I'm playing catch-up with this blog so my timeline is a little out. Back in September I took a course with Becky Fairclough of Chameleon Designs.
She has some unique lampwork beads which she has designed and made. Such as these
It was a 2 day course, for complete beginners and included everything you need to know to set up the hobby back home.
It was very intensive but gave me a good grounding. It is not a cheap hobby to start so I had some big decisions to make if I wanted to go take it up.
Here is a link to her classes page: http://www.chameleondesigns.co.uk/Classes.html