Local, Quality, sustainable

The Surrey Hills is home to a wonderful array of rural enterprises with a diverse range produce, crafts, activities and places to stay.

Use this directory to help you experience the best of the Surrey Hills.

To find a great place to eat, a unique gift, a gorgeous getaway or a personalised service, start by choosing a category below then browse our wide selection of Members.

 

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Hedges & Hurdles Country Skills & Crafts


Husband and Wife team and founders of Hedges & Hurdles, Lorraine and Paul Matthews are passionate about sharing their knowledge and skills with others, encouraging people to discover a newfound love for nature and the outdoors!

Experiences

Hedges and HurdlesLorraine & Paul offer “Experiences”, including Hedgelaying and Wattle Hurdle Making training courses, heritage skills undertaken during the autumn and winter months, through to hands-on Wood Craft, Willow Craft and Bushcraft workshops delivered throughout the year. Seasonal materials are used to make crafts, cut and harvested locally as part of a sustainable woodland management programme.

The outdoor experiences offered are suited to adults and teenagers, families and groups. Courses are also created to suit private parties, corporate team building events, WI members, horticultural societies, Scouts and Guiding groups.

  • Hedgelaying & Coppicing Training Courses

Hedgelaying is a management solution for overgrown hedges widely practiced throughout the UK and Europe during the winter months. A country craft that rejuvenates existing hedgerows by encouraging them to put on new growth, Hedgelaying improves the overall structure and strength of a hedge, providing protection for crops and wildlife.

The two-day training course takes place in Reigate and is open to men, women and children over 10 years old. You will learn the traditional skill of coppicing and Hedgelaying using authentic tools, learning from Paul Matthews, an award winning hedgelayer. Individual bookings and private groups can be facilitated. This course is great as a team building activity!

  • Coppicing & Wattle Hurdle Training Courses

Paul is also highly skilled at ‘hurdle making’, this is an age-old practice of weaving cleft hazel rods through upright hazel rods. Hurdles are used as a rustic, practical and attractive alternative to modern day fencing panels.

Following an introduction to this two-day course, you will learn how to coppice the hazel rods used to make the hurdles and prepare them ready for use.

Individual bookings and private groups are facilitated. This course is also great as a team building activity!

  • Willow Crafts

Lorraine delivers morning, afternoon or full-day workshops to suit, offering a selection of Willow Crafts for you to create:

    • Sculptures and decorative pieces (e.g. animals, mini-beasts, birds, hearts, flowers)
    • Plant supports and structures for the garden (e.g. obelisk, cloches, trellis, lawn edging, hurdles, bird feeders plus living domes and teepees)
    • Seasonal crafts (e.g. Easter, Halloween; Christmas)
  • Wood Craft Workshops

Lorraine also uses wood and natural materials coppiced and gathered locally to create a selection of Wood Art and Crafts, heirlooms to treasure or gift to a loved one.

Workshops vary in length from one-hour tasters to full day events.

Crafts range from wooden hearts, signs, boats, walking sticks, coasters, bird boxes, bug boxes and seasonal decorations, such as a wooden Snowman, Santa or Reindeer plus much more!

  • Bushcraft Workshops

Experience a full day in an outdoor workshop learning something different! As a novice trainee, you will be introduced to basic Bushcraft skills that you will learn in a woodland setting.
Bushcraft experiences are suitable for private corporate groups, families and individuals. The course content and structure will be adapted to suit the ability and age of those attending. We are always interested in running themed events too!

Locations

Our locations include:

  • Birtley Woodland Art Space, Bramley, Guildford, Surrey
  • Flittons Nursery & Plant Centre, Woodcote, Wallington, Surrey
  • Priory Farm Estate, South Nutfield, Surrey
  • Sussex Prairie Gardens, nr Henfield, West Sussex
  • Private woodlands in Smallfield, nr Horley, Surrey

    Commissions

    The range of rustic country craft products produced are made from woodland material gathered and coppiced locally and include Woven Arch’s, Beadles (wooden hammers), Obelisk/Plant Supports, Cheese Boards, Cake Stands, Birch Hearts, Wooden Tea Light Candle Holders, Wreaths, Table Decorations, Willow Crafts plus much more. All products are bespoke and commissions can be taken.

    Products and Willow Kits can also be ordered from our online shop: https://hedgesandhurdles.com/how-to-shop/

    Commercial

    The commercial work undertaken includes Hedgelaying and Wattle Hurdle Making as well as building Arches and creating living structures in situ.

    The materials used for our commercial services are all coppiced locally within the Surrey Hills. The material is harvested during the coppicing season, commencing in October through to mid-March the following year. Various materials are used including Hazel, Chestnut and Willow.

Our Story

Paul is an experienced tutor, national award-winning hedgelaying professional; and experienced horticulturist. Hedgelaying is a management solution for overgrown hedges widely practised throughout the UK and Europe. Hedgelaying improves the overall structure and strength of a hedge providing protection for crops and wildlife.

Lorraine is skilled at making handmade crafts from wood she coppices and harvests locally and combines these skill with her experience and ability to deliver personable, varied and interesting workshops and training courses for all. Lorraine made a huge career change to join Paul and has never looked back. They both continue to further develop their skills to offer new and exciting courses for their customers to experience!

A video by Luke Whatley-Biggs of Photography Possibilities – the Surrey Hills Enterprises Young Entrepreneur of the year

Suitability

Our adult courses are suitable for individuals, private groups and corporate team building events!

Our family workshops are also great for individuals and private parties and offer a unique experience for those being home schooled!

If you have your own venue or land we may also be able to offer the course on your own site! Contact Lorraine@hedgesandhurdles to discuss your requirements.

 

If you have your own venue or land we may also be able to offer the course on your own site! Contact Lorraine@hedgesandhurdles to discuss your requirements.

Visit events calendar to see all of Hedges & Hurdles upcoming events and workshops

Click here to learn more