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Dartford Heath 1

Events and Activities

From Saw to Spoon

Date of Event: 9 January 2018

Event Category: Workshop

Join The Ash Project and the Kent High Weald Partnership at Local Nature Reserve, Cinderhill Woods in Kent for a day of green woodworking.

Join The Ash Project and the Kent High Weald Partnership at Local Nature Reserve, Cinderhill Woods in Kent for a day of green woodworking to help celebrate the ash tree and create a lasting record of this iconic British tree.

Using only traditional hand tools and equipment we will coppice an ash tree and then process it into a variety of different traditional items including: spoons, tool handles and stools. We will explore the many traditional uses of ash and learn some skills to make things as we go. We will fell, cleave, split, whittle, shape, shave, bore, batten, point, gouge and bodge.  As well as providing all the tools and equipment we will have a hot fire and tea and biscuits.

The whole process from felling to finished article will be filmed and photographed for The Ash Project online archive.

This is a free public event, but places are limited so booking is highly recommended. The workshop is suitable for adults and families  Children are welcome but the event will involve extensive use of bladed tools and so close supervision is necessary. We will have some activities suitable for children aged 7 and up.

Ash Workshops

Join the mailing list or connect with us on social media and we’ll let you know when new workshops and walks are announced.

This workshop delivered in partnership with the Kent High Weald Partnership.

The Ash Archive

Date of Event: 18 January 2018

Event Category: Exhibitions

The Ash Archive is an exhibition that celebrates our human relationship with ash trees and the woodland environment. The artworks in the exhibition reflect on transition, the uses of the wood and our dynamic and complex relationship with the life, death and materials of the natural world.  The artworks are accompanied by a growing collection of objects made of ash that aims to chart the innovation and wide variety of  uses of this beautiful wood. With commissions and existing works by artists and designers,  including  Ackroyd and Harvey, Colin Booth, Adam Chodzko, Sebastian Cox, French and Mottershead, Magz Hall, Max Lamb, Sheaf and Barley and David Nash (in collaboration with Common Ground) and a collection of objects made of ash wood for Rob Penn’s book “The man who made things out of trees”.

The Ash Archive is a collaboration between the University of Kent and The Ash Project. The Ash Project is an urgent cultural response to this devastating loss of one of our most important species of tree. The exhibition curated by Madeleine Hodge and Rose Thompson for The Ash Project in partnership with the University of Kent.

The exhibition will tour galleries across Kent in 2018 to Limbo Gallery in Margate, Nucleus Arts in Chatham, UCA Brewery Tap in Folkestone as part of the Salt Festival and at Kaleidoscope Gallery in Sevenoaks.

“Fraxinus” A celebration of fire

Date of Event: 20 January 2018

Event Category: Workshop

A winter-time celebration of the meaning of Ash’s latin name, which means “firelight”. Ash was traditionally used as a yule log (sometimes in the form of a faggot bundle) and burns brightly, for a long time – green or seasoned. We will use ash that has been coppiced to teach wild fire lighting and fire building skills, and use it to warm spiced apple drinks.

The Firewood Poem

Beechwood fires are bright and clear
If the logs are kept a year,
Chestnut’s only good they say,
If for logs ’tis laid away.
Make a fire of Elder tree,
Death within your house will be;
But ash new or ash old,
Is fit for a queen with crown of goldBirch and fir logs burn too fast
Blaze up bright and do not last,
it is by the Irish said
Hawthorn bakes the sweetest bread.
Elm wood burns like churchyard mould,
E’en the very flames are cold
But ash green or ash brown
Is fit for a queen with golden crownPoplar gives a bitter smoke,
Fills your eyes and makes you choke,
Apple wood will scent your room
Pear wood smells like flowers in bloom
Oaken logs, if dry and old
keep away the winter’s cold
But ash wet or ash dry
a king shall warm his slippers by.

The firewood poem was written by Celia Congreve, is believed to be first published in THE TIMES newspaper on March 2nd 1930. © by owner. provided at no charge for educational purposes

Ash Workshops

Join the mailing list or connect with us on social media and we’ll let you know when new workshops and walks are announced.

This workshop delivered in partnership with the North West Kent Countryside Partnership

Ash Coppicing

Date of Event: 23 January 2018

Event Category: Workshop

Join the Medway Valley Countryside Partnership and spend a day coppicing an ash tree at a local wildlife site.


Coppicing is a traditional woodland management method that has been used across the country for centuries. Learn about this traditional technique and about the way that coppicing a tree can stimulate new growth and allow certain species to live for a very long time. We will also learn about the way that coppicing a wood can promote biodiversity and encourage resilient woodlands.
Definition:
coppice
noun
 1.an area of woodland in which the trees or shrubs are periodically cut back to ground level to stimulate growth and provide firewood or timber
verb
 1. to cut back (a tree or shrub) to ground level periodically to stimulate growth.

Lead by experienced staff at the Medway Valley Countryside Partnership

The workshop is suitable for adults and families  Children are welcome but the event will involve extensive use of bladed tools and so close supervision is necessary. We will have some activities suitable for children aged 7 and up.

Ash Workshops

Join the mailing list or connect with us on social media and we’ll let you know when new workshops and walks are announced.

