The Whitby Jet Heritage Centre can be found at the end of the historic Church Street in Whitby, at the bottom of the 199 steps. We handcraft a range of genuine Whitby jet jewellery, specialising in traditional Victorian carved work. We also design and make contemporary pieces like our 'little box of treasures' as well as stunning one off designs. In addition to creating original pieces we also undertake restoration work and rethreading of jet beads, please contact us via email if you have an inquiry. We are proud to house the last remaining example of an authentic Victorian jet workshop. The workshop was discovered by chance by a builder in Burns Yard, Whitby. The workshop was first registered in 1876 in White's industrial directory of North Yorkshire. More information about the workshop can be found here: Victorian Jet Workshop.
The business is run by Hal Redvers-Jones, the master craftsman and proprietor and his daughter Imogen Redvers-Jones who has begun her apprenticeship in jet carving.
We are a family run business and are passionate about integrity of the locality and heritage of Whitby jet. Three generations of our family have carved jet in Whitby.
Hal Redvers-Jones early education gave him a background in Fine Arts and his career has consisted of various design related businesses. However, Hal has always had an underlying fascination for the skills involved in creating small beautiful items; netsuke, Faberge eggs, carved gems and such like. These small wonders served to inspire and encouraged him to acquire jewellery skills in a private capacity but it was a chance meeting with Alec at a watershed in his life that sowed the idea for a new endeavour. Hal has been carving whitby jet and restoring victorian pieces for 25 years and can be considered a true craftsman. His expertise and skill in traditional jet carving techniques sits along side his constantly evolving passion for modern and innovative jet design.
The attached photographs feature the late Alec MacKenzie, who sadly passed in his sleep on April 1st 2010. Alec had an abiding passion for Whitby and for Whitby jet. He was and still remains a much loved and respected inspiration to myself and my pursuit of the 19th Century art of Whitby Jet carving. He originally worked for the ICI Company in Teeside but later took early retirement to develop his growing interest in the carving of Jet jewellery. Alec's interest first started when he took a night school course in geology. Naturally, the geological formation of Whitby Jet was an integral part of this course and it was not long before Alec decided to have a go at carving some pieces. Little did he know this was to open up a whole new chapter to his life. Alec spent many days scouring the beaches for his elusive raw material followed by many happy hours in his workshop. Although Alec's beachcombing was severely curtailed in later years by arthritic knees, this did not diminished his enthusiasm for his beloved Jet and he always sought new ways to develop his skills. Alec was one of those fortunate souls who found his forte in life and indulged it.
Imogen has just begun her apprentice in lapidary and jet carving. She has a keen passion for contemporary design, this can be seen in her constellation collection that features Whitby jet and marquisette.