New Chiswell Green forge – St Albans blacksmith!

Hello! The new forge at Chiswell Green, St Albans is nearly ready to host some hot metal hammering!

Petefire Artist Blacksmith, Chiswell Green, St Albans, Herts, England

Here’s the rustically painted Petefire logo on one of the 4 large doors that’ll be open on summer days, looking out over the lake to Hertfordshire countryside.

Got a metalwork / blacksmith enquiry?

Contact us on, 01923 350596, John 0777 999 1551 or Peter 07854 363630.

Petefire Artist Blacksmith forge at Chiswell Green, St Albans, Herts, England

My connections are with Watford – that’s where I spent my first years until I was 13, we then moved to Abbots Langley. Until spring 2020 my forge was in Bushey, Herts. The new forge is in Chiswell Green – on the outskirts of St Albans, so I’ll be getting to know St Albans a bit more.

We keen to develop local links

We’re keen to make connections with the local community, and want to be identified as a Chiswell Green business. We’ll also be visiting local businesses over the next for weeks to introduce the forge.

Over time we would like Chiswell Green people to become proud that there’s a blacksmith forge in their area.

My work comes from Watford, Hemel Hempstead and St Albans and the surrounding towns and villages.

In the wider area, it also comes from south west Herts, Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire and north London.

I’m happy to work for people and businesses from anywhere.

I’m proud to now be a St Albans blacksmith! I’m not forgetting Watford & Hemel Hempstead.

You can contact me with enquiries, or to make appointment. Here’s the Petefire Artist Blacksmith contact page.

Petefire forge location

Hanrox Meadows
Blunts Lane
Chiswell Green

Forging Experience questions

We’ve updated our Blacksmith Forging Experience questions page.

Paul’s blacksmith forging experience questions

It’s always a good idea to check what’s on your website – we’ve given our Forging Experience questions page a refresh. This is in response to the questions that are regularly asked. We’re also very happy for people to contact us on email, by phone and on social media.

Have you got a question that you think we should add to our page? We’d love to hear from you, you can also contact us with questions.

Forged in Fire fan in your family?

Have you been looking for a forging experience for a family member, who’s a bit obsessed with Forged in Fire?

Petefire Artist Blacksmith, Experience Days – for Forged in Fire UK fans

If your family member is a Forged in Fire UK fan, the Petefire Blacksmith Forging Experiences could make a great gift for a family member. They happen in Abbots Langley, next to the Harry Potter Studio, where the films were shot and the Harry Potter experiences happen.

Ready to surprise someone special?
Get your Blacksmith Forging Experience voucher here.

We have experiences for one person, two people and three people. We’re also happy to hear from you if you would like to bring a group along.

Blacksmith forging Experience prices are:

You could be very popular with a Forged in Fire UK fan, if you buy a Blacksmith Forging Experience for a family member or friend.

  • 1 person £120
  • 2 people £205
  • 3 people £275

Neuroscience collaboration

Hi everyone! My name is Danbee Kim, and I’m a neuroscientist and teacher.

I recently collaborated with Petefire Artist Blacksmith to explore the neuroscience of touch and proprioception as used by artists and crafters, such as blacksmiths, circus performers, and architectural model makers in an event called Dear Neuroscience.

Danbee Kim, neuroscientist and teacher.

The First VIRS book title graphic

I also recently wrote The First VIRS, a science fiction graphic novel that combines current topics in science and technology with a speculation on how the next 100 years might play out. I’ve been a lifelong fan and reader of comics myself, and now I’m hoping to use comics to make science and technology more fun and accessible to everyone, especially for audiences that are currently underserved by traditional forms of science communication.

You can read the chapter 1 teaser for The First VIRS online, or watch our promo video for the project.

If you are also a fan of comics, or interested in connecting science and technology with arts and crafts, please consider making a donation when we launch our Kickstarter campaign on Tuesday, September 24! Your contribution will help us pay our amazing artists and produce nicely-bound, colour-printed physical copies of the graphic novel.

The First VIRS book title graphic
The First VIRS – Chapter 2: Where thunder goes when it dies
The First VIRS book title graphic
The First VIRS graphic novel, Diagram 1: Major neural and glial cell types
The First VIRS book graphics
The First VIRS book graphics
The First VIRS book graphics
The First VIRS book graphics – Chapter 1: Calm before the storm

I hope that together, we can take another step towards making scientific research more open and accessible to everyone. Thanks so much for reading!

…here’s the click-through to the Kickstarter campaign for The First VIRS, science fiction graphic novel website link again!

Watford’s Armistice Day fire beacon

Petefire Artist Blacksmith, Watford 100th Anniversary fire beacon

Smoke, sparks and flames filled the November night air as Watford’s elected Mayor, Peter Taylor lit the 100th Anniversary Armistice Day fire beacon at the south end of Watford Museum’s front garden.

The Watford Armistice Day beacon lighting was one of over 1,000 lit throughout the UK at 7pm on Sunday 11th November to commemorate the end of the darkness of the First World War and a return to peace.

The remembrance ceremony included readings by Mayor Peter Taylor; Hertfordshire’s Lord-Lieutenant, Robert Voss; Watford Borough Council councillor, Rabi Martins and Jan Rees of Watford Arts Society.

Petefire Artist Blacksmith was commissioned to forge Watford’s Armistice beacon by Watford Borough Council. Sarah Kerenza Priestly, curator of Watford Museum said, ‘Watford Museum is proud to support local artists and businesses.’

