A WELL-KNOWN blacksmith who’s been in the business for 20 years is handing over the reins to his company.

Nigel Tyas, 65, has run the Millhouse Green-based firm with his wife Elizabeth Stocker, 54, and supplied ironwork for settings as varied as the Tower of London and Leeds Castle, and TV sets such as Emmerdale and Game of Thrones.

The couple will pass the company on to former trainee Dan Lowe and his brother Gareth.

Nigel said: “We are delighted to announce that brothers Dan Lowe and Gareth Lowe are the new owners of Nigel Tyas Ironwork.

“Elizabeth and I are proud and pleased to be securing the future of our craft business for our staff and customers.

“We look forward to seeing it prosper long after I’ve hung up my hammer and Elizabeth has snapped shut her laptop.”

Nigel taught Dan his first blacksmithing skills, before he left to train as a farrier – a smith who shoes horses – returning in the last couple of years to work with Nigel.

Dan, 35, said: “Gareth and I are looking forward to taking on this adventure and building on the legacy of what Nigel and Elizabeth have achieved here.”

Gareth, 39, added: “This is obviously a very difficult time to be taking on this opportunity but that can’t be helped.

“We are determined to succeed and will work hard with the team to get to grips with the business in the next few months and take forward the full potential of Nigel Tyas Ironwork in the future.”

Gareth will take over the management and sales side of the company.

Elizabeth said: “Dan and Gareth make a great team and I am confident they will carry forward our business values and commitment to quality products and customer service as well as bringing in their own energy and ideas. We are leaving the business in very good hands.”

The sale was completed immediately before the lockdown, with the business – supported by Nigel and Elizabeth – operating online with a reduced capacity.