James called upon for castle duty

Carpenter and furniture-maker James Archer has been commissioned by English Heritage to make objects for castles.
Carpenter and furniture-maker James Archer has been commissioned by English Heritage to make objects for castles.
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A CRAFTSMAN is helping rebuild the past at a castle in Dorset.

James Archer, from Barby, is a bespoke furniture maker and is in the middle of creating 15 authentic pieces for the guard room at Portland Castle, having been commissioned by English Heritage.

Mr Archer said: “It’s a room with several purposes. It was where the castle’s guards would rest but also where food was being prepared. Because of this mix of items I’ve been asked to build a range of pieces from trestle tables and stools to spice boxes and chopping blocks.”

Portland Castle was one of Henry VIII’s coastal forts, built to defend against the threat of invasions from France and Spain.

It was also used more recently in the two World Wars.