Holker Hall garden festival...

10 June 2014, Arts, events and places, Would you like to leave a comment?

Holker Hall and gardens are situated just south of Kendal, right on the fringe of the Lake District. Every summer, the estate holds a garden festival, which is packed with crafts and displays.

I turned up on a very sunny Saturday morning, amidst a sea of arriving cars. It was already quite busy and there was certainly plenty to see. For the purpose of this post, I am going to focus on the woodcrafts I discovered – to include everything would make for rather a lot of reading!

Most of the woodwork was in the ‘rural crafts’ section, which was also a great place to see some demonstrations. Furniture making, willow weaving and swill basket making certainly drew in the crowds. Most of the craftwork was available to buy, from small gift sized items, to larger bespoke pieces of furniture.

Owen Jones is well renowned as a swill basket maker and had a whole range of his baskets on display. These are beautifully made and constructed from strips of oak, which have been ‘rived’ from a single branch. These dry out over time and create an incredibly strong structure…


Lorna singleton is a coppice worker, using traditional greenwood techniques. She had a great selection of craft items on display, including cleft oak hurdles, gypsy roses and willow handbags…


This stunning coffee table is the work of DF Timber and is made from a hollow elm log. The glass top allows you to see inside…


Willowpool designs made these rather attractive animals…


These incredible horses are life size and perfectly proportioned. Each piece of wood has been hand chosen and matched in with the rest, to create the form…


Jonathan Leech

Written by Jonathan Leech

Jonathan Leech is a woodturner working and living in Cumbria. He specialises in making bowls, dishes and platters from local sustainably sourced timber. Read more or about Jonathan or see a selection of his work.

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