In July some of our members went on a charcoal making course with local woodsman Alan Sage. The course was really useful with Alan providing a wealth of inspiration, ideas and new skills to share. He even gave us an old oil drum to get us started with charcoal making once we start coppicing this winter.
We’ve been putting our new charcoal knowledge to use by making artist’s charcoal from wind blown branches and stacked brash piles. So far we’ve made several batches of single species charcoals (Oak, Birch, Western Hemlock and Willow).
We’ve found 20 artists and craft workers in the local area willing to test the charcoal for us; we’re really looking forward to seeing their results and getting some feedback from them.
In the future we’d like to provide batches to local schools and community art groups and help encourage the use of sustainable, locally produced art materials. If you’re involved with a group that would like to use some of our charcoal or would like to visit our woodland site and learn how to make your own please contact us. We’ll be visiting Alan again later in the year for a Coppice Crafts course. If you’d like to book on to one of his courses please visit his site here.