Thursday, March 5, 2020

News: Enterprising craftsman at the sharp end of self-employment


A specialist cutler is forging a new career path by establishing a new knife retail business in Rotherham called Dearne Forge.

Selling unique one-of-a-kind knives, the business provides bespoke products that are made to customers exact requirements from its workshop in Wath upon Dearne.

Having a background in the Royal Marines and as a scout leader, Kevin Sandham-Mulholland began his metalwork career as a hobby three years ago, he now specialises in the production of bush craft knives, forging the blade from Sheffield steel and hand-crafting the handle and leather scabbard.

Receiving kickstart grant funding from UKSE, Dearne Forge has been able to purchase a professional grinder and hand-tools that will mean it can better refine products.

The service currently includes the delivery of products in a personalised wooden box to match the knife and add to the high-quality feel of the items.


UKSE was launched in 1975 to support the economic development of steel industry areas. It operates a Kickstart Fund for new start businesses and  also provides loan and equity finance of up to £1m to existing companies which are growing, particularly those creating jobs.

Kevin Sandham-Mulholland, founder of Dearne Forge (pictured), said: "Since setting-up the business I have had numerous requests from customers from throughout the Yorkshire region, I even got asked to produce a hand-crafted meat cleaver for a wedding present. – Don't worry they are both chefs!

"I would like to thank UKSE for providing me with valuable equipment that will allow the business to produce products more efficiently and which will hopefully aid me in my ambitions to start stocking the products in independent shops in the local area."

Alan Stanley at UKSE, added: "It's great to see the launch of Dearne Forge, a business that has locally sourced steel at the heart of its business and providing top-quality items that have a personal touch

"I hope the venture continues in its recent success and continues to grow in the next few years."

Dearne Forge Facebook page
UKSE website

Images: UKSE


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