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Tuesday, 12 March 2013

What Is Bards In The Woods Now?


Who enjoys Picnics?

Our shared Picnics has top billing in all our gatherings :-)

Local food, as much as we can, but it does not matter whether folks bring a little bit or a lot for the picnic table. We just love to tuck in and share.

Its a genuine fellowship
of mirth and ideas

Our Forest Gatherings have two flows of purpose ...

1) An opportunity for invigorating personal well being
2) A peaceful presentation to encourage Public Access Forests - to remain Public

Bards In The Woods main intent is to encourage ...

More People to visit and use More Public Access forests More Often

... or we may lose that access and its benefits.

Invigorating Personal Well Being?

'Green Prescription' is quoted a lot these days
and there is a lot to be gained from this.

This is not just about power walking, jogging and biking n the woods
but more serene activities, such as 'Forest Bathing'

You can read about Shinrin Yoku - Forest Bathing by clicking here.

Keeping Public Forest Public ... Why?

155 Public Access Forests in Ireland, last count
18 million visits a year to forests, we are told
but well over 90% of those visits
are to the 11 leading National Forest Parks
leaving well over 144 Public Access Forests vulnerable,
to possible forests sell offs.

When Public Forests become Private
they no longer serve the public but serve shareholders 
seeking a regular profit dividend income

Bards In The Woods started ...

... just before Ireland's National Tree Week 2012, last year. Prolific Sligo poet Edward Durand came up with the phrase Poetree Walk and I wanted to re-launch Bards In The Woods that had done in Scotland many years back to include poems, stories, songs and folk drama.

and now our activities have expanded ...

people want to know more about the forest ... 

Visitors want to identify trees, plants, flowers, fungi, birds and wildlife.

Visitors want to know the stories for the forests
ranging from the tree mythology, the fae and other tree spirits
to the deeds of the estate owners that once owned the forests

Visitors want to know more about wood, leaves, its flowers and fruits
the herbal remedies
the forest foods
the useful things that can be made from each wood type
how each tree species performs as a fuel and energy system
and, especially, what can we do for conservation !!!

Within our gatherings we now share all of these things to enhance 
our wisdom, comfort and relationship with the trees and forests.

Ancient Sacred Sites Archaeology

This has expanded into being a huge passion with,
seemingly, millions of people now.

Give folks a choice of going to an ancient woodland with ancient yews and oaks
vs an ancient stone circle or passage cairn ...
and the stone circle or passage cairn usually wins.
I find that a bit sad, myself, but will not go into that here.

When archaeology ruins are within a forest they command incredible wonder, especially holy wells. These wonderful places inspire different interpretations and stories from those present. Sometimes they inspire those present into instant creative writing :-) 

Not all of the wonder is from these megalithic sites either.

A lot of of the broad leaved tree forests are on land that was once part of landowner estates where the big houses and ornate gardens have long gone but still remaining are gothic remains such as stone steps, walled garden walls, ice houses and boat houses. Their stories are intrigung too.

More people are viewing these overgrown ruined estates as sanctuaries of nature, learning, and personal peace today, rather than feel like a trespasser risking enslavery, starvation, torture and eviction that some of these places once administered.  

A Woodland Gathering hardly takes any organizing.

A woodland gathering can be 2 people as much as it can be 200 people.
but I do not think we have had 200 people turn up yet though.
I think the most is around 50 so far.
Most common is between 5 and 15 people, but I would like it to be more.

I will give you a step by step instruction in a moment, but first ...

A Special Mission ...

Can you help us achieve a special goal?

I would like there to be at least 20 Woodland Gatherings every weekend,
all around Ireland, each with at least 20 people present in them.

We need photos and video clips of these events to post.
All of these visuals will be referred to elected representatives
to show them where their voters are,
the people that are the backbone to their salaries careers and pensions.
Politicians will protect their source of votes, if pushed and made aware.

To get involved ...

Use this Bards In The Woods web site to locate forests and woods near you.

Click to check out the maps and forest locations here

Decide which forest you will be in and on what date

Click to check out the calendar here and chose your date and time

Let me know when and where you will be

so we can let others know there is a Forest Gathering in your chosen forest.

Click to message me here so we can get the word out

I will keep in touch to help you along

such as set up an accurate Google Map to help people find you,
and show you how easy all this is, with minimal organisation. 

Really, what this is about is ....

Hello, friends, fancy sharing a picnic 
and a relaxed ramble in the forests with me and others?

No programme is needed, just let it flow.

The Picnic is the Secret

Bringing and sharing snacks, picnic items, hot and cold drinks,
is incredibly relaxing and warming between people.
It is a total social ice-breaker.

Social exchange is natural "ooh I love the taste of this",
"how did you make that", "where did you get that", and so it goes on
... and flows into more stories and enjoying each other's company.

We tend to go over what we have seen and thought more too,
as everyone is much more relaxed and happy.

Bards in The Woods is now easy and relaxing

and its not just about poems and stories any more

Bards In The Woods is not a psychological gauntlet.
There's no being forced onto a pedestal you do not want to stand on.

Be with others in a forest each Saturday or Sunday
and invite others along to do this with you.

We also help to get car pool solutions sorted for those without cars,
or to save two cars travelling when everyone can fit into one car.

Mobility is not a problem, we take it easy
so wheelchairs, walkers, frames etc catered for

Children and dogs very welcome
but if you wish to be within a gathering that is children or dogs free
please let me know too.

If you prefer a more active gathering rather than quiet slow one
also let me know too, as we do this with some people too.

... so can you help?  Can you help expand our Gatherings In Irish Forests?

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