Stories that take you into nature - and into your heart

The woods are full of stories. Walk with us and listen.
ScreenPLAY invites you on a wellbeing journey through the woods at Thomas Hardy’s Birthplace. Plug in your headphones, point your phone camera at the QR code to launch and click on Mr Hardy, Mrs Hardy or any icon to listen.
Rites of Way with Mr Hardy has been developed in partnership with the Thomas Hardy Society and Dorset Council, with funding from the Heritage Lottery, Dorset Council and the Gulbenkian Rural Fund.

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Zap the QR code or click for a link

Rites of Way with Mr Hardy is a guided walk on time trodden paths. It is a journey into nature and into ourselves.
Listen to the woods, to the birds, to the wind in the trees, and the crunch of the leaves. When you have found that still place inside you, listen to stories we have curated.
Let Thomas Hardy’s words and the Celtic tree tales heighten your feelings about this place. Let yourself feel each character’s feelings, and have a deeper connection with the ancient stories of the trees.

Connect with feelings of joy, sadness and remembering, to take you deeper inside yourself. Doing so in the ancient woodland anchors those feelings in a special place, allowing you to return and experience them again in a safe way.
Listen again and find deeper meanings and connections, even at home in your armchair.
We are the creators of our journey.
We decide which path to take.

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Podcasts from the wood through the seasons

The Hazel coppice

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Woodman Alan Brown, pictured here at Thorncombe Woods in 2006 was the sixth generation of his family to make wattle hurdles out of split rods from a hazel coppice. The family tradition now continues with his son Steve. In this podcast, Alastair Nisbet discusses the ancient craft whose roots go back to the days of the flint axe. Click the audio to play and the images below to enlarge.
Next: When you have an illness that’s going to affect your life it makes you appreciate the beauty around you… artist Maggie Curtis.
Tools of the trade: billhooks
Hurdle maker Alan Brown at work in 2006
Weaving the split rods in and out of the sails
another piece of split rod
beat it down firmly
another hurdle done
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