Family bushcraft activities

Wild North Discovery

Bushcrafts, wild food foraging, birdwatching, wildlife, nature and ancient craft skills in North East England and the North West Highlands of Scotland


Greenwood working on a pole latheThe pole lathe - making a stool

The ancient craft of the pole lathe: from first principles to a stool

This week is aimed at beginners and those with some basic knowledge wanting to improve their skills. You’ll make a four-legged stool with a woven sea grass seat to take away with you. You’ll learn how to set up and use the shave-horse and the pole lathe getting plenty of practice and expert guidance working on a carefully selected project that will introduce and develop your skills with each of the main chisels. You’ll learn to make simple joints used in chair and stool making. You’ll discover the uses and properties of the various trees and the pleasure and satisfaction of working with green rather than seasoned wood.
 
Day One
 
An introduction to greenwood turning and stool making
 
Properties of greenwood and different tree species
Cleaving greenwood
Introduction to the shave horse and using the draw knife
Introduction to the pole lathe and basic turning
The roughing out gouge and the flat chisel
Introduction to the spindle gouge and skew chisel
Introduction to the stool making project
 
Day Two
 
Making the stool parts
(If you already have some experience with the tools then there is the opportunity to be creative with the legs if desired)
 
Day Three
 
Making the stool parts
Wood finishes used in greenwood turning
Drying the legs and stretchers
 
Day Four
   
An introduction to the joints used in stool and chair making
Making the joints
Assembly of parts
 
Day Five
  
Finish assembly
Weaving a sea grass seat
 
Duration: 5 days; 7 to 8 hours per day

Cost: 500 for two people (250 each); 100 per additional group member.

Individual one-to-one booking available at 500. Accommodation not included; see booking information.

Booking: Ring or email to book a day and time that suits you; tel. 01388 529154 or email enquiries@natureholiday.co.uk then fill in and return the booking form (by email or post) and make your payment by cheque or click on the button below to pay online. Download booking form

Further information: Minimum group size two; maximum six. Participants should be 16 or over. Although not too strenuous an activity you will need to be able to stand at the lathe for several hours pushing the treadle with your foot. Bring a packed lunch each day.

The activity leader has nearly 30 years experience in greenworking and the pole lathe and is DBS checked.

Location: North Pennines - Weardale

Booking options

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The ideal present; buy a half or full day activity gift voucher open for use on any of our activities emailed direct to you.