Royal approval for arrowsmith and ironmonger

Hector Cole, forger of historic arrowheads, at work.
Hector Cole, forger of historic arrowheads, at work.

A former Osbournby man has been named in The Queen’s New Year Honours for his role as a master arrowsmith and archaeological ironworker.

Hector Cole has been made a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) for services to heritage crafts, it was announced last Tuesday.

Osbournby-born Mr Cole began his career in forging at the age of four, pumping the bellows at the village blacksmith’s.

He said: “I was just absolutely fascinated by the place.”

Hector’s craft would develop alongside a career in education, with him spending his first year in the profession teaching metalwork at Ruskington Secondary Modern School.

His work in forging can be seen in The Royal Armouries, The Mary Rose Museum and The Museum of London.

He has also produced pieces for members of the Royal Family including the gates and rail for Prince Charles’s Highgrove House and has appeared on TV shows such as Time Team.

Hector, who lives in Wiltshire but still has family in the Sleaford area, said he hoped the award would raise the profile of the work of craftsmen and women.

He said he was ‘very surprised’ to be named in the New Year Honours.

“I had no idea at all,” he said.