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I was apprenticed to an engravers workshop in Glasgow in 1948 where I served six years covering all types of hand engraving including Heraldic Devices and Ornament, Monograms and various forms of lettering. During that period I also studied Life Drawing and Lettering at the Glasgow School of Art.
I moved to Carlisle in Cumbria in 1957 to set up a trade workshop serving jewellers in the city and other towns on both sides of the border. During these early years I trained six apprentices who have successfully continued their careers. All my work is carried out by hand using traditional engravers cutting tools many of which date back to my early apprenticeship days.
In 1972 my wife and I opened our first retail shop as J. & K. Harris with self-contained workshops. I have now retired and the workshops are now occupied by my son Richard Harris trading as Cumbrian Designs.
I have been privileged over the years to receive commissions through our civic authorities to supply and engrave presentation pieces to several members of the Royal Family, including The Queen, and also many other notable members of society.