Find out about: Finch Foundry
The last working water-powered forge in the country nestles in the middle of Stickelpath village on the edge of Dartmoor, near Okehampton. During lively demonstrations see and hear the large water wheel and tilt hammers in action. Demonstrations of the machinery every hour.
Discover life as an apprentice at the Foundry in the upper gallery and try and guess what all the different tools were used for in the Carpenters shop. Take a peek at Tom Pearse’s summerhouse of Widecombe Fair fame (learn the rhyme too!).
Shop and tearoom.
Shop and small tearoom on site. Shop sells a range of local arts and crafts items. The cafe serves hot and cold drinks, light lunches and afternoon cakes.
Large water powered, overhead belt driven, upright mechanical hammer.
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The collection at Finch Foundry includes a wide variety of tools manufactured at the foundry during its history. It also includes items sold by the Finch Brothers which illustrates the diversity of their business. As a water powered working forge, the collection includes the machinery which can be seen in action during opening hours.
Staff hook blade
The staff hook is designed to be hafted on to a long handle and used in a sweeping action similar to that of a scythe. Its primary use would be to clear undergrowth such as briar. To assist in this sweeping type action the handle/socket of the tool is slightly offset to facilitate this type of action. The tool is made by forging the plate bar into a semicircular shape then gradually hammering the blade down to an edge, whereby grinding and sharpening can be achieved. The socket is formed simply by folding to accommodate a handle. This example is stamped with the Finch Bro's logo. Features in the Finch Bro's catalogue, item no. 13.
Thatcher's shearing hook
The shearing hook used primarily for trimming thatch, the handle is set above the blade to allow precise action. This example is stamped with the Finch Bro's name. Features in the Finch Bro's Catalogue.
Spring-loaded, scissor-action mole trap, consists of two fork-like halves which are connected on a central pivot. A pressure ring is placed in the middle of the opened forks; when the mole disturbs the pressure ring while moving through its tunnel, the jaws snap shut, grasping the mole. The traps are set in mole run. They are made by a company called 'Defiance', and might have been bought for resale through Finch Foundry.
Admission & Prices
National Trust members free
Open 16 March - 3 November, every day 11am-5pm.
Okehampton, DEVON EX20 2NW