Rycotewood Association

Welcome to the website of the Rycotewood Association!

The Rycotewood Association exists to support and encourage contact between ex-students of Rycotewood College (including Rycotewood Furniture Centre, Oxford OCVC), as well as other interested parties.

It fosters an exchange of information between ex-students, students and staff of Rycotewood. Linking trained skilled craftspeople with employers. Members promote the benefits of the college to potential students whilst the students and staff see membership of the association as a source of guidance and the provision of access to a database of contacts and experience.

With over 70 years of training bespoke furniure designer/makers and engineers and an international networking there are many benefits to becoming a member of the association

The founding priniciples of Rycotewood (from the transcripts of Cecil Michaelis)

Since the first world war industry has become more and more standardised and comparison unskilled labour, with the help of machinery, has replaced the former craftsman and his apprentices, who were proud of maintaining the high standard of old traditions, and creating new ones. Standardisation will not have craftsmen to refresh its production. This situation would not arise if people realised that craftmen and factories do not work in oppoisition to one another. The factory produces, the craftsman's primary function is to create, hand in hand, together.

Therefore Cecil Michaelis founded a training school in 1938, he formed a trust with himself and Mr E Bullock as trustees to administer and direct its affairs. The Trust, registered as Rycotewood Trust, had a guaranteed income for 8 years. The trustees have decided to train boys to be cabinetmakers, as they believed that the lack of young skilled men will prove fatal to the furniture trade.

You can still train to be a Rycotewood furniture designer/maker

The furniture training is now in Oxford. It is situated within Oxford and Cherwell Valley College and called the Rycotewood Furniture Centre.

For more information, please click here.

You can also still train to be an Engineer

Click here to see which courses are available at the Oxford and Cherwell Valley College (Oxford campus).