June 22: Level 1 (percussive methods)
Sept 21: Level 2 (fire by friction)
Cost £90 per day
Venue: we’ll be based in 70 acres of ancient coppiced woodland, on a family-run working farm. A peaceful and beautiful setting. Dernwood Farm, Waldron, Nr Heathfield, Sussex, TN21 0PN
Making fire without matches, using the ancient techniques of percussion and friction, is truly empowering. It seems to touch a primal part of us humans and it’s a thrill, every time, when the flames burst forth. Fire-making is one of my favourite courses to teach, not just for the fun and empowerment of it but also for the sense of awe and respect that people can experience when they work with fire in this way.
Level 1 (percussive)
This is a comprehensive exploration of making fire using the percussive method. You’ll have time to explore and hone your skills of safely turning a spark into a fire that will hold its own. We’ll look at the various tinder that’s available for foraging. You’ll learn how to identify, gather, prep and use these.
This course is suitable for anyone who’s always wanted to have a go… and also for anyone who’d like to develop their existing skills of fire-making. My aim is for you to leave with a grounded confidence in your fire-making ability.
Optional extra on the day: purchase a beautiful Native Hands percussive fire kit, handmade by Ruby, for £35
Book now: Level 1, June 22
Level 2 (friction)
We’ll explore the bow-drill in depth & you’ll make your own set to take home, foraging your materials from the woods. Bow drill has the reputation of being really hard, but as with many things in life it’s more about technique than strength (but you do need to be able to kneel comfortably on the ground). It takes practice, & this is an opportunity to work on your technique, to build your confidence & increase your success with the method.
We’ll look at various tinder that’s available for foraging. You’ll learn how to identify, gather, prep and use these. Suitable for anyone who’s always wanted to have a go, & for anyone who’d like to develop their existing skills. My aim is for you to leave with an increased confidence in your bow-drill ability.
Book now: Level 2, Sept 21
Attending both days will give you an in-depth and comprehensive fire-making experience. Level 1 is particularly good as an introduction, but the days are also designed so they can be taken separately.
We learned so much… yet the pace was never rushed or stressful. Each part of the process was completely engrossing and I was able to be more fully present than I usually am in my daily life in the city. It’s hard for your thoughts to wander when you’re waving a smoking nest of grass in your hand, watching it burst into flames! It all felt so sane, human and natural. YK, Sussex
We’ll also have time set aside for connecting to the woodland surroundings, making the day a nourishing as well as a learning experience.
Suitable for all levels, including beginners. Groups are kept small to allow for individual attention and a satisfying learning experience.
Accommodation: camping is available at the farm venue and full details about this will be sent to you when you book on the course. The farm also has glamping options, including cosy bell tents and cabins with wood-burners.
You can read FAQs here