Reg Cooper began work in the cutlery industry in 1945 at the age of 14. He did his apprenticeship at John Clarke & Sons, working with various cutlers. The firm made a vast range of cutlery including tableware, pen and pocket knives. Hunting and Bowie knives were their main trade and are Reg's specialism today.
The cutlers at Clarke & Sons were encouraged to move around the different departments but tended to work mostly on one type of cutlery. Reg worked at the firm for twenty years and ended up as Production Manager. This involved buying in materials, arranging production and sorting out orders.
In 1970 Reg began to work for himself, making Bowies and hunting knives. He has seen this market diminish over the past 10 to 15 years. Reg now focuses on making custom knives and also commando knives, for which there is still a good market. He currently receives around 20% of his orders from overseas, including America, Germany and Australia, though this tends to fluctuate. Most of his work involves making Bowie knives for the British market.