History Group Display

Beckingham cum Saundby History Group Open Day - 8th October 2011

This was the first History Group Open Day to be held at the newly refurbished Willow Works building on Old Trent Road using all the facilities that will be available to the group for many years to come.
In celebration of this Open Day the overall subject was covering previous Open Days:-

Streets (2006)                      Maps (2007)
Local Trades (2007)           Cottages (2008)
Education (2009)                 Wind, Water and Willow (2010)

Downstairs on the groundfloor with its ‘rustic’ setting was dedicated to traditional crafts and included:-

Rodney Cousins with his display of willow baskets, tools and books. Rodney, a regular supporter of the History Group, was visiting the Willow Works for the first time since its completion and was delighted with the facilities and excellent balance between professional/natural refurbishment.

Alison Walling, from Lincoln (click here for a link to her website), had a display of animals she had created using different techniques and willow. She trained in horticulture, basketmaking and garden design and works mainly with schools, local authorities and private gardens making willow sculptures and organising willow courses.

Rodney Cousins with his display of basketware
Ray Lister, who has previously taught willow basket making in the village gave displays of his work and invited guests to participate. Ray has also worked with the children on the school open day and has a natural laid-back approach.

Brian Ingleton from Gainsborough demonstrated the art of re-seating a chair. For his hobby of furniture restoration Brian uses both English and Scandinavian rush.

Children dressed up in costume and demonstrated willow stripping using a specially made tool by John Foster on the design of an original. The children used their prepared material to create a ‘willow fish’.
Children - stripping the willow
Alan & Sue Gale with Barbara Newman (centre)
Special guests Alan and Sue Gale brought with them a model of the Willow Works (click here to view an image) he had made from memory when he lived in Beckingham 40 years ago. They had travelled from Bournemouth and were very impressed by the newly refurbished building and with all the History Group’s memorabilia and photographs, many of which they had never seen. Alan plans to do more research on the Willow Works and the buildings that have since been demolished and will in the future be creating a ‘phase 2’ model!

Alan also had the opportunity to reminisce with his cousin Barbara Newman who still lives locally and who had not seen him since he left Beckingham in the late 60s. Barbara has attended previous History Group open days and has been a contributor to the history of the Gale family research.

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