A CHESTER teenager who has spent the last few years developing his woodwork skills has won a top national award.

Nathanael Griffiths, 15, has won the prize for British Woodturner of the Year competition in the Young Woodturner category, under 18s.

He was invited to the awards event at Oxo Tower, London and his woodwork now exhibited as part of ‘Celebrating British Craft’ at Oxo Gallery.

Nathanael has developed his talent and interest in woodturning over the last few years, inspired by staff at school, a collaborative support with his family including mum Sarah and dad Gareth, developing a workshop at home and even self-taught on YouTube!

He’s started selling his woodwork through local fairs including Wirral Festival of Firsts. His woodwork is innovative and includes smartphone and tablet speakers, along with beautifully crafted bowls and chopping boards.

A pupil of local specialist education school, West Kirby School and College, since Year 8, Nathanael has an autism diagnosis and had previously been out of mainstream school.

His mum Sarah Griffiths said: “A different approach to his education ‘thinking outside the box’, using his woodturning and photography special interests to engage him in school has enabled Nathanael’s progress and huge personal achievement.”

Nathanael said: “All the staff at my school have been really kind and supportive."

Nathanael now hopes to progress this talent as a career. More of Nathanael’s woodturning can be seen on Instagram at griffithswoodworking – www.instagram.com/griffithswoodworking.