Robert Tompson also known as ‘the Mouseman’ was perhaps the most famous resident of Kilburn – a little picturesque village in the Hambleton Hills. On a clear day you can see the White Horse near to Sutton Bank as it overlooks the village in the valley below.
Tompson was inspired by the arts and crafts movement to create his distinctive furniture with small mice carved somewhere upon it. All the pieces are made from seasoned Yorkshire oak and you can see great piles of it all around the visitors centre.
Kilburn itself is a quiet rural place and the Mouseman furniture is still made here today by the descendants of Robert Tompson passing on the skills of carpentry. The main showroom across the street from the visitors centre was actually once Robert Tompsons home, make sure you look at it from the street side to take in the beautiful hum of busy bees in the lavender garden.
Mouseman furniture can be found in the village church and also in the pub The Foresters Arms next-door to the showroom. It’s a great pub to drop in for a shandy with many unusual pieces such as the marbled oak tables.
You’ll even find a little piece of the Mouseman in our studio as the stool I sit on to make all my pots is one of the light oak milking stools. Unfortunately our little mouse often gets covered in clay! As a little tribute to his beautiful work you can often find mouse mugs or mouse bowls over in the shop.