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Trees and Woodlands in the British Landscape


Duration: One Day

Price: £35

Book with: David Watkins
at Hawkmoth Wood

Hawkmoth Wood
part of Brafferton Springs
Helperby
North Yorkshire
YO61 2SE

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About the Course

One full day in a planted ancient woodland, exploring the history, ecology, economy and practical management of a place with trees. Guided by clues on the forest floor, and by studying epoch maps of the woodland in the landscape, we will seek to discover how this place started life, what changes have taken place over time, and how similar sites might be usefully managed in future to balance landscape value, economy and conservation. A useful day for people interested in the local landscape, for owners of small woodlands, and for all those who would like to know more about the behind-the-scenes activity which keeps our woodland resource alive and thriving.

Tom Handley

As a working woodman for most of his career, Tom Handley has been at the sharp end of forestry contracting, hardwood sawmilling and woodland management for almost thirty years.

He learned his trade alongside woodmen who had started their woods time felling with axe and crosscut. Craftsmen throw nothing away, and all the traditional tools were still there. Old ways were current - cleft oak fencing, hurdle making, turning and bodging, fixing, whittling and fettling.

Tom stayed in the woods for the most part, felling timber as a contractor, with spells in community woodland development and educational woodcraft in schools. Back in the woods in wintertime, and now drystone walling in fair weather, Tom joins us at Hawkmoth Wood as our lead instructor for greenwood craft skills. He’s been making greenwood craft wares - spoons, ash ladderback chairs, oak swill baskets and assorted kitchenalia - for twelve years, as a vital part of his annual income.

Expect a relaxing day’s instruction, with regular feedback on your progress, and plenty of tips, tricks and wrinkles to make making more fun. The content for each course or programme is planned thoroughly and has been well-tested elsewhere. The tools supplied for your use are of high quality and will be freshly honed. Tom will provide all your materials, and will tend the fire to ensure a cuppa is always on hand.

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If booking with a CraftCourses voucher for part or all of the course fee, please fill in the contact form above. Your voucher code must be provided at the point of booking.

What's included in the price?

10am - 4pm

Bring your own lunch

Hot drinks at lunch round the fire pit.



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Course Start Dates

Course dates are flexible; please get in touch for the next available date.


  • Suitable for beginners
  • Suitable for events & groups

Bronze Badge
What does this mean?

This craft course provider has been awarded Bronze status for receiving 1 or more 5 star ratings from previous students.

The Students' Choice award ensures that course providers get recognised for their efforts in the teaching and practice of UK craft.

They also allow tutors to gain valuable feedback on their courses and for new students to find the course that's right for them.