David returns to set up furniture business in Ribble Valley

David Thornber along with employees Shaun Hobkirk and Olly Longdon.
David Thornber along with employees Shaun Hobkirk and Olly Longdon.

Craftsman David Thornber has returned to his native Ribble Valley, bringing his furniture-making business with him.

David (25), was brought up in Chatburn and was educated at the village school and Ribblesdale High School before leaving the area to study at the University of Southampton.

He was intending to make his career in sport and PE, but changed direction because of his lifelong interest in woodworking.

He set up his own business, David Thornber Handmade Furniture, in Hampshire, and made a success of it selling his solid pine country furniture on ebay.

Now David and his wife Rebecca, a trainee GP, are about to start a family, with a baby due at the end of this month, and decided to move north to be nearer David’s family in the Ribble Valley. They have moved into their new home in Old Row.

David said: “I’d always been interested in woodwork and I’ve always been good at do-it-yourself. I was restoring some old furniture for our house, then I went on to make some of my own... and it started from there.”

“I took advice from other furniture makers and I was creating the kind of furniture we loved – solid wood and highly personalised.”

Friends asked him to make bespoke furniture for them, and David started the company
in 2012. He sells online and 
directly to the public, cutting out the middle man to keep prices down.

Now based at Primrose Mill, Clitheroe, David is employing a skilled furniture maker and an apprentice, and believes his company has the potential to create more local jobs in future.

“We are a small company with a big vision. One of our core values is that our company will be a great place to work,” says David.