Horsenden Hill Craft Film Gets One Million Views

Demonstration of how to make rustic bench popular in Thailand

Tom Bikerdike construction a bench on Horsenden Hill
Tom Bikerdike construction a bench on Horsenden Hill

A craft film made on Horsenden Hill has gone viral all over the world and this week passed one million views.

In August 2017 local film maker Steve Haskett filmed Tom Bikerdike on the "Farm" at Horsenden Hill making a rustic bench from a recently felled oak tree from the Hill.

With no plans and only hand tools he made a green oak bench over the course of two days. Steve then edited the film and uploaded it to YouTube as a convenient and easy way to share it not thinking it would be of interest to anything more than a limited number of people.

Steve, who worked as a documentary filmmaker for 40 years before retirement says, “It initially had good but modest viewing figures until it suddenly went viral a year later in November 2018 and started to be viewed all over the world. On Monday 22 February it passed the landmark of one million views and continues to gain viewers worldwide.”

The latest viewing figures show that the countries in which the film is the most popular are, surprisingly Thailand and Brazil.


Tom is a local craftsman who lives on a narrowboat on the Grand Union Canal in Ealing and is also now the local bee inspector. He also went on to make a bespoke kitchen for the Farm's Hayloft barn, also from local wood. The Hayloft normally serves as a meeting place for various groups and activities but, of course, is not open at the moment due to the pandemic.

Steve, adds, “The appeal of the film I feel is in its back to basics approach and that it was slowly made just using hand tools, after the tree had been sawn into planks. Tom used no plans but simply drew on his experience over his years working as a cabinet maker and wood worker.

“I subsequently made a follow up film of him making a chair from local Ash wood which has been viewed over 20,000 times but is yet to take off in the same way as this one.”

Steve now shoots and edits mainly about local craftspeople, artists and general community groups which can be viewed on his YouTube channel.

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February 25, 2021