We are starting work on a handmade wooden rolling press to be part of The Story of Books collection. This will be a working historical reconstruction of a Dutch press from the 17th century and will be based on the etching in The Book of Trades by Jan Luyken, printed in 1694.

Designing and building the press using hand tools will provide new knowledge about these once ubiquitous but now very rare presses. Once completed, visitors will be able to gain hands on experience printing etchings in this centuries old tradition. We also plan to offer workshops in etching and engraving.

Roger Gaskell, an expert on book illustration and printing will lead the project. Roger has recently completed a replica press for the Rare Book School in Virginia.

rolling press luyken

Be involved

We are looking for volunteer woodworkers of all skill levels to build the press using traditional hand tools. Whether you are an experienced craftsperson, or a keen DIYer or just want to come along and lend a hand and learn some skills please get in touch. All ages welcome. We will also be looking for supplies of local hardwood such as oak, ash and beech.

Find out more

Please email for more details or to register your interest.