In the middle of my workbench is a wooden cutting board. For many, many years this has been where all my soldering has been carried out. The result of this is that the board is now 80% dead tree and 20% flux and grease. The surface is pitted and rutted with ever smaller areas that can be considered flat. I should replace it but it's been with me for so long I can't bear to. Besides, I seem to get on OK with it.
In the same shop that generated yesterdays post I found the solution. A soldering board.
To be more accurate, a ceramic board in an off white colour. 15cm square and half a cm thick, the top surface appears to be perfectly flat. I could probably draw some useful lines on it to aid accuracy but I haven't.
Working on it is great. The surface is hard but not slippery. The flux doesn't soak into the surface but if it does, then I'll throw it away and spend another 3 quid plus VAT on a replacement. If I'm feeling flush I'll get a bigger version. Something a foot square is only a tenner. Bargain.
Soldering boards on Cousins website