What a fantastic day, lovely birds and lovely birdsong, beautiful carpets of blue, white and yellow flowers and a bit of sheep husbandry thrown in for good measure!
A 2 Day Course In Making & Using Charcoal
Where is it? Based in a private woodland in Surrey.
How much is it? £130 per person including meals and overnight camping
Who’s it for? Anyone!
Charcoal camps doesn’t quite describe this adequately – I prefer to call the event “A Fascination for Fire!”. Yes, we will make charcoal together – which is both interesting and very useful – but we will also experiment with fire starting methods, burning techniques, cooking qualities, heating options, even metal smelting possibilities!
Whilst your charcoal is “cooking”, we aim to keep you busy and fascinated by the process on a smaller scale – you use the same principles to make batches of charcloth and artists’ charcoal sticks. All this is hungry work and it makes sense to hone our cooking skills over a variety of different open fires. Of course this also depends on what you like to eat and whether this should be cooked over ash, ember, grill or flame. We will do our best to present you with a wholesome and tasty meal and, wherever practical, will include a selection of wild and foraged foods.
These camps are held in privately owned woodlands and we can cater for your comfort even if you have no gear whatsoever of your own! Just book your place, receive our instructions and turn up on site, or we can even collect from train or bus stations locally.
Not just a bird walk at all: timber extraction, coppicing, badger setts and arable farming went alongside 21 species of bird recorded!
With his acute hearing, he is often able to identify a bird before it is seen – as with the crossbills that flew overhead.
It was a joy and a relief for 25 members to hear the birds of Frillinghurst and Grayswood giving their spring songs and calls on 13th April.
Haslemere Natural History Society
We resisted Jon’s invitation to sample the yellow crab apples strewn over the path – he warned that they were the sharpest he had ever tasted.
Jon passed on words of wisdom at the start “birds are put off more by wind than rain”, “humans hear more when ears are cupped”, “a group leader is more likely to share his sweets with a quiet group!” Fruitful words: the calls/songs of 19 species were identified.
May Dawn Watch
Jon’s walk led from clay in the valley with mature woodland, past traditional pasture with ponds, towards sandier soils with coppiced chestnut. What a variety!
Great to see you last night and thanks for the pheasant prep lesson, I really enjoyed it: you are a good teacher.
CMWild Food evening
I just wanted to thank you so much for being such a total star with xxxxxx this afternoon. Both he and xxxxxx were blown away by the whole experience, especially your bothering to talk them through it so personally. God knows if it will have any permanent effect on him, but we really, really appreciate the trouble you took.
It was great to learn so much from you about the birds and environment. Thank you especially for introducing me to Stonechats. I have now looked them up and was pleased to find out they were behaving exactly as they are supposed to!
Thank you for your patience and helpfulness all the way through the assessment process.
Brilliant all-round naturalist, infectious enthusiasm, effective educator and easy-going raconteur. Total environmental entertainment.
Prof. Chris FeareHaslemere
Book A Charcoal Camp
Book your own place (or for a group of people by changing the quantity on the next page) and I will get in touch with you to help organise your weekend. Terms and conditions can be found here.
Price per person: £130
Discounts for group of more than 4 people are available, please email me to discuss.
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