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The John Hanby Bonsai Academy

The John Hanby Bonsai Academy has been a successful and very enjoyable initiative at the Bonsai School. The objectives for the Bonsai Academy are to consolidate your bonsai skills, knowledge, and experience gained to date.

The Bonsai Academy will also enable you to proceed to a higher level of ability, confidence and understanding, to get more from your trees and more satisfaction from your hobby.

Unlike most University Level Courses there is no set time period or pre-determined final year. You decide how far you want to go. Whatever level you reach I can always find you another platform or level to strive for. There really is so much to learn, so much more information I can give you.


A structured course enabling you to graduate from one level to the next. Each class on each level of The Academy will meet four times a year. The subjects covered will include techniques, maintenance/practicalities, styling/ development, pruning/pinching, aesthetics of design and display.

The essential difference between this and all our other workshops is that the practical work will be carried out on John Hanby's trees. Students will be able to concentrate on learning without the diversion of considerations for their own tree. The students ability to learn will not be limited by the material in their own collection. Field grown raw material, specimen bonsai, commercial material at every level, all species of trees - The Academy will have the best selection of bonsai material in the country available for every class.

On our Beginners Course we focus on you because most of you have no trees. On all the follow-on classes we concentrate on developing your trees to build your collection and help you progress. Now you have the trees The Academy will once again focus entirely on you. I will help you to learn, to understand, and then you can develop further your own trees.

Entering the Academy

The Bonsai Academy is open to anyone interested in developing their bonsai skills and knowledge.

There will be a limited number of places available on each class each year. The cost for each day will be the same as any other full day workshop.

 Acceptance of any applicant for any class will be entirely at our discretion and we are not at liberty to give or discuss any reasons for our decisions.

Applicants may leave The Academy at any time but if they decide to come back, re-acceptance and the level at which they start will be entirely at our discretion. Academy members who miss several classes may not be allowed to graduate to the next level. They may have to continue for a further period at their existing level.

Note: Students already participating can now attend the next level of classes provided that they also attend any earlier level sessions they may have missed. New participants for the academy can enroll now.

Please contact John now if you are interested in joining The Academy:
Newstead Bonsai Centre
Newstead Lane (B6428)
West Yorkshire
Telephone: 01977 618054 Email: