Hay Making Festival – Sunday – Making Hay While the Sun Shines

Date/Time Location Course facilitator
31 Jul 2022 7:00 AM - 4:00 PM Terra Firma, Cowfold Marie-Angel Chevrier

The SFTG is organising a hay making weekend (30/31st July) using traditional techniques. A scything workshop for beginners will be taught on the Saturday and then on the Sunday beginners and anyone else who would like to come and make hay will start scything (the more the merrier!).  Austrian scythes are great for cutting grass but they are also incredibly good for tidying up areas of nettles, thistles, docks etc so even if you don’t have a hay meadow it’s a great technique for all smallholders to learn.  There has also recently been a resurgence in the use of the English scythe. Marie-Angel Chevrier has kindly offered to host the event on her farm at Horsham. We would like to make this quite a large event – we plan to invite Frank Wright to teach how to scythe and you will be able to purchase a scythe on the day if you do not already own one, but if there is enough demand, we could also ask more teachers to come and assist.  On the Sunday Marie-Angel will talk about sustainability and diversity, and we will learn how to use a small hand baler and how to build a hay rick.  Marie-Angel has said we can camp overnight, if you would like to do so please talk to her ( 07875 628554).  We will be offering a discounts of £5 to couples but as our website struggles with this – it will be a cash refund on the day.

There is a separate website booking page for Saturday.

Day 2 Sunday 31st July

Learning to make hay while the sun shines!

7 am Hay mowing and demonstration of the English scythe to make hay by Terry Standen (if you can’t make it this early, come as early as you can as hay making is best when the grass is still dewy)

10 am Tea break (cold drinks will be provided)

10 15 am Raking the hay

11 am Lunch (SFTG will provide cold drinks and a ploughman’s lunch)

12 pm Talk and demonstration on hay making by hand by Marie-Angel Chevrier

3 to 4pm Demonstration and practice of raking, protecting from rain, A frame usage for drying, Rick building principles and of our hand hay baler by Frank Wright who built it.

If you are a member and want to borrow or buy a scythe please book the appropriate ticket and you will be contacted.  Marie-Angel can advise on what you need. Scythes seem expensive (approximately £140-£180) but are incredibly useful for tidying up areas such as nettles, dock, thistles and other weeds.  We will be buying them from Simon Fairlie.  He has promised to give us a discount and we will pass some of this on to you.  Look at his website http://www.thescytheshop.co.uk/index.html  We need to put our order in by the beginning of July so you need to book your place early if you want to borrow or buy a scythe.




Bookings are closed for this event.

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