Pole lathe making 2 day course in Sussex Woodland

Danny Harling


Spend a few days in a beautiful Sussex woodland, using locally grown hardwood to make yourself a beautiful finished product that you can cherish for life.

Starting with a simple log, you chop, cut and whittle your way towards your own hand-made piece of furniture.

The tools and techniques used are all traditional; handed down from craftsmen to craftsmen, with little changed over the generations. Using simple hand tools avoids the noise, dust and danger of modern carpentry techniques, and allows you to fully immerse yourself in the tranquility of this small forest.

In this small sanctuary, away from the noise and distraction of everyday living, you can enjoy the chatter of the birds and the whispering of the wind to the trees. The woods themselves are owned and maintained by woodsman, furniture maker and tutor Danny Harling, who for over twenty years has been caring for this land and teaching his craft. He prides himself on ensuring that everyone who attends, leaves with a piece of furniture they can be proud of. You might just surprise yourself!

The space is safe and inclusive, so come and join a small group of like-minded group of people for chats around the fire-side over lunch.

The pole lathe is a primitive and ancient device that uses leg power to spin the timber blank so a sharp tool can be held against it and the wood “turned”. It uses a long flexible pole as a return spring, hence the name. It has been used for centuries to make chair parts.

This weekend you will be building a lathe from scratch , using green hardwoods , usually ash ,to form the bed and the legs and then moving on to make the “poppets “ , the tool rest , the treadle and the steel centres . It is a busy weekend with some large scale green woodwork .

Cancellation and a full refund can be obtained up to 2 weeks before the course starts. Start dates may be amended on request.

What's included in the price?

The fire is kept alight all day, and so tea and coffee always on the go. Lunch is soup and bread or something else warm and wholesome. The world's best flapjack could make an appearance....

All tools and materials are provided.

Camping is permitted at no extra cost, although the facilities are basic. There's a loo but no shower.

The courses are suitable for anyone with an interest in green wood-working; from complete beginners to more experienced wood workers. The woods are near Lewes and easily accessible by car. Lewes is under an hour from London by rail, and from there one would take a taxi for around £15.


Danny Harling at Sussex green woodworking

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2 Lewes Rd,
East Sussex

Suitable for

  • Accommodation offered
  • Adults
  • Advanced/pro level
  • Christmas
  • Corporate days out & team building
  • Engagement, birthdays & anniversaries
  • Father's Day
  • Hearing impaired
  • Hen dos
  • Intermediate level
  • Parking provided
  • Seniors
  • Stag dos
  • Suitable for beginners


10:00am to 5:00pm

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