Westham founder of Sussex Guild receives honour for his services to craftspeople
A 91-year-old Westham man who brought the crafting community together has been celebrated in the Queen's Birthday Honours list.
Samuel James Fanaroff has been granted a British Empire Medal (BEM) for his services to craftspeople in Sussex after he set up The Sussex Guild 50 years ago.
He said, “It came out the blue, I had no idea.
“We were all surprised. You do your work and never think in terms of my reward.”
An ethos of co-operation, mutual aid and inclusivity were his reasons for establishing the organisation.
Mr Fanaroff, who spent decades chairing meetings, organising events, and counselling his peers, said, “When I formed the guild I was a practising craftsman, the object was facilitating our survival.
“What we attempted to do was create not just a trade association but a community of craftsmen, that was the ethos, with a concern for the individual.
“So many people have benefitted from its existence, financially and socially. I’m quite proud of some of the things I did.”
Mr Fanaroff’s works have been exhibited at The Society of Designer Craftsmen on numerous occasions.
One of his favourite pieces is a sculpture called The Hollow Men, inspired by a poem by T S Eliot.