Tuesday, 8 October 2019

10th October Dowgate Fire Station on the Embankment.

I was invited to attend their open day along with others from city Livery Companies  Happily climate change protests did not impact on my short journey from East London. However I support them 100%. I hope their protests gather strength until our (up to now) useless politicians and broken democratic system changes.

Rant over and now to the great day I had with the amazing public servants in the fire service.

The young lady being dressed in firefighting gear volunteered. The first demonstration was with this investigation officer who showed some domestic appliances and explained how their interventions influenced manufacturers. 

This great dog was part of the equipment used to find clues as to how fires were started. It was also trained to find survivors and bodies after a fire.

This series of photos shows the sequence of events when cutting injured passengers from vehicles. The whole process is about time and injury. They are advised by the LAS (London ambulance service) as to the critical speed required for each incident. Happily the injured person was acting!

They break the windows and remove the glass after protecting the injured and their personnel. Screens are sawn as they are laminated, the rest is smashed as it is zone toughened. 

Bags are used to cover the spread of glass. Whilst this is all going on their is a senior member of the team advises and stands a safe distance with fire fighting equipment to deal with any secondary ignition.

Doors are removed and put at a safe distance

Drones are used to deliver respirators and life jackets to save lives at the scene as well as delivering camera footage and infra red images.

5/6th October Weald & Downland Autumn Countryside Show at Singleton, Sussex

This year the events have changed. The Wood Show became an Historic life event. Happily for the greenwood workers there were more very interested people and less just general public. Gone were most of the commercial stalls and huge eating area. Sales maybe down but the atmosphere was greatly improved.

Well this show was very much along those lines. Interest was much improved and so were the sales. Unfortunately they have now moved the date of the Historic Life event to the end of May. Hopefully we can all make it.

Many thanks to the organisers and especially Julian the curator and Mark Allery.

Thursday, 26 September 2019

18th September Fairlop Woodturners

Graham Pook our new chairman was demonstrating pen making partly as a tribute to our late chairman John Brotherton who made very good pens.

We used the container as a demonstration area which worked out very well.

Dianne Brotherton joined us for lunch.

Our next demonstration is next week 11.00 - 3.00pm with Tony Walton

 Monday 16th September Visit to Slough House Wood Binacre Essex

Nic Smith is now making felt!

Great to meet up with Katie, Will and Sue and Nic and Olvin Smith. A pity it was just a short visit.

Wonder of Wood Burwash Manor Cambs. 14/15th September

This was a brand new event organised by Tim Ratcliffe (champion hedge layer)


Bob Levy willow weaver, no matter how good or bad the show, the weather, he manages to do well.

Malcolm Ruffell basket maker.

David Owen with the Wimpole Lathers engaging young people in green woodworking and raising funds for good causes.

This first year was great, thanks to Tim and crew. Looking forward to next year!

Wednesday 25th September Livery lunch at Apothecaries Hall Blackfriars.

This was my first lunch as a liveryman. What a fabulous setting and great company.

Some of the Company silver was out as table decorations. along with some stunning pieces of ornamental turning. I try to engage with these pieces and admire the craftsmanship as would any maker.

I was fortunate to be seated next to Gillian Machorton, who was with her brother a woodturner. A very interesting Lady she lives in Norfolk not too far away from Harriot Sprigg.  She was facinated by her story and may well get in touch. with her. 

She was assisting me in trying to get a close up of the engraving.

What a very pleasant experience and one I could recommend.

Thursday, 19 September 2019

Informal meeting with the new master at The Old Doctor Butlers head, Masons Avenue EC2V 5BT

This was a get together for new liverymen to find out more about the company (WCT).

Good company and fun. I had a short journey but many didn't. Thanks to them for making a much greater effort.

Monday, 9 September 2019

7&8th September Belmont Wood Fest & Country Fair 2019

I think this was my third time at this event. As usual we were opposite the static engine guys who were chugging all day long, unfortunately the fumes were coming our way!


Jon Burbage and Keith Leonard were attracting crowds almost. There was not a huge turnout from the public and a surprising amount of woodworkers amongst them.

One of the newer recruits from the Kent group another Carol I think.

Keith was minding his shop whilst Carol was holding bag decorating sessions.

A Kent made and decorated pennant by Leonard Industries.

Damien Goodburn was demonstrating and educating the punters.

We were joined in the woods by Jill Swan, Roundhouse Richie and Phil Kara. Richie took me out to a local pub the Timberbatts Inn in Bodsham. It is run by Kaos blacksmiths who we have met many times at events. The food is Cajun and very worth trying, beer great. Have a look on the web at the bar pictures. Only open Thursday to Sunday.

Friday, 26 July 2019

Monday 15th July  Kent meeting at White Chimney Wood


Len  making a fresh willow plant holder.

Keith admiring a couple of stools from a potential new member.

He lives in a converted Oast house and inherited a workshop from his grandfather. Lucky man, does not use fixings just joints and pegs.


Jeremy shaving something, not sure what however.

Our new Treasurer John Williams preparing for a vampire hunt later.

Our cakemaker Carole Leonard on her peg loom.

The Kent group shelter being fabricated prior to a grand  assembly at Coopers Wood.


Keith making mini hurdle components, Harry in the background.

Kent meet twice a month on Mondays and get pretty busy!

Thursday, 25 July 2019

17th July Summer reception to meet the new master  at Apothecaries Hall

Image result for worshipful company of turners

Andrew Sindall 

Worshipful Company of Turners

Tim Cranmore a famous instrument maker gave the demonstration – making a recorder from a carrot. Great fun, he is a good entertainer and a member of the vegetable orchestra. Check out the on line videos.

Kent group meeting at Cooper’s Wood Keston 20/21st July

This was the wood looked after by Graham Aslett who sadly left us last year after a short illness.

Phill, with the first outing of his 10' yurt. He now has plans for a Mk2. 

Friday night had a bit of a deluge - it proved to be waterproof.

Sunday lunch with his family.

Coracle planning committee for the next Kent meeting.

Graham's two sons Richard and .... preparing to cut the cake.

Carole Leonard made this fabulous cake - central figure carved by Robin Etheridge.

What a lovely tribute to Graham, good turn out from the Kent group and his local friends. Hopefully we may do this again next year.

Cranbrook Iron Makers Fair Etchingham 6/7th July

This was my first time at this event, organised by Cranbrook Iron - local blacksmiths. I did not get too much time to meet all the makers but have these pictures. I missed Amy Leake who was opposite me.

This was Claudine's setup

These hatters were good fun.

Met this lady last year whilst visiting.

John Burbage

Great event, small footfall but an appreciative one. Look forward to next year.