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Timothy (Tim) Stead


1952 - 2000

Furniture designer, wood sculptor and conservationist. Born in Cheshire (England), Stead studied fine art at Trent Polytechnic (1974) and at the Glasgow School of Art (1975). He settled in the Scottish Borders in 1980, first at Harestanes, where he was a founder of the Woodschool which enables young craftsmen to develop wood-working skills, and later at Blainslie where he set up his own workshop.

His work includes the furniture in Cafe Gandolfi in Glasgow (1979), a throne used by Pope John Paul II during his visit to Scotland in 1981, the North Sea Oil Industries Memorial Chapel in St. Nicholas' Kirk in Aberdeen (1989) and the Peephole in the Gallery of Modern Art (1996). Stead also contributed to the Millennium Clock in the Royal Museum in Edinburgh. He was a founder of the Borders Forest Trust and played a leading role in the Millennium Forest project, which created Community Woodlands throughout Scotland.

In 2000, shortly before his early death, he was awarded an MBE. He lies buried at Wooplaw Wood. His widow continues his work and manages the Tim Stead Workshop at Blainslie. A retrospective exhibition of his work was held in the Royal Botanic Gardens, Edinburgh, in 2005.


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