Currently by appointment only during the Lock Down

Originally training at Henry Selmer’s in Braintree, Con had his workshop at Mistley Quay on the Essex/Suffolk border for over 25 years. He moved to the Old Forge in Brantham, Suffolk earlier this year so that he had more room for teaching instrument making.
Con designs stringed instruments for people that reflect their personality. His  customers range from classical musicians, early music enthusiasts, folk musicians, buskers,  composers, music teachers  to healers. One of the key characteristics of his instruments is their play-ability, this quality allows the player to achieve more musically, and express themselves more fully. Con is known for the variety of instruments he makes. These include Guitars, Violins, Cellos, Lutes, Mandolins and Harps.  He has even been known to  make a Baby Bath Bass and even a series of Washing Up Bowl Guitars.
His fascination with Ancient Instruments has led him to be commissioned for a number of reproductions of Saxon Lyres, such as the one found at the Sutton Hoo Royal Burial Ship Mound. He has also made some Ancient Greek instruments, quite a number of Lutes and  bowl back folk instruments.
Working exclusively to commission, Con will be happy to discuss your ideas and requirements. You are very welcome to call in.
A selection of old violins and other instruments are available at the workshop.
Con also carries a stock of strings for guitars, mandolins, violins, cellos etc.
Con undertakes repairs and restorations.
Estimates are without charge or obligation.
Please call 07791770047
or visit The Old Forge, Ipswich Road, Brantham, Nr Manningtree, Essex CO11 1PH


Healing Harp – Made to commission – rather than have the bass string right next to the post the sound board carries on under the post freeing up the sound board. Made from all the Ogham Woods to possess all the healing properties of the trees.

A specialist in one off innovative and truly original instruments, Con has over 45 years experience making original design traditional handmade instruments. His instruments are known for their play-ability and competitive Prices. Con also undertakes repairs and restorations. However, there is a waiting list for his ministrations.


Have you ever thought of making an instrument yourself? It can be incredibly satisfying and there are many options to chose from. For example instruments previous students have made include a travelling guitar, Appellation Dulcimer, Mandolin, Octave Mandola, Steel String or Classical Guitar, Harp, Acoustic Bass, Hammered Dulcimer or Violin? Call Con with no obligation.


Currently by appointment only during the Lock Down

Please call  07791770047
or visit The Old Forge, Ipswich Road, Brantham, Nr Manningtree, Essex CO11 1PH

Email: nikireid83@msn.com but please phone if you require a quick response.