Working with Wood

  • 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] or call 01243 811021. Booking Navigate through... (more info)
  • Introduction to green woodworkingSunday 22 January 2017
    FULL
    10am-5pm The course Spend a day immersed in the historic craft of green, or unseasoned, woodwork, learning what it is and why the concept evolved over time. Students can choose to make simple but useful green woodworking tools, or a basic charcoal maker’s seat. The tutor Mervyn Mewis studied habitat management and is involved in... (more info)
  • Traditional English longbowFriday 10 - Sunday 12 February 2017
    9.00am-5pm The course There is a saying that ‘a great bow is nine tenths broken at full draw’, but by understanding the properties of timber and with skills, we can take timber to its limit (and return!) to produce an implement of incredible beauty and practicality. Starting with a simple stave of timber you will... (more info)
  • Make a traditional woven sea grass stoolSaturday 18 - Sunday 19 February 2017
    9.30am-5pm The course Starting with a log section of a tree and some component parts, craft for yourself the necessary woodwork while learning historic methods of chair making. Using drawknife and drawhorse each student will create their own set of legs and joint these to form the solid wood frame on which to weave the... (more info)
  • Make a post and rung chairMonday 6 - Friday 10 March 2017
    9.30am-5pm The course Using fresh locally sourced hardwood and combining it with some component parts, learn all the processes necessary to make and take home your very own side chair. Day one will introduce historic designs and choices, why these chairs have evolved and how we will make them. Starting with a log section each... (more info)
  • Sussex trug making workshopSaturday 25 - Sunday 26 March 2017
    FULL
    9.30am-4.30pm The course Over the two days participants will be shown the process of cleaving and shaving chestnut to produce the handle and rim for their Trug and will be shown how to steam and bend both chestnut and the willow used for the boards of the Trug. The final part will involve assembling their... (more info)
  • Make a Shaker boxSaturday 8 April 2017
    FULL
    9.30am-5pm The course This is a one day course during which you will learn how to make a beautiful oval Shaker Box. Along the way you will learn something about Shaker designs and communities. No previous woodworking experience is needed. You will be supported step by step through the box making process, learning traditional Shaker... (more info)
  • Make a shave horseFriday 5 May 2017
    FULL
    9.30am-4.30pm The course This day is for those keen to make a start in greenwood working with the construction of their own shavehorse. All materials will be provided and participants will spend the day making the component parts and then assembling their own shave horse. The tutor Mark Allery is a full time pole lathe... (more info)
  • 9.30am-4.30pm The course An introduction to wood turning on the traditional pole lathe. A friendly and informal course during which participants will have the opportunity to use traditional tools and to turn simple objects. The tutor Mark Allery is a full time pole lathe turner and greenwood worker, and regularly demonstrates at the Museum. A... (more info)
  • Bark basketryMonday 8 May 2017
    9.30am-4pm The course Bark is a traditional material that has been used across the globe and it is therefore likely that our ancestors used this material in similar ways. This day course will cover a variety of designs and uses for bark including folded containers and woven craft work. The tutor John Rhyder is an... (more info)
  • Make your own stick for country walkingSaturday 13 - Sunday 14 May 2017
    FULL
    The course Delegates will be tutored in the history and craft of making traditional market sticks, which is a traditional type of stick for country walking and also the type of stick a farmer would take to market as opposed to when working with sheep. Following the short introduction delegates will then work on shaping... (more info)
  • Carve a wooden bowlSaturday 8 July 2017
    FULL
    carve a wooden bowl course Weald and Downland Open Air Museum
    9am-5pm The course Learn the basics of woodcarving with this hands-on course whilst carving a leaf-shaped bowl which can be taken home at the end of the day. The tutors Jess Jay has been carving for 30+ years and tutored the subject at South Downs College. He has attended courses by renowned woodcarvers Ian Norbury... (more info)
  • Carve a wooden bowlSunday 9 July 2017
    FULL
    carve a wooden bowl course Weald and Downland Open Air Museum
    9am-5pm The course Learn the basics of woodcarving with this hands-on course whilst carving a leaf-shaped bowl which can be taken home at the end of the day. The tutors Jess Jay has been carving for 30+ years and tutored the subject at South Downs College. He has attended courses by renowned woodcarvers Ian Norbury... (more info)
  • Carve a wooden spoonSaturday 15 July 2017
