Countryside Skills

  • Traditional rural trades and crafts brochure cover
    All our 2017 courses are now on sale. Download our Traditional rural trades and crafts brochure here, you can then book online or give us a call on 01243 811021. If you would like to receive a brochure through the post, or receive our courses e-newsletter, email [email protected]ddown.co.uk or call 01243 811021. Booking Navigate through... (more info)
  • Woven hurdle makingSaturday 4 - Sunday 5 February 2017
    FULL
    9.30am-5pm The course Hazel wattle hurdles were used for many years for penning sheep , today you are more likely to see them in the garden used for fences, screening off areas and also used for climbing plants such as clematis. In a slightly cruder fashion they are used in the development of “wattle and... (more info)
  • Dowsing daySunday 14 May 2017
    10am-4pm The course A day of discussion, practical demonstration, guidance and hands on experience will convince even the most sceptical of the value of this ancient craft. The tutor Pete Redman trained in the sciences at Cambridge University, has been chief executive of some of the country’s leading housing organisations, and now works in the... (more info)
  • Animal tracking and trailingTuesday 16 May 2017
    FULL
    9am-4pm The course Tracking is a skill ancient in its origins but for the naturalist it lifts the veil on a secret world often ignored simply because the clues to this worlds existence remain unnoticed. With skill these clues can be linked together and creatures can be trailed to their location. This day serves as... (more info)
  • Birds of prey experienceThursday 3 August 2017
    FULL
    10am-4pm The course Whether you are considering taking up falconry/hawking or would simply like to enjoy a day out that offers something completely different, this course is for you. A unique opportunity to learn about the husbandry and training of birds of prey handle and fly birds in the Museum’s parkland learn about the history... (more info)
  • Wild food: hedgerow gourmetSaturday 30 September 2017
    9am-4pm The course This course is aimed as an introduction to the world of wild food, focusing specifically on the plants and trees although we won’t ignore fungi should we manage to find any. We will also explore their myriad of other uses such as providing cures for ailments, refreshing drinks, or maybe something to... (more info)
  • HedgelayingSaturday 4 - Sunday 5 February 2017
    FULL
    9.30am-4pm The course An introduction to hedgelaying. You will learn how to thin out and lay. Working in pairs, the selected material will be cut and layered to form a mini stock proof hedge The tutor Phil Hart has 25 years experience, lecturing in Agriculture and countryside at Plumpton College, He is chairman of the... (more info)
  • Scything: Learn to mowSaturday 1 July 2017
    9.30am-4.30pm The course Learn a brief history of the scythe, how to select the right blade and snath for the job and set them up, peening, sharpening, the mowing technique, how to avoid damaging the blade and how to care for the scythe. There will be hands-on sessions with the chance to use the scythe... (more info)
  • 9.30am-4.30pm The course A day for those with an interest in and a desire to use the traditional English scythe. The day will focus upon the maintenance and restoration of these vintage tools (the blades being last made in the 1960’s and 70’s) as well as the adjustment and mowing technique. Participants are encouraged to... (more info)
  • Scything: Learn to mowSaturday 12 August 2017
    9.30am-4.30pm The course Learn a brief history of the scythe, how to select the right blade and snath for the job and set them up, peening, sharpening, the mowing technique, how to avoid damaging the blade and how to care for the scythe. There will be hands-on sessions with the chance to use the scythe... (more info)