As part of H.Art week a private woodland, measuring several acres opened up to the public for just two days. Visiting Clissett Wood, Stanley Hill, Nr Asbury on the Ledbury/Bromyard road was an unexpected treat. The woodland is owned by seven enterprising people who use it for their own pleasure and entrepreneurial endeavours.
We had a lovely morning there - first we had a chat to the woodturner who was dressed as closely as he could get to the way a woodturner would have been dressed in the time of the Spanish Armada - we had a history lesson whilst we watched him whittling away at a bowl - apparently they (the Spanish that is) were a far more sinister threat than Hitler and we are lucky that we didn't all end up speaking Spanish.
A Woodturner dressed as one would have been during the Spanish Armada!
After watching him doing his thing for a bit, we wandered along a path to a open sided barn which was housing a display of arts and crafts for sale. Lots of lovely things from baskets through to little felt mice! David had a long chat to one of the guys about our own woodland and he gave us a couple of contacts who might be able to advise us on what to do and whether or not we can get a grant to do it.
The Blacksmith clearly enjoying his trade!
Wandering on we stopped to watch a blacksmith doing his thing. He had some very attractive stuff on his work bench including solid iron dice which we liked, some gorgeous wall light fittings and lots of other bits and bobs.
From there we walked up hill through the woods to the part they are currently actively managing by planting new trees. It was a beautiful day and the sunlight was warm on our backs and the birds were at full throttle. There is something very magical about being surrounded by trees. Must be why we like it at home so much.
Several people followed us up thinking we knew something they didn’t - we did - we knew it was a dead end!!
Back down the hill we followed the sign to the refreshments and headed along a drive to a cleared area where they run courses in green woodwork, pole-lathing and chair making! I must admit I am quite tempted as I do love a good craft course. There were people making paper mache birds, some gloriously lovely silver rings and other jewellery, more woodturning and of course the refreshments. A fantastic woodturning stove/pizza oven and kettle boiling contraption. There were lots of chairs and benches obviously hand made and wonderfully rustic and the whole place felt like a great spot to spend a week learning new skills.
Lovely looking barn owl
To add to the attraction there were a couple of barn owls on show alongside a lady playing tudor music on her accordion.
Back down the path we passed a little family group of Gloucester Old Spots! (See lead photo).After such a lovely morning we headed off to another H.Art place - The Timber Store Gallery and enjoyed a display of steel and kinetic sculptures created by someone calling himself an artist, engineer and maker! I loved them especially the ones that moved in the wind and looked like a tree! Could replace the almost dead willow tree we have in the front garden. He had the most marvellous gate that was in the shape of half a butterfly!
Inside the Timber Store Gallery we chatted to a jewellery designer who was wearing a beautiful silver necklace she had designed herself…. just £600! Yes please!
Lunch time saw us at a place we have often wondered about when we pass it at Trumpet Corner. The Trumpet tea rooms had two studios displaying lots of stuff but by now we were more interested in lunch than culture and enjoyed a jacket potato each before making our way back home. A very satisfactory morning visiting just three of the 100 pop up H.Art spots.