer). Mark Stephenson not only made harpsichords, but hosted wonderful evenings of music including the most memorable evening of Mitzi Meyerson (Harpsichord) playing in his candlelit workshop.
So, as staff increased and more space was needed, we moved in the early 1990’s to Homerton Street. This odd mixture of workshop and retail shop served us well until we moved to our present premises in Russell Street, off Hills Road Cambridge. This gave our customers easy access to the shop by road, by rail or on foot.
2000 to present day
The Russell Street shop slowly filled to bursting as demand
has increased, prompting a redesign to the shop in July 2004.
Local authority contracts, international musicians and our
all-important local, young and budding musicians all need
time and attention, which is provided by our increasing number
of excellent staff. In 2006 we took the opportunity to expand
into 105 Russell Street.
Following a very successful management development program
that Daniel Bangham and Tim Taylor took part in at Cranfield
University in 2009, under the auspices of
Burke and Marihelen Esam the shop was redesigned
again in 2010 and other improvements to customer services
were introduced. The three well designed, light and generously
sized rooms provide an acoustic barrier to the rest of the
shop without loosing contact with our helpful and attentive
The Cranfield program also triggered Daniel to get back to
his roots as an instrument maker and is currently developing
a "not for profit" education center for woodwind
instrument making. Cambridge
Woodwind makers. The workshop will be within the
foundation arts center at Bury Farm Stapleford,
just outside Cambridge. This new workshop will include a visitors
center where organised groups and members of the public will
be able to watch and learn about instrument making by watching
oboes and clarinets being made by hand from the raw materials.
Using educational ideas from established teaching workshops
such as The Cambridge Violin Workshop in Hartington Grove
Cambridge. The new workshop will provide hands on courses
for the amateur and professional artisans and specialist tutors
will include Tim Cranmore making recorders, Daniel Bangham
woodwind repairs and others.
In 2011 Daniel Bangham has been taking part in a new BBC
4 program to be screened in the autumn of 2011 called Scrapheap
orchestra. Daniel along with 8 other makers have
been commissioned to make instruments that sound like modern
orchestral instruments but out of scrap materials.........