Leslie “Les” John Wood worked for Dunhill for 25 years. His last position was master silver smith, but till December 2011 he still did all of Dunhill’s silver work.
In 1978, he started L & JS Briars to craft his own brand of pipes and marketed them under various names, most famous of all is the name “Ferndown,” named after the mansion he lives in.
Most of his pipes are rusticated.
Grading is by finish: “Bark” (90%, sandblasted dark brown and black), “Antique Bark” (tan sandblasted), “Reo” (brown and red, smooth), “Root” (orange, smooth), and “Tudor Root” (orange and brown smooth) and by size (one to three stars).
The Ferndown Premiers are bowls turned by Les, sandblasted by Michael Parks in Canada and then sent back to the UK for staining, stemming, silver work and finishing.
He also designates smooth pipes with straight grains with the alphabets SG.
Les Wood retired in 2016 and makes only a few pipes a year.
This beauty is a Reo 3 stars: