CHRISTMAS OFFER Subscribe to Surrey Life today CLICK HERE

Stonecarving in Windlesham with Simon Keeley - Surrey Creations

PUBLISHED: 10:48 15 February 2016 | UPDATED: 10:06 07 June 2016

Simon hard at work at his Windlesham studio

Simon hard at work at his Windlesham studio

Philip Traill

With his award-winning skills and infectious enthusiasm, it’s no surprise that Windlesham-based stone carver Simon Keeley is much in demand. Here he reveals the tricks of his trade

Originally published in Surrey Life magazine February 2016

***

Back in his 20s, a passion for art and the BBC Antiques Roadshow led Simon Keeley to Lincoln Art College to study conservation and restoration. Bowled over by the carvings in the city’s cathedral, he later went on to tackle advanced stone masonry at York Technical College.

“When I was holding my mallet and chisel and made my first contact with the stone, it was love at first chip,” laughs the Windlesham-based stone carver. “It was also a reconnection to my great grandfather, who was a master memorial mason.”

Since then, he’s never looked back and, over the last 20 years, has been commissioned to work on many great buildings and gardens around Europe.

“I still find it amazing that I can take a block of stone and, with traditional techniques, create a magnificent three-dimensional stone carving,” he says. “These stone carvings will continue to exist way beyond the lives of my great grandchildren.”

From work on Westminster Abbey to a highly-praised commission for Harley Street, his creations come in all shapes and sizes – the latest being a large-scale chess piece, carved in Portland limestone, and delivered to a private art collector in Lincolnshire.

We wouldn’t be surprised if viewers of the Antiques Roadshow are discussing Simon Keeley originals in a hundred years’ time…



For more on Simon Keeley, visit simonkeeley.co.uk

***

Need to know:

Surrey Creations is a series by local photographer, Philip Traill, exploring people in their work environment, capturing the characters and what they do in a single image. Contact Philip at philip@traillphotography.com

***

The Surrey Creations series:

Making cheese with Norbury Blue

Soul music from South Godstone’s Pilgrim Harps

Gin is just the tonic from Silent Pool Distillers

The art of the ironmonger with Haslemere’s Oliver Russell

Surrey Hills Brewery creates beer at the heart of a vineyard

Traditional woodwork and musical instruments from Bramley’s Green Wood Works

Making motoring icons with GRE Classics in Lower Kingswood

On the tiles with Hambledon’s Froyle Tiles

On a plate with Grayshott Stoneware

Ahead of the curve with Farnham’s Beverley Edmondson Millinery

Through the looking glass with West Horsley artist Adam Aaronson

 

 

More from Surrey Life

Yesterday, 16:06

Education expert Dr Ryan Hinchey, Coordinator of College Counselling at ACS International School, with campuses in Cobham, Egham and Hillingdon, answers your questions

Read more
Yesterday, 11:34

Surrounded by reservoirs and located on the banks of the famous river from which it takes its name, Staines-upon-Thames (as it is now called) is a town working to reshape its future and celebrate its picturesque riverside setting

Read more
Mon, 16:30

She may have recently moved to the seaside, but Surrey still holds a uniquely “precious” place in the heart of legendary children’s author Dame Jacqueline Wilson – not to mention the crucial role the county played in bringing everyone’s favourite and newly-returning feisty foster-kid to life

Read more
Mon, 11:59

Great things to do in Surrey this weekend (23, 24 and 25 November): art exhibitions, walks, concerts, theatre, places to visit and other events and ideas.

Read more
Thursday, November 15, 2018

Surrey is full of secret hideaways and hidden gems. Slades Farm on the Wintershall Estate is definitely one of them

Read more
Wednesday, November 14, 2018

The new hotel is set to open in spring 2019 and will be located in the heart of the vineyard, offering sweeping views over the North Downs Way.

Read more
Tuesday, November 13, 2018

From Santa’s Grottos, to Victorian Christmas markets and late-night shopping, we’ve covered what’s on in Surrey this season

Read more
Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Whether you're looking for fine dining, pub grub or exotic dishes, eating out in Surrey has something for everyone. Here's our guide to the best local restaurants and pubs

Read more
Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Having bloomed in Brighton’s restaurant scene over the past decade, The Chilli Pickle opened its second site in Guildford this summer

Read more
Monday, November 12, 2018

Historic Royal Palaces and IMG have announced that Kylie Minogue is the first headliner confirmed for Hampton Court Palace Festival 2019. These will be her only London shows of summer 2019. Here’s how you can get tickets

Read more
Monday, November 12, 2018

Enjoy this linear rail to ramble section of the Thames Down Link route taking the short train-ride from Box Hill & Westhumble to Ashtead before walking back

Read more
Tuesday, November 6, 2018

It’s that time of year when our beautiful countryside is alight with the colours of autumn. Here, we pick out some of her favourite spots to enjoy the seasonal splendour – as well as some perfect places for a post-walk refresher

Read more
Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Found on the stretch of the River Thames between Weybridge and East Molesey, Sunbury-on-Thames is blessed with a village feel where it meets the water. From antique hunts to the joys of river life, here are a few of our favourite reasons to visit

Read more
Monday, November 5, 2018

Verity & Violet are Loui and Jess – a singing duo from Surrey who specialise in blending vintage classics with modern favourites. The two have achieved success in the capital, but are now hoping to attract an audience closer to home

Read more

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Topics of Interest


Follow us on Twitter


Like us on Facebook

Subscribe or buy a mag today

subscription ad

Local Business Directory

Property Search