Field, flowers, fruit and picnics

Fields, flowers and fruit

A day of art and picnics

Dove Valley Centre, Staffordshire

Tuesday 4th September

 

Join the Stone and Water team at the Dove Valley Centre for a relaxed session making the most of late summer sunshine (we hope!)

early for apples maybe…

At this beautiful setting in the Upper Dove Valley, there will be time to walk if you want to, and wander if you will, to look at flowers, hope for butterflies, watch the ravens wheeling overhead, examine the apples ripening in the orchard and draw, write, scribble, print or sew the things you have discovered.

 

There will be artists to help but this will be a relaxed day without lots of formal teaching. Bring a picnic and spend a day on the farm.

 

butterflies still on the nettles?

Where: Dove Valley Centre, Under Whitle, Sheen, nr Longnor, SK17 0PR

When: Tuesday 4th September

Times: 11am – 3pm

What to bring: your own picnic, a raincoat (just in case – there is indoor space as well!), a smile

What we’ll provide: art resources and helpful artists, friendly people to talk to, warm spaces, refreshments and a wonderful location!

Finding DVC: the centre is signposted on the road between Sheen and Longnor/ Postcode: SK17 0PR

 

Parking: the track down the hill is steep but drive down to dale floor (past the farm and keep going)

Or park just inside the gate off the Sheen road and have a gentle stroll down to join us!

Cost: the event is free and no booking is needed – but it would help us a lot if we know you are coming!

 

Contact: if you have any questions, contact Gordon at stoneandwater@btinternet.com

 

turn discoveries into artwork

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a sea of grasshopper sound

sinking into a sea of grasshopper sound

National Meadows Day

6th July 2018

National Meadow Day (Saturday 6th July) found the Stone and Water team loitering in the dry but beautiful meadows of the Upper Dove Valley, revelling in the sweep of grass, sudden flutters of butterflies and swallows flickering overhead. In a partnership with with the Dove Valley Centre, South West Peak’s Glorious Grasslands project and Buxton Museum and Art Gallery’s BM125 project, our Summer Excitements! project got off to a hot and flowery start

During the day, there were meadow walks and river dipping, insect drawing and book-building, time to talk and sit and enjoy the atmosphere of an ancient meadow under the wide skies in that peaceful valley.

Our Summer Excitements! project will see events running through the South West Peak area. Other event themes will include old buildings, local wildlife and the value of picnics. Other Excitements! events can be found here

Meadows are part of our agricultural heritage as much as any old farm tools or buildings or ancient farmers. Their use, management, decline and recognition reflect our own awareness of the importance of our agricultural landscapes. You may find old scythes and seed drills in a museum, you may even find a toothless ol’ farmhand, but a meadow needs the earth beneath its roots and the weather that ruffles the grasses. You won’t find a meadow in a museum and they cannot be collected. They can be protected, grown and valued as places where history, culture and wildlife coincide. As well as experiencing the meadow for themselves we invited visitors to think, reflect and record their thoughts about the importance of such places both to themselves as individuals and within the landscape.

Those reflections became lines within a poem growing out of a hot, dusty afternoon among the grass stalks…..

 

 

We sink
Into a field rustling and bustling with life,
Into the froth of grass,
Into a sea of grasshopper sound,
A dream where nothing changes.
The cows sleeping under a willow
Have been resting there for centuries.

trees hold the edge of the meadow

Memories are rooted in these meadows,
In the fleeting lives of butterflies,
In nodding seedheads,
In thistledown drifting on a hot breeze.
Farms, families, paths, tools and stories,
All knitted to the earth as tightly as the turf.
Childhood holidays rooted here too,
New names, first meetings,
Stonechats, curlews, those grasshoppers again.

The rhythm of a scythe echoes across centuries
They walked where we walk,
Those old farmers on a summer day,
The slice and hiss of a blade and
The whetstone that hones the edge,
Finding shade under these same trees,
Cutting the waving grass from the same sward.

Harebell and cranesbill
Selfheal and tormentil,
Scabious and burnet,
The names are an enchantment
A spell for a meadow,
Whispered on a dusty wind
Colour, scent, pollen and promise,

Foxtail, cocksfoot,
Fescue, vernal and bent
The rooted and the free
Meadow brown and large white
Ringlet and tortoiseshell,
Prayers between earth and sky.

Futures are rooted in this rare and ancient place,
Still growing memories
Having fun in the river, catching insects,
A diving beetle!

Knapweed and burnet nod purple heads
Studding the rippling ribbons of colour
Black medick nods, yellow heads in the hot dry grass.
Seeds of the future in a rare and ancient place,
Lose the meadow and the memories wither too,
The cows across the field will sleep only in the present.

