Companions at Emmaus Norfolk & Waveney have been getting creative and learning new skills thanks to the installation of a blacksmith’s forge at our site on the former Old Hallows Convent in Ditchingham.

Over the past week many of the people living within the Emmaus community have been working with leading metal sculptor Leigh Dyer to produce a sculpture that will go on display in the orchard.  The installation of the forge and the project with Leigh has been funded by donations from supporters and is also supported by Arts Council England.

It is hoped that the sculpture that has been designed and created by the Emmaus team will feature in the Raveningham Sculpture Trail 2021.

Talking about the project, Cecile Roberts, Chief Executive of Emmaus Norfolk & Waveney, said:

“We are delighted to have Leigh here with us at Emmaus Norfolk & Waveney to create a completely unique piece of artwork. He is an incredibly talented artist so it’s a real honour to be working with him on this project. I’m excited to see what he and the team here create, and it will go on display in our orchard for everyone to enjoy and admire when they come to visit our shop and café.”

This project is not just about creating a beautiful piece of art; Emmaus Norfolk & Waveney provides those facing homelessness or social exclusion with a home for as long as needed and also the opportunity of meaningful work in a social enterprise. This includes working in the charity’s three shops in Ditchingham, Bungay and Norwich, and upcycling donated items is a big part of this.

This new forge will give the Emmaus companions the ability to upcycle some of the metal items that are donated to the charity, along with creating new, bespoke items which will be sold in the shops.

Emmaus Norfolk & Waveney Forge Project

Completed Sculpture
Emmaus CEO Cecile Roberts and Trustee Nat Sharley
Companion Paul working in the forge
Finished sculpture