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The Corporation

Posted: 10/12/18

Joinery students give piano new lease of life

From the tinkling of the ivories to the clinking of glasses, joinery students at West Nottinghamshire College have used their wood-skills to transform an everyday item.

  • Left to right Reece Pridmore, Daniel Stainwright, Ian Bradford, Jason Dent and Joel Reast
  • The stripping down of the piano
  • Preparing new wood for the piano
  • Students working on the internals of the instrument to renovate it

Entry-level students on the carpentry and joinery course have given a piano a new lease of life thanks to the Reloved project launched by tutors and technicians, while enhancing their own workshop skills.

Last academic year, the joinery department were given an old piano which was beyond repair to be played again. So from its home in a Southwell pub, it was brought into the joinery workshop where a plan was born.

Between tutor Reece Pridmore, technician Ian Bradford and the students, and after some internet research, the plan was to turn the piano into a mini bar, putting all of the new-found joinery skills into practise and stretching their creative imaginations.

Ian said: “The first task was to strip the piano down and get rid of the strings which was hard work, but everyone got stuck in to the job.

“This project has been great for helping students who are ahead of their classwork, to stay focussed on something different and use the skills they already have, turning something into a work of art.

“It will now go on display in the reception area and we’re hoping to sell it. It would make great feature in someone’s home or indeed in a bar.”

Student Daniel Stainwright, who helped to lead the project, said: “I’ve really enjoyed working on the piano. Quite a few of us students have worked on this and it’s been so interesting. In between classwork it’s taken about three months to get it to the finished product.

“Another older piano, which is about 100-years-old has since been donated so we’re getting our ideas together what we could do with this now.”

Ian added: “The Reloved project will continue in the joinery department, helping to turn everyday wooden artefacts and furniture into something different and the students will also get to put their marketing and sales hats on to sell the items. We’re really enjoying this new venture.”