Balscote press
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Welcome to the Balscote Press.


We produce bespoke hand printed letterpress for weddings, personal stationery, cards, invitations and announcements. All of our work is set and printed by hand to the highest standards on the best quality papers.

Fine Art Prints

We produce a wide range of exclusive Fine Art prints based on our own work.

Print Courses Fine art and Letterpress.
New courses timetable for Spring 2018 available in September.

A programme of practical workshops and courses for artists of all levels, taught by expert printer Brian Clarke. MA (fine art)

The site illustrates the work of the press, we have an Albion relief press, Heidelberg platen press and stone lithography press a Littlejohn etching press and a large Charles Brand 30"x 50" etching press.

Please email or telephone to discuss your requirements



Arab press
An Arab Platen Press, with yellow ink




Letterpress is a beautiful relief printing process where a raised inked image or lead type is heavily pressed against paper to create an impression. Each piece at Balscote Press is printed entirely by hand on an antique 1870 Alexandra Albion printing press or our super Heidelberg Platen press. Because letterpress is a hand process no two pieces will be entirely identical and small variations in the inking, colour and position are to be expected.

old image





Press card
Our card printed on 100% cotton 300gsm card, Font used, Eric Gills Perpetua set in lead type, the illustration is a photograph of our wooden type printed from a photopolymer block.



Balscote Press uses where possible 100% cotton, tree-free paper and card. We enjoy using excellent paper often made specifically for letterpress printing, it is soft to the touch and has a subtle thickness that is essential for creating an impression.


Coordinating envelopes as well as coloured envelopes and liners are available.


Our high quality inks are mixed by hand, allowing us to match most colours. If you send us a sample or have a Pantone number we will mix the ink to your specifications. We can also print with gold and silver inks.



somerset   Archers
envelopes   ink rollers


magenta press   yellow press   orange   Red  

Text, image and plate making.

We do use traditional lead type to print, our house fonts are both designed by Eric Gill, "Pertetua" and "Gill Sans" all other fonts are produced using Apple computers and printing plates.
For PDF of our most popular fonts click here

We use two types of printing plates depending which is the most suitable, the traditional "zinc" plate or Photopolymer.

Our plates are firstly designed and produced in Adobe Photoshop or illustrator on Apple mac computers, which essentially means we can use almost any font you wish. Some of our clients produce their own designs and send them to us in PDF format which are then used to make the plates.

From the design a transparent negative film is produced which is exposed in the darkroom to the photo sensitised zinc or photopolymer plate, once the plate is processed its ready to print. Each colour needs a separate printing plate made.


Negative film ready for processing.


Ted Self portrait
Photopolymer plate




Zinc block









address, The Studio, Mulberry Bank, Chapel Lane, Balscote. Oxfordshire. OX15 6JN

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