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Willow Curlews with Phil Bradley at Broadrake

By Rachel Benson
Broadrake, Chapel-le-Dale, Ingleton, N. Yorkshire, LA6 3AX

This sculptural willow workshop is our most popular workshop; the Curlew is a lovely iconic Yorkshire Dales bird that breeds in neighbouring rough pasture around Broadrake and often flies over our site with their lovely evocative call.

Our brilliant and very experienced basketmaker, Phil, is also a master of willow sculpture and we first ran this workshop back in 2016 after I asked if he could teach a curlew rather than a hen! Phil has a relaxed & effective teaching style that will guide the group through all the processes to make sure that everyone masters the basic skills for each stage of this beautiful bird starting with the frames which are then filled with random weave. Positioning the neck and head will bring your curlew to life and give them all their own unique character.

The finished willow curlews look great in the garden or a meadow set amongst tall grasses and flowers or equally at home inside, maybe decorated with mini LED lights.

The workshop takes place inside a renovated barn with original beams and excellent facilities. If it’s sunny and warm enough we may lunch outside to take advantage of the amazing views of Ingleborough, Whernside and Ribblehead.

Phil lives in NW Cumbria where he grows his own sustainable willow for basket-making, garden structures and also bird sculptures, all popular workshop topics.

The price of the workshop is £85 to include all refreshments and a great lunch. There is a £20 charge for the organic willow, payable to Phil on the day. All the tools required will be provided. This workshop is suitable for total beginners.

More details & images at http://www.broadrake.co.uk/curlews.html

Email [email protected] or call 015242 41357 if you wish to make a booking.

We both support Curlew Action organisation https://www.curlewaction.org/ which works to help conserve this beautiful bird. Phil donates a % of the sale price of the demonstration curlew he makes at each workshop and Broadrake donates the cost of one workshop place for each Curlew day.