In spring 2012 I attended this course organised by Woodland Heritage (www.woodlandheritage.org). Three fantastic days, spent in the woods and at Whitney Sawmill (www.whitneysawmills.com) in beautiful Herefordshire with serious experts in forestry, woodland management, lumber processing and silviculture. The objective is to raise awareness and link tree growers with wood users. I highly recommend it.
This is a project where a group of designers go bodging together in Clissett Wood, Herefordshire under the expert tutelage of Gudrun Leitz (www.greenwoodwork.co.uk). Organised by Chris Eckersley and Rory Dodd I was invited to join the second group. Twelve people in the woods, all doing woodwork and yet if you walked 20m down the track you could hear next to nothing. It was very special and a real treat to take time out to really appreciate the craft of windsor chair making.
Following on from this there is an exhibition of chairs produced during both bodging projects at The Harley Gallery called ‘The Bodging Project – before, during and after’. www.harleygallery.co.uk
Finally, amazing windsor chair makers Sitting Firm have now included my bodged chair in their range. It’s called ‘Pembroke’ and its a fairly close un-wonky version of the original! It’s called that because I was inspired by the Welsh tradition of ‘stick’ chairs. Apparently trees grown in Wales didn’t have the same girth as their English neighbours so the chair seats tended to be wider and not so deep.