Demonstrating in Abingdon this Saturday

Supporting Friends at Oxford Wood Recycling this Saturday Morning

p1170936 The big and overarching event is to celebrate social initiatives as a ‘Social Saturday’ which is an initiative by Social Enterprise UK to celebrate the work of social enterprises like OWR. This will be the first time I’ve been able to support an event like this but boosting the initiative and then supporting recycling and wood are very much close to my heart.

My friends at OWR invited me to show off some of my skills to encourage others to rethink how they view woodworking. I will be bring one of my workbenches that came from recycled wood I bought at OWR earlier this year. I will also bring some other pieces I’ve made using only hand tools too, to show what can be made from recycled sections of just about anything wood and how you can take the first steps into real woodworking.

This is their open-house promotion of Social Enterprise working at its best. I hope we can all participate and do what we can to support these behind the scenes people that make social enterprise and recycling happen in tandem for the betterment of society. p1160244 Yes, it is a business enterprise, but one that creatively supports others as they take their own steps towards finding work. I love businesses with a social concern for the wellbeing of others. I’m not going into everything that takes place here but rest assured we want businesses like this to thrive and succeed for many very good reasons.

Visit their website for details and location here:

p1180351 In my demonstrating I will be creating some different elements of woodworking including joinery and showing how I work with hand tools in ways many may never have seen hopefully. I hope you can join us on Saturday morning15th October. My demonstrating time will be between 10 and 11am .


  1. Excellent news, there is little more satisfying than using recycled wood to produce a viable/beautiful object. Save’s money, usually very well seasoned, and deeply rewarding. Recycled wood, old gate-leg oak tables being a favourite source of material.

  2. Enjoyed your past blogs on this place. Just one question, I’m from Canton, GA in the USA and was reading the sign that says “No Fly Tipping”…. I have to ask what is probably obvious to the British… what exactly is “Fly Tipping”?

    1. It’s leaving rubble and rubbish in someone elses property or n land adjacent to a highway or say in a farmer’s gateway because you don’t want to pay for disposal.

      1. May I add, it’s illegal dumping of rubbish/garbage done “on the fly” so to speak. Anything done “on the fly” is something done quickly. Of course beside being illegal, it’s selfish, and environmentally abhorrent. I presume the reason for this particular sign is because some moron(s) decided to leave items other than timber suitable for recycling outside these premises because they were too lazy to deal with their trash in a responsible manner.

    1. For 2 1/2 decades I used both in my chicken coops and then every 3 months tilled the coops with a rototiller about 6″ down and removed the soil to that depth. Each week or so I would add more shavings and my onions, carrots and other veggies were the biggest and best in the village. Beyond that I heated my home and workshop with shavings and scraps for the same length of time and then the homes of my neighbours too.

  3. Good to see you there Paul, thanks for signing my book (and the personalised inscription!).
    I didn’t have time to mention that I’ve almost finished building a workbench from some beautiful old Scots Pine (or so my Father, an old forester, tells me) I picked up from there a month or so back. Bought some Cherry this time, the guys there are always so friendly and enthusiastic, it’s a great resource.

  4. I’m receiving this on the 2nd day after the event at OWR and am hopeful that someone recorded the goings on and might share them here. As I am in Temple, TX, USA, logistics were a bit too difficult for me to attend.

  5. Sad that there is nothing like that in my vicinity in Austria. It is a good project I liked to support, at least I use dumped pallets or things like that. As I do not have to make an income I have my fun too with preparing the stock out of this and I made an Adirondeck Chair for my women’s birthday. She wanted one for years and this year she talked so much of it (maybe a hint??), so as I felt save enough I could do it, I did. You do not see it is from used wood, I had my fun and now I have a happy wife.
    So my afternoons teatime (we have the 7 minutes procedure a day, it could be coffee or tea) is now very comfortable, as she loves to be there.

  6. In the United States, they are tearing down,100 year old houses, and buildings. Some of them they just burn. The quality of wood in them, you just can’t buy today. The sad thing is they won’t let you salvage the wood. They don’t have the time, or afraid that you will get hurt, and sue them.

  7. PS-
    Be meaning to ask this, and seeing the clean picture of the bench is a perfect time, what did you change to do these one-side benches instead of the double side benches? Did you just narrow the bench the width of the second top or adjust to the overall size by narrowing the bench some and widening the worktop? The tool tray looks about the same size.

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