This paper describes a review of automation techniques as currently practiced in the forging and forming industry. That industry has been relatively resistant to handling automation because of the severe challenges that are faced by having typically small batch sizes, extremely challenging operating conditions in terms of temperatures and pressures and lighting conditions. The paper discusses how aspects of these difficulties can be overcome and it is hoped that the specific solutions and methodology presented will find general applications in other aspects of manufacturing industry. The concept of the “Automated Forging of the Future” is introduced in which advanced handling, rapid tooling-change and flexibility, smart metrology, advanced sensing and intelligent gripping techniques are presented. The paper represents the distillation of work on automated forging based on the authors’ implementation of a key theme in forging automation in Advanced Forming Research Centre (AFRC), The University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, UK.