Willow Weaving and Hurdle Making in the Orchard

What a brilliant day members of the Lanchester Orchard and Allotment groups had on Saturday 24th March. They spent the day led by Joe and Matt from Abundant Earth, Brancepeth, weaving willow structures and hazel hurdles.

Half of the group made 2m high willow pyramids that would grace any garden or allotment and provide the perfect climbing frame for sweetpeas or beans alike. They then wove a living willow structure round the bench at the end of the nut walk in the orchard. This we hope will take root and provide dappled light for those resting a while beneath its branches.

The other group spend the day with Matt learning the ancient traditional craft of hurdle weaving. They learnt how to set the upright poles, called zales, split hazel poles and weave them around the upright posts. When finished, the hurdles were solid and sturdy and ideal for screening and wind breaks on the allotment plots.

Not only did the members enjoy their creative tasks but also the wonderful warm spring weather, the views over Lanchester and the surrounding countryside and the lively banter from their companions.

A great day of fresh air, friendship and creativity!