In the early 1980’s Mr. Ray Rivers called a meeting for people interested in wood turning. The first meeting was held at his residence on Toohey Street Cairns with 12-15 men attending.
They continued to meets once a month at various places for approximately two years participating in and observing different types of woodworking activities.
During this time the group conducted several workshops inviting the community to attend. Two of the most successful were a workshop on woodturning green timber with a guest woodturner from the United States at the Cairns show grounds with 40 people attending, and later a workshop at the TAFE where 80 attended.
At this time the club was officially named the “Cairns and Districted Woodworkers Guild”. Mr. Rivers retired from his President’s position. Ruddy Moffet become the second President and held the monthly meeting at his residence Miles Street, Manoora for two years.
From these humble beginnings these dedicated woodworkers Incorporated the club in 1996 and in 2001 the Guild was offered a building on Knight Street from the Cairns Regional Council where they could set up a permanent workshop. In the early days the members accrued thousands of hours towards fundraising, and were also fortunate to be the recipient of generous grants from Cairns Regional Council, to equip the workshop with machines and tools required to ensure a safe and up-to-date workshop for members and the community. The Guild facilities are a source of pride to the members.
The Guild has now been operational for over 30 years this is quite an achievement in today’s world, and demonstrates the value of being part of a club.
The Cairns Woodworkers Guild prides itself on giving to fellow members and the community. Great satisfaction come from learning and sharing your skills in a supportive and friendly environment, and building enduring friendships while building your skills in a supportive social environment!
Giving back to the community is an important part of the Guild, supporting both ARC Disabilities and Cootharinga North Queensland on a weekly basis by providing the organisations clients a place of opportunity where they can design and build their own woodwork projects. The Guild provides the materials, and more importantly members deliver instruction and assistance to bring the project concept to reality. Each individual is generally very happy and express joy and satisfaction with their achievement.
We are committed to developing a skill base for all, especially our younger members. This is where the future of woodworking lies, and anyone interested in continuing the woodworking traditions have the tools, equipment, expertise and support they require to thrive.
The work continues to upgrading the building and equipment ensuring that the Guild provides a building and equipment are safe, up to date and inviting.
Our workshop has three machine rooms, a large work area with individual work benches and a stock of timber. We have a wide range of machinery including; lathes, drop, table and band saws, planers, jointers, sanders, and power and hand tools available for members to use for woodworking and woodturning projects.
Keeping the facilities up-to-date is an ongoing process and is supported by enthusiastic volunteers.
We are very fortunate to have a great clubhouse. We use it for meetings, coffee/meal breaks, drawing up your project plans, research from the library books and magazines, and most importantly chatting and getting to know your woodworking colleagues.
We provide a cold-water dispenser, tea and coffee making facilities, along with tea, coffee & biscuits. Soft drinks are for sale a $1.50 each. We also have a refrigerator, oven, microwave kettle and toaster.
Part of the clubhouse is used for the Gallery which is to showcase or craft and raise funds. We have working bees to create product and members can display and sell their work in the gallery.