Petefire Artist Blacksmith, Watford 100th Anniversary beacon

Peter helped on the evening by filling the Armistice Day beacon with wood, and a couple of strategically placed firelighters with a generous layer of wood shavings near the bottom, Petefire also loaned a decorative forged lighting stick, with paraffin-soaked Kevlar.

Watford’s fire station is just across the road on Watford’s Lower High Street and very kindly loaned a long ladder to assist with lighting the beacon – they commented that their job was to put fires out – not to help light them!

Peter Williamson said, ‘We are very proud to have been commissioned to design and make the fire beacon.’

The beacon will be stored along with it’s wooden pole for future commemorative events in Watford.

Petefire Artist Blacksmith, Watford 100th Anniversary beacon
100th Anniversary Armistice Day fire beacon with Watford Museum in background
Petefire Artist Blacksmith, Watford 100th Anniversary beacon
With some of the Watford Museum team Luke Clark, Lewis Butler & Sarah Kerenza Priestley
Petefire Artist Blacksmith, Watford 100th Anniversary beacon

Two Peters – Peter Williamson with Watford’s Elected Mayor Peter Taylor

Petefire Artist Blacksmith, Watford 100th Anniversary beacon
Watford 100th Anniversary beacon lights up the night sky

Making a round headed adze

Recently I was asked to make an adze for a man who wanted to do lots of bowl carving

He’d looked on the internet and tried to find different adzes, he found options but the were waiting lists and complications, then he looked a little bit more locally and he stumbled across our website and decided that he would contact me to see whether or not I’d be able to make him an adze.

Here’s a link to the story

Peter, the ‘adze man’ and the round headed adze

Last weekend of Herts Open Studios 2018

Petefire Artist Blacksmith, HertsOpenStudios Abbots Langley artists map

We’ve enjoyed being part of Herts Open Studios (we’re in the South West Herts area) for the first time. We’re hoping all our artist colleagues have a successful last weekend. We’ve had quite a few visitors and a good deal of interest in our blacksmith forged work. We are really grateful for the enthusiasm that’s been shown by the Hertfordshire artistic community for our blacksmith forged work. We’ve been reliably informed that Herts Open Studios hasn’t had a blacksmith in it’s ranks for quite a few years.


Abbots Langley artists

Our map shows the route for travelling between Abbots Langley artists – Henderson HUB on Abbots Langley’s High Street and Petefire Artist Blacksmith. This will be the last weekend of  our exhibition, we’ll be open on Friday 28 – Sunday 30 Sept, 10.30am – 5.30pm.

Look forward to seeing you if you’re free to come along – the six artists at the Henderson HUB are also worth a visit, there’s also Elvira’s Foyer cafe if you fancy cake and coffee too.

Herts Open Studios

Various blacksmith forged art along with art development drawings

We’re going to be part of Hertfordshire’s annual celebration of art – Herts Open Studios for the first time this year. We’ll be joining almost 70 other artists to showing our art during September.

For Petefire this means showing some of Peter’s decorative swords and axes, kitchen knives and hammers. We’ll also have sketches showing the development of many of Peter’s designs.

Petefire – Herts Open Studios

Bottle openers, cheese knives and heart pendants are some of the small forged items that will be offer for sale. People will also be happy to discuss commissions, if you’ve got ideas for large or small items.


Looking for a gift?

There will be blacksmith forged pendant, cheese knives, kitchen knives and bottle openers available to buy. Prices start from £10, we’ve got a credit card reader if you’ve not got cash.

Petefire Artist Blacksmith hot heart


Forging Saturdays

Peter won’t just be showing his work, he’ll also be forging on Saturdays between 2-4pm. That’s Saturday 8th, 15th 22nd and 29th.




Flapjacks, cakes, coffee and tea aren’t guaranteed – but we’ll be baking regular batches of homebakes. We’ll be collecting donations for the Watford homeless charity New Hope.


Paul’s Experience Day

Paul’s blacksmith forging experience day

Today I did a forging experience day with a lovely bloke called Paul.

He hadn’t actually decided on what he would be working on so I showed him the usual kind of cheese knife that we’d often make on a blacksmith forging experience day. I asked him how hands on he would like to be, his reply: ‘well I’d really like to get involved as much as possible’. So I said, ‘Why don’t we have a look at some of these other pieces of steel that we have here and we could actually work on something a bit larger than we normally do.’

He was very good and he achieved a lot, keeping up with turning the handle (which is the bellows and inducts air / oxygen regulating the heat of the forge). He was also active with the hammer and showed good dexterity. We actually managed to make a knife about 3 times the size of the smaller knives that we normally make – and in the same amount of time. It was very impressive, we often have a discussion about what we’re going to make on an experience day, this time we got straight into this so we didn’t actually work on any other bit of steel other that one for this project.

Lining up for a second experience day

It was very successful so now he’s been asking about what other type of projects we could do.

Projects around the house could include:

  • toilet roll holder
  • kitchen roll holder
  • fire poker
  • coat hook

I realise that not everyone will want to make a knife.

The knife making is very good as there’s a lot of different processing in it:

  • you’ve got the heat treatment
  • the forging
  • the filing
  • and the actual bringing everything together

I use recycled steel for the knives, it would be easy to forge other items too.

A very positive day – all in all and hopefully I’ll be seeing Paul again, where we’ll work on the next stage of blacksmith forging experience day. So here’s hoping and we’ll see that when it comes.