 

 

 

 

 

 

SNIPPETS
And here is a set of small pieces that didn’t quite fit into the larger poem

1. Bumblebees embroider the meadow
Knotting threads with flight paths
Charting by pollen, by nectar, colour coding
Scent-coding, the maps of their lives.

2. Yellow rattle whispers,
Dry and sandy,
Small bones in a bag,
A snake’s angry warning.

3. Bony fingers in the tops of the ash trees
Point a warning to the future

4. Falling sky splinters
Into scabious and cornflower blue,
While tormentil nestles in the grass,
Droplets of sunshine on the green

5. The promise of memories to grow with the hay
The dread of fields empty of hope

 

With many thanks to all our hay meadow artists and poets

and our partners on this rewarding day

Stone and Water thanks South West Peak

and The Bingham Trust for their support

Summer adventures

Over the summer months, Stone and Water are hoping to arrange exciting events in different places as part of several projects

 

We cannot release definite dates and times yet as we are still waiting for funding to confirm but as the summer unfolds around us and flowers open and butterflies flutter, we wanted our friends out there to know that we haven’t forgotten you and to keep your eyes open for news!

 

All these activities will develop in conjunction with our friends at Creeping Toad so events will be posted on Toadpages as well.

 

Derwent Stories

Events across the Derwentwise area – more or less along valley of the River Derwent from Cromford to Derby

 

Events will range from art and storywalks to picnic days with time to make, think, draw and explore

 

These events will be free and open to everyone but their structure and activities will be aimed at young people with additional needs and their families

 

Partners: Umbrella and Derwentwise

 

Summer excitements

Events in the Southwest Peak area ranging from haymeadows in the Upper Dove Valley to picnics in Taxal and ghost stories and old buildings in the Moorlands

 

Partners: Southwest Peak, Dove Valley Centre

 

With the Derwent Stories and Summer excitements projects, we will post definite dates and details as soon as we can. These will be posted here and also on our facebook page

 

Buxton

And in Buxton, we will be part of the Festival Fringe again

Sunday 15th July TINY! AN UNDERWATER WORLD
We are back as the Tiny! team for another day of making and laughter. Join us in creating a whole submarine world in our sea tent. Mermaids and monsters, sharks, dolphins and seahorses: who knows what will be wriggling in our seaweed? Join us in the Gardens near the young children’s playground.
11am to 3pm Free, Ages 2+

 

Thursday 19th July LOST STORIES OF BUXTON Buxton secrets: help us invent the lost stories of Buxton. Join storyteller Gordon MacLellan for a morning (or afternoon) of secret passages, treasures, ghosts and adventures. Hear old stories and make up new ones, turning stories into storycastles and wonderwoods. No tickets needed. Drop by and join in. All materials provided.
Buxton Library 10:30am to 12:30pm, 1:30pm to 3:30pm Free

 

Saturday 21st THE BUXTON PRIDE PICNIC Celebrate Queer Buxton (LGBT+ and friends!) with an afternoon of graceful silliness and frivolous strength. Bring your own exquisite nibbles, an umbrella or parasol if appropriate, and join us for a picnic as elegant as we can make it. Winner of last year’s Spirit of the Fringe Award.
Pavilion Gardens – Swimming Pool Lawns 2pm to 5pm Free

 

With all our summer events, we gratefully acknowledge support from The Bingham Trust

Save

A Wild Day Out!

Rosehip detail

A Wild Day Out

(& plant swap)

Sunday June 7th

12 noon – 4pm

The Dove Valley Centre, Under Whitle Farm

Sheen, Longnor, Buxton, SK17 0PR

www.dovevalleycentre.co.uk

email: walker @ dovevalleycentre.co.uk

a couple of years ago we wove a basket out of  materials we found in the woods and fields

a couple of years ago we wove a basket out of materials we found in the woods and fields

This is an annual event that has grown and changed over the eyars but remains a delightful start to the summer. Beautiful fields to wander over, a wood to walk in, an orchard, a pond and the River Dove here only a couple of miles from its source in the moorlands

Storytelling, action

Telling stories at DVC

Stone and Water have been there from the first events telling stories and adding art activities. This time, we’ll be there with our Leek: once, now and next display and activities. We’ll be making pennants: small flags for fluttering, filled with your own ideas from the history of the Moorlands ( castles? knights? princes? princesses? lions, unicorns and heraldic monsters?), from this edge of summer in the hills or from your hopes for what might come next in your life and adventures

foraging!

foraging!

Summer events and other excitements!