    9am-5pm The course Develop basic wood carving skills by learning the steps to carve your own unique spoon using axe and knife carving techniques. The tutor Jonathan Roberts has worked for the Museum for many years and has particular expertise in social history and the artefacts which supported historic life. In his current role he... (more info)
  • Carve a wooden spoonSunday 23 July 2017
    9am-5pm The course Develop basic wood carving skills by learning the steps to carve your own unique spoon using axe and knife carving techniques. The tutor Jonathan Roberts has worked for the Museum for many years and has particular expertise in social history and the artefacts which supported historic life. In his current role he... (more info)
  • Sussex trug making workshopSaturday 12 - Sunday 13 August 2017
    FULL
    9.30am-4.30pm The course Over the two days participants will be shown the process of cleaving and shaving chestnut to produce the handle and rim for their Trug and will be shown how to steam and bend both chestnut and the willow used for the boards of the Trug. The final part will involve assembling their... (more info)
  • Coracle makingSaturday 2 - Sunday 3 September 2017
    FULL
    9.30am-4.30pm The course Coracles are traditional riverboats. Round in shape, they are paddled with one oar. On this two-day course you will make a traditional coracle to take home, and try out your boating skills on the Museum’s millpond. The tutors Kevin and Ellen Grimley have been making coracles since 1995 and have led coracle... (more info)
  • Introduction to pole lathe turningFriday 1 September 2017
    9.30am-4.30pm The course An introduction to wood turning on the traditional pole lathe. A friendly and informal course during which participants will have the opportunity to use traditional tools and to turn simple objects. The tutor Mark Allery is a full time pole lathe turner and greenwood worker, and regularly demonstrates at the Museum. A... (more info)
  • Introduction to pole lathe turningSaturday 2 September 2017
    9.30am-4.30pm The course An introduction to wood turning on the traditional pole lathe. A friendly and informal course during which participants will have the opportunity to use traditional tools and to turn simple objects. The tutor Mark Allery is a full time pole lathe turner and greenwood worker, and regularly demonstrates at the Museum. A... (more info)
  • 9.30am-4.30pm The course This day is intended for those who would like to improve their green woodworking and pole lathe skills. Anyone who has some experience (e.g. from the ‘Introduction to pole lathe turning’ day) can benefit from this day. The tutor Mark Allery is a full time pole lathe turner and greenwood worker, and... (more info)
  • Traditional wooden rake makingSaturday 30 September 2017
    FULL
    9.30am-4.30pm The course Make a wooden rake and tailor its size to your needs. You will make the rake head, fit the pegs as well as prepare and fit the handle. The tutor Mark Allery is a full time pole lathe turner and greenwood worker, and regularly demonstrates at the Museum. A member of the... (more info)
  • Weekend wood carving courseSaturday 28 - Sunday 29 October 2017
    FULL
    9am-5pm The course From a choice of five, select a carving project to complete on this two day hands-on course. You will learn the basics of woodcarving and take home what you have made. The tutors Jess Jay has been carving for 30+ years and tutored the subject at South Downs College. He has attended... (more info)
  • Traditional English longbowFriday 10 - Sunday 12 November 2017
    9.00am-5pm The course There is a saying that ‘a great bow is nine tenths broken at full draw’, but by understanding the properties of timber and with skills, we can take timber to its limit (and return!) to produce an implement of incredible beauty and practicality. Starting with a simple stave of timber you will... (more info)
  • An introduction to chair makingSunday 19 November 2017
    FULL
    chair making
    9.30am-4.30pm The course A one-day introduction to traditional chair making. The day will begin with a discussion on different seating constructions and designs. A short foray into the museum woods will focus on the sustainable management of woodlands for timber requirements and we will explore the artistic potential using natural form, shape and texture. Using... (more info)
  • Tool sharpening: the cutting edgeThursday 29 - Friday 30 June 2017
    9.30am-5pm The course This two day course has been designed for those with little or no previous tool sharpening experience, who enjoy working with wood but have found difficulty achieving a satisfying standard of work due to their lack of tool tuning and sharpening skills. During the course you will learn how to sharpen wood... (more info)
  • An introduction to wood finishingSaturday 1 - Sunday 2 July 2017
    FULL
    9.30am-5pm The course This is an intensive 2 day course suitable for beginners or those wanting to improve their skills. Students will learn how to take a project right through from initial preparation to a good final finish. Along the way you will be shown the value of choosing both the right materials and good... (more info)