Oaklands Woodcarving Club originally started in 1990 and like most as an adult education course but rising fees and the constraints of ‘red tape’ forced our founder members to form their own club. Today we have 40 members ranging in age, with each one having their own carving interest and level of skill. We meet every Monday 5pm to 9pm through the 31 weeks of an academic year, this is split into 2 terms , Spring starting early January for 18 weeks and Autumn which starts early September and runs for 13 weeks. Some members starting at 5pm and some at 7pm for a 2 hourly session (September to May) at OASIS ACADAMEY SCHOOL, ROMSEY ROAD, LORDSHILL, SOUTHAMPTON. SO16 8FA.
Unfortunately because of insurance restrictions we are unable to accept anyone under the age of 18.
During the Summer the club attends various local shows exhibiting the members work, demonstrating and promoting wood carving in general, and of course encouraging new members to join and have a go. At the moment the cost is £2.50 per night, ( this may change slightly each year) Beginners are welcome to come along to a club meeting to have a look and chat to the members, when you join we start you with a piece of wood and guide you through the techniques of carving a dolphin, ( the club emblem)
In all those 27 years there has not been a cross word between members; it is almost a family gathering, only better. You cannot choose your relatives but you can your friends. We have a comprehensive range of tools for members use although many have there own gouges, chisels and knives. Our members also have an extensive reservoir of knowledge, which they happily pass on. Each meeting we have a pin board, next to the kettle upon which are pinned items for sale, to give away, future events, talks etc.
As a club we attend several craft shows throughout the year in which we exhibit our work and demonstrate carving techniques. Oh yes and a lot of talking and drinking tea.
We have among our membership prizewinners of past Axminster Tool Shows namely Graham Limburn 2002 and 2003 and Fred Wilson 2004. It is interesting to note that 3 gold awards were given to two members, of the same club, three years running!
Every term we try to have a guest speaker or demonstrator; past talks have included Decoy duck making, ships figurehead restoration, gilding, soap carving and stick making. Most presenters are pleased to donate their fee to charity.
We are very keen to encourage ‘young blood’ into our club but convincing teenagers that wood carving is not an ‘ole duffers’ pastime and competing against their ‘opposite sex’ can be very difficult.
As mentioned our club is 27 years old and on 22nd May 2010 we celebrated our 20th aniversary with an afternoon party in a local Church Hall. In excess of 100 attended including current members, founder members, past guest speakers and representatives of other ‘wood’ clubs. A superb buffet was provided with wine, soft drinks, tea and coffee. Music was supplied from two local flutists and one of our members, Nigel O’Shaugnessy played a street organ made by him.
As a club, we have donated funds to Naomi House, a local children’s hospice and the party was a golden opportunity to hold a raffle and give the proceeds to our chosen charity. We managed to raise £350. The raffle prizes were donated, after some begging, from local individuals and business and ranged from a tin of biscuits to the use of a new Saab convertible for the weekend, donated by Saab of Southampton.
To celebrate our birthday we held an exhibition of members work with a show of 150 carvings. These were judged by all the guests to find the “ Peoples Choice Anniversary Carver”. The winning carving ‘ Green Lady’ in relief, carved by Fred Wilson received a trophy and a huge round of applause. The Green Lady’ was previously seen in Woodcarving magazine No 82 as the Gold Winner in relief won at the Axminster Tool Show of 2004.
To mark the occasion one of our lady members, Pippa Smith’ baked a wonderful birthday cake which was ceremonially cut by Jean Gordon one of our honorary members. Speaking of which we took the opportunity to award a few birthday honors namely Mary Adams, Faye Heath, Brian Williams and Fred Wilson for their dedication to the club and for their every present help and advice to the other members.
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT GRAHAM LIMBURN 02380 873540,
RICHARD TUTTON 02380 267652 or MIKE PASSFIELD 02380 893150