Leek: once again
New display and event moments

Lonn-204 copy

Our Leek: once, now and next project has been a great success. From a “Birthday Party for a Lost Abbey” to far more sensible history talks, embroidery and appliqué sessions and a pop-up street from the lost years of Leek, project ideas and activities have engaged and excited visitors

Now we have a few last sessions and a few opportunities for some more….

Come and join us!

eventful times in Leek: once

eventful times in Leek: once

May 2015:
all month the spectacular Cope for a Lost Abbot will be on display in the foyer of The Green Man Gallery in Buxton (check out the Gallery’s website for opening times)*

23, 24, 25th May: our exhibition of work and activities from the project will join the Cope on display in the The Green Man Gallery. Beautiful photos reaching from Leek, once (ruins, memories, dreams) to Leek, now (visitors capturing their own ideas, participants working on projects) with opportunities for you to add your thoughts of Leek: next

Sunday 24th May: Princely Pennants and Princess Flags: 1 – 4pm, The Green Man Gallery: join us to design your own summer flag. Invent a Coat of Arms. Create monsters for brave knights and bold heroines. Add an image to our Wild Pennant. Free event: just drop by and join in but allow 30 minutes for your flagging. Children under 7, need to bring a grown-up with them. Materials provided. The mess you make yourself

once upon a time in the High Peak

once upon a time in the High Peak

Wednesday 27th May: The Lost Castles of Buxton; 10 -12, 1- 3, Buxton Museum. The Display will be up again in the museum and we’ll be inviting you to step back in time and make the house you think, hope, or worry, that you might have lived in when Dieulacres Abbey was at its height and Leek was the focal point for trade, travel and villainy across the Moorlands. Free event. No booking needed. Children under 7, need to bring a grown-up with them. Materials provided.

June 2015
Sunday 7th June: The Big Bird, Beast and Botany Hunt, Dove Valley Centre, 12 – 4 pm. Our display and our artists head back into the Staffordshire Moorlands for an afternoon at the delicious Dove Valley Centre. Tucked into the Upper Dove Valley, the Centre welcomes visitors to the start of summer with wildflower meadows, an orchard, explorations of river wildlife and a generally lovely afternoon. We’ll be there with summer flags and stories, encouraging you to capture summer on a fluttering pennant or brand a story-hero or adventure-horror on a flag for yourself

Would you like a session?
We have a bit of water here at the bottom of the well to offer other groups. If you  are interested in a session for your local group (Staffordshire Moorlands, High Peak, Derbyshire Dales), get in touch! We could come and do a lively “making” workshop, a careful sewing/applique/fabric painting session, tell stories or just talk to your group about what we have been doing.

DSCF0914

Email Gordon at creepingtoad@btinternet.com or call on 07791 096857

* The display (and especially the Cope) features work by groups from our project partners Borderland Voices so if you would like to see some BV achievements, here is another reason to come and visit us!

Leek: once, now and next is supported by:

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Owls, flowers and waterfalls

Owls, flowers and waterfalls

a relief-printing workshop in Dovedale

with Maria Strutz

Sunday 17th May 2015

10am – 4pm

Maria's owl  

drawing inspiration from the beautiful Upper Dove Valley,

spend a day experimenting with techniques,

and take home your own finished prints

  • Free, materials provided
  • Provided as training for adults looking to extend their own skills
  • Venue: Dove Valley Centre
  • please bring food to share for lunch
  • no experience needed!

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Spaces are limited, booking is needed, so grab your place: stoneandwater@btinternet.com

or call 07791 096857

 

More details sent with confirmation

sketch, scribble, draw, lino-cut, easi-print,

paint, stamp and mess!

Lowest primroses

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Apple Day, 2014

Apple Day

Sunday 12th October

Dove Valley Centre

roasting apples in an Apple Day fire

roasting apples in an Apple Day fire

Where: Dove, Valley Centre, Under Whitle, nr Longnor, 7 miles south of Buxton SK17 0PR

When: 11am – 3.30pm

Cost: a free event but donations are appreciated!

More information: www.dovevalleycentre.co.uk

a day of apple, orchard and Staffordshire Moorland fun

  • Apple tasting & identification
  •  Orchard wildlife
  • Apple juicing with Leek Food Group (bring own apples & bottles)
  • Story telling
  • Appley fun activities for children
  • Bake apples in the camp fire

We’ll have some Leek: once, now and next artists at Apple Day to tell old stories out of the moorlands of Leek and to evoke a sense of the timeless richness of orchards and the role they have played in lives from the first days of Dieulacres to now

 

storytelling on a previous Apple Day

storytelling on a previous Apple Day

 

We’ll be drawing as well and making and generally encouraging people to enjoy the colours, tastes and delights of autumn as they ahve run like a stream of experience through the centuries….

Apple Day gets people involved....

Apple Day gets people involved….