Bowland Explorers

Forest of Bowland 2015-2016

A Very Special Meeting

Not lost, but exploring…

On Saturday 12 March 2016 we had the most amazing Very Special Meeting.  The Senior Explorers, helped by the fantastic Wild Rumpus and 240 Club Members, came together at Gisburn Forest on a quest to discover the whereabouts of our founder, the renowned, but somewhat eccentric, Gertrude Fulshaw-Smythe.  Read all about the day in our Field Report.  See who joined us for this expedition by viewing the Roll of Honour.

The Bowland Explorers Club on Tour

Lady Shonarella, Gladstone, Senior (Chaotic) Explorer Cath, Senior Explorers Melanie and Nick, James the Boy Explorer (or Sherpa James depending on whether he has shaved or not), Sophie and Stephie – Girl Explorers Extraordinaire, and Calvin the Camera (the Club’s official photographer) have had a wonderful time meeting hundreds of people eager to share the joy of exploring in Bowland.  We know that these new explorers will go on many an expedition of their own and will always proceed with curiousity!

Our Expeditions in 2015/16 took us to  the Museum of Lancashire in Preston; the Cloudspotting Festival in Gisburn Forest; Burnley Canal Festival; the Blackburn Heritage Festival; the  Winter Art Fair at Lytham Hall; Garstang Victorian Christmas Fair and Brockholes Nature Reserve near Preston.  Explorers of all ages shared their greatest adventures with us, made Explorer Badges and Journals, solved fiendishly difficult clues to help us find our founder  and helped us track down what lies at the end of the rainbow!   We are delighted that we have been able to welcome so many worthy members into the Bowland Explorer Club.

The Tribes of Bowland

Steve Fairclough, writer, storyteller, theatre practitioner and film maker, in the guise of Dr Ward ‘Story’ Stone, the ‘literologist’ and story collector, visited places in and on the outskirts of Bowland, meeting with people, gathering stories and observing and documenting the ‘tribes’ of the AONB.  You can read about his adventures, and the writing created from the experience, in the blog.

Branches of the Bowland Explorers

Brierfield Branch – The Mums2Mums group (part of Brierfield Action in the Community) worked with artists from In-Situ for their explorations into Bowland.  The group explored Downham, Clitheroe, Dunsop Bridge and Gisburn Forest documenting their experiences and creating materials to share their discoveries.  They also tested what ice-cream Bowland has to offer!  Read all about their adventures in the blog.

Burnley Branch – The Mechanics at Home group worked with artist Cath Ford.  They spent a day at Beacon Fell Country Park. Each explorer took an object of personal importance that was photographed in the forest and then they collected natural objects to photograph at home. Walking, picnicking, talking, getting lost, finding themselves, laughing, taking photos and drinking brews.  ‘Magical’ was the word used! They used the experience for sessions of art and craft based on their expedition.  Read all about their adventures in the blog.

Bolton Branch – Artist Dani Gaines worked with the Explorers branch in Bolton, otherwise known as, Foxes of the Fold.  If you visited us on tour you might have noticed the group’s work, namely our beautiful luggage tag tent decorations.  The group also worked on an installation for A Very Special Meeting, the very unique, and a little bit scary, Tree People.

Hambleton Branch – Working with Shonagh Ingram the Explorers branch in Hambleton created a Forest in a Day for their Gala in July 2016.