A Carlisle-based blacksmith is aiming to forge new connections with ancient history through his passion for metalwork. 

Dave Owen is the owner of BlueDog Forge in Thurstonfield and creates handcrafted ancient weaponry such as swords, knives, and poleaxes as a hobby.  

Dave's passion for forging weapons and armour developed in his early years alongside his love for fantasy movies, and he took a step towards making this passion a reality in 2019 when he purchased his first anvil.

News and Star: Dave with one of his forged PoleaxesDave with one of his forged Poleaxes (Image: Supplied)He said: "It is something I have wanted to do since I was a kid watching swords, sorcery, and fantasy movies. I have always liked the idea of making stuff.

"Rather than being the hero fighting the dragons, I thought that the weapons and the armour that they were using were really cool.

"I have always had a love for everything mechanical and made of steel so it is just something that I always wanted to do.

"If I'm not at work I'm in my workshop - it is something I wish I could do all the time."

News and Star: For Dave, forging is not just about creating weapons but connecting with history and maintaining an ancient craft.

To do this Dave pores over every historical detail to bring to life these items that were wielded by ancient kings, knights, and lords. 

He said: "It's a very 'living history' type of thing because you have got to go back in time... there is very little records of how things were made.

"You have to look at them in museums and look at pictures and break them down. You are doing almost a bit of detective work on the order in which things were done and how they were made.

News and Star: "I can see from the skills I am learning what is done where and what processes have been done on these ancient things.

"It was massive back in medieval times, it was needed and I would really like to think that I can keep this alive.

"I have just had a baby boy and I would like to think he will carry it on as well."