The Wilderness Gathering

Their website.

On Saturday 30th and Sunday 31st August, there will be a huge gathering of people from around the country interested in bushcraft. Alas Ray Mears will not be there this year, but there will be dozens and dozens of companies in this field exhibiting their goods. There will be dozens of short courses bookable on the day, and three hour master-classes (bookable in advance)

In their own words…

The Wilderness Gathering has now become the premier annual festival of Bushcraft, survival and primitive skills. The aim of “The Gathering” is still as it was back in 2003. That is, to bring together all those interested in the Bushcraft and Wilderness skills and related interests to enjoy a weekend of knowledge sharing in a relaxed and family-friendly atmosphere. The 2007 Gathering was filmed by Paul O’Connor and Ami Marsden from Undercurrents and you can see the footage of the Event here.

Onsite you will find Bushcraft schools and an international band of professional instructors hosting introductory lessons on all kinds of skills, trade stands, acres of woodland to enjoy your skills plus a heard of North American Bison! The Gathering has established itself as the ideal outdoor family event of the year and includes The Coyote Kids Club which was introduced in 2005 specifically aimed at youngsters with an interest in bushcraft. Specific events and classes are run throughout the weekend purely for the children. Included in The Coyote Kids Schedule is a compulsory knife safety workshop.

This year you will find similar catering facilities at the Gathering to last year, the new food court focuses all the onsite catering in one place, where you’ll find an excellent selection of meals, drinks and snacks throughout the weekend – Dave and Iona Barkers’ wonderful tea and cakes, the D3 Catering company providing the main meals of the day and the Sussex Cider man – all will be working hard to keep us all watered and fed. Watch this space for more details.

As you can see, all the information is in “their own words” but after my visit, I hope to report back to you in my own words.

Four of us will be driving down to Bush Farm Bison Centre, West Knoyle in Wiltshire. If you want to come, just programme your SatNav to find BA12 6AE. It is as easy as that? Don’t have a SatNav? Take a look at flag A on Google Maps.

A lot of people laugh at bushcraft so look upon it as a possible hobby and, as it is outdoors, a healthy one. Then dwell briefly on Bush’s confrontation with Putin over Georgia and tell me that Bushcraft and survival skills will never be needed in the twenty-first century?

Having been brought up in South Africa, and as a child from the age of thirteen, spending weekends alone with my horse in the bush, I am really looking forward to this trip. We have all kept the Saturday and Sunday free and will study the weather on the Friday before deciding which day to choose.

Just imagine what ‘ealth ‘n’ safety would make of my weekends alone in the bush! My parents would have been arrested, tried and imprisoned if it were in England! Stupid bastards.


PS; Today I am off to travel on a Mississippi style paddle-steamer. More about that later in the week.

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