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The crook maker

In search of the ancient methods of producing the renowned Scottish shepherd’s crook. Craftsman Arthur Dent showed us the secrets of the trade in his small workshop.

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The crook maker

In the winter ADV campaign these typical Scottish shepherds’ crooks appeared as stage props. In order to understand their origins, the PT team contacted Arthur Dent, a crookmaker from the small town of Doune, north of Glasgow, and asked him to tell us all about his famous crooks. This is an ancient craft that traditionally employs local materials. It starts with choosing the most suitable wood, walnut or chestnut, and then selecting the horn from native Scottish rams.

Our craftsman, Arthur Dent, generously welcomed us to his small workshop and showed us all the steps in the process. His wife Joan assists him in shaping the horns (the most practical part of the crook, used to catch the sheep by their back legs).  The head of the stick is decorated with ivory or coloured carvings of animals. These can be considered designer objects.

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“Style and tradition
of Scottish Highlanders.”

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