Fence post art by Richard Colbran

My Garden Friends

Richard says –  Over the last 20 years, a major interest has been the production and maintenance of out-door nature carvings for the local parks, making trail-markers and other interesting features for the benefit of the general public.

Seven years ago, when re-jigging our garden after a house move, we decided to add some small nature carvings on top of our own fence posts.

Suitable subjects were found, and wood selected from workshop oddments – oak, elm, ash, cherry, tulip-wood and mahogany.

Carving was mostly with conventional gouges and knives, and the best method of fixing them to the posts was that used for fixing walking stick handles, with an axial steel dowel embedded in epoxy-glue and sometimes a wood-screw to hold everything tight while the glue sets.  They have been finished with a variety of exterior PU varnishes or oil blends, none of which have stood up to  weather conditions, despite yearly attention.  Splits have developed in several of the earlier samples and some further repair work is needed

In the days when visitors were allowed in the garden, the carvings used to attract lots of interest, and as there are still a couple of posts uncapped the next subject may be a Covid-19 virus!

A memorial to the great lock-down!









































On August 2nd, Club members enjoyed a visit to the collections of craft workshops now housed in the Old Workhouse, King Street, Pateley Bridge.


Joseph Hayton, the stone mason, invited us into his workshop, and told us about his career and his carvings. Among those on show were two carving of Green men, one in Tadcaster limestone and the other in a much darker shade was one in Killkenny limestone from Ireland.

Outside we met his father John Hayton who was carving a scene onto a giant oak beam which had been commissioned to replace one that had gone rotten in the roof of a local hall.? (more of Joseph and John’s carvings can be seen on http://www.josephhayton.co.uk/ )

Another highlight of our trip was the visit to the glassblowers where Andrew Sanders and David Wallace showed us their skills with a full demonstration of how they made bowls, vases, wineglasses  and paperweights. They fascinated us with a full description of the chemicals involved and the simple tricks of the trade to get trapped silver bubbles, sprays of flowers, etc.  Some of us were mesmerized and could have watched for hours. Their website shows more of their work.  ( http://www.kingstreetworkshops.co.uk/glassmakers/ )