This workshop delivered in partnership with the Medway Valley Countryside Partnership

Putting Wood to Work

Date of Event: 14 February 2018

Event Category: Workshop

Learn some about some of the traditional uses of ash wood in this one day green woodworking workshop at Hadlow College

Using the materials we cut on the coppicing day we will learn how to make green wood-working items using traditional wooden lathes demonstrated and assisted by skilled practitioners in the Hadlow college workshops. Learn how Hadlow College are equipping students for a future career in the countryside sector. Lead by experienced staff at the Medway Valley Countryside Partnership

Children age of 7 and up are welcome but the event will involve extensive use of bladed tools and so close supervision is necessary. There will be some activities suitable for children aged 7 and up.

Ash Workshops

Join the mailing list or connect with us on social media and we’ll let you know when new workshops and walks are announced.

This workshop delivered in partnership with the Medway Valley Countryside Partnership

Tree Planting: Thorn Wood

Date of Event: 3 March 2018

Event Category: Events

Come and help us plant trees to replace diseased ash trees in a woodland in Kent. With trees selected by a local ecologist to protect the biodiversity of this ancient wood.

We would like your help to replant this wonderful wood, we have had over 500 trees donated by the Woodland Trust and this will allow us to make sure that the replacement species are suitable and will retain the biodiversity of this woodland.

In November 2017 we removed two trees from Thorn Wood in Stone Farm that were infected by Hymenoscyphus fraxineus or ash dieback, over the next four months we plan to turn these trees into striking public artworks by Ackroyd & Harvey that tell the story of ash dieback as it is affecting landscapes in Kent.

Thorn Wood is owned by Matthew Whitehead whose family have lived and worked in the woodlands in Kent for many generations. These woods have been effected by ash dieback for many years, ash trees were first showing signs of dieback here in 2012. The woodlands here are coppiced in a cycle, however there is a need to replace a number of the ash trees that will be lost due to ash dieback.

Register your interest now by clicking on the “book now” button and we will send more details  closer to the time.

Ash Events

Join the mailing list or connect with us on social media and we’ll let you know when new events, workshops and walks are announced.

This tree planting event is delivered in partnership with the Woodland Trust

Tales of the Ash Tree

Date of Event: 17 March 2018

Event Category: Workshop

Join us as we walk through the woods, spinning stories about the history of the ash tree

Join the North West Kent Partnership in Edenbridge as we walk through the woods, spinning stories about the history of the ash tree.  As we walk we will explore the close relationship that our ancestors had with the ash tree. We will explore the mythological links our landscapes share with the Vikings and  the magic of the ash tree while looking at the stories of its protective and healing uses. We will discover  the uses of ash in tools and  weaponry and see how this creates an intimate relationship between the wood and our human histories across Kent.

Ash Walks

This event is part of our series of Ash Walks. Join the mailing list or connect with us on social media and we’ll let you know when new walks are announced.

This workshop delivered in partnership with the North West Kent Countryside Partnership

Ash and Lichen Medway River Walk

Date of Event: 15 April 2018

Event Category: Workshop

Study lichen growing on ash itself close up with our expert guides and take away some digital memories and lichen spore prints

Come and join us for a gentle walk along the Medway and through the delightful Yalding Fen nature reserve as we celebrate the ash tree and the biodiversity that the tree supports.

The ash is an iconic Kent species and it is now under threat of disappearing completely from our landscape owing to the threat from ash dieback. Join us as we celebrate its role in the Kentish countryside and learn about its place in the special ecology of the Medway River. We will be joined on the walk by Ishpi Blakely of the British Lichenology Society who will share her knowledge of this fascinating composite organism.  We will study the lichens growing on the ash trees close up. And we will learn from expert guides about making spore prints, so you will take away some digital memories and lichen inspired nature prints.

Ash Workshops

Join the mailing list or connect with us on social media and we’ll let you know when new workshops and walks are announced.

This workshop delivered in partnership with the Medway Valley Countryside Partnership

Duration

Two and half hours

Ash chair making course

Date of Event: 6 June 2018

Event Category: Training Course

This course will teach you how to make a complete chair from an ash log, it is considered to be the ultimate green wood course. Make a splendid solid seat or woven seat side-chair (with no arms). Use the axe, shaving horse and pole lathe to turn components for a frame chair or Windsor chair of your own design.  Steam bending, jointing, seat hollowing are all covered. Indulge yourself!

Green Wood is freshly felled, still sappy wood. To work it requires a set of simple techniques based on an understanding of how wood reacts – both to the tools, and to the dry and shrinking process. Because it is green, the wood is soft and easy to work with hand tools, the process therefore creates little waste, and can utilise small trees and logs. Greenwood work is green in all senses of the word – especially as at Bore Place the trees are felled as part of ongoing woodland restoration and sustainable management. Our courses and volunteer days are about learning woodcraft and helping with the conservation of Bore Place.

The course is run over 5 days 9th, 16th, 23rd, 30th June and 1st July 2018 (5 days) and you must be available to attend all days.

On the first day the start time will be 9.30am tea/introductions for 10am start, all other days we will start at 10am.

As you may be outside for some of the course, please wear warm, comfortable clothes that are suitable for the forecasted weather conditions and wear sturdy shoes or boots at all times in the workshop.

There is a maximum of 6 participants for this course so book early to avoid disappointment.

£250 per person

The cost of the course has been subsidised by The Ash Project  and is payable directly to John Waller. Please bring a packed lunch, hot drinks will be provided.

If you have any questions, please get in touch: info@underwoodsman.co.uk