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History Of The Coach House

The Coach House was built in 1924 by Mr Edwin Parkin and was used for making joinery items such as stairs, windows, and doors to be fitted into the houses within the local Heath area as that was the time they were being built.

Edwin continued to work here until his death in 1937 when his son in law - Phillip Matthews - P.W.Matthews Builders - took over the business, until his retirement in 1966.

However, business was interrupted in 1939 due to the war where the Coach House was then used as a look out and a whist card hall until 1945.

After Phillips retirement (1966) Peter Matthews took over the premises and continued as a joiner with the addition of furniture making and cabinets which were made to order bespoke pieces.

After Peter retired in 2018 the Coach House was leased to another joiner (Sonabuild) up until the beginning of 2021 when Peter’s granddaughter Rebecca Oldfield took over the premises re-joining the link of generations.

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Whilst Rebecca is not a joiner or carpenter like her ancestors, she is continuing to keep the working workshop traditions alive.

As a trained Jeweller and Silversmith with complete appreciation for all craft Rebecca’s vision for the workshop is to house a variety of contemporary designers and makers and to support them with their small creative businesses.

Not only is Rebecca continuing to run her own business and pass on her skills by teaching her trade - at the coach house - she has decided to open those iconic double green doors into the space, for other local designers and makers to benefit from.

“It has been such a wild experience taking on this project – there has been a lot of DIY involved to get the space right - using reclaimed materials and repurposing furniture where possible. It has been a dream of mine to have a space like this. It is an exciting time for everyone involved and I look forward to sharing it with you all whilst continuing to grow and develop the space.”  

The Creative Coach House is a non-profit organisation which takes pride in its communal studios, promoting collaborative work and supporting small creative enterprises within Cardiff. If you would like to get involved please contact us.

“As a creative graduate myself - I found accessing spaces such as the coach house difficult. I wanted to create a space where fellow artists can come to not only utilise the space but be provided with communal tools to enable them to further develop their work and businesses without having to worry about all of the initial starting up costs all at once.”  

Many of the communal tools Rebecca has sourced or made herself – often reshaping old hammers and repurposing old steel. She has kept hold of various woodworking tools and machines which belonged to her ancestors and is thrilled they can continue to be used whilst helping other artists.

Browse through the pages of a book Rebecca created showing the progress of the workshop so far (2021-2022)

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