£185

Early Summer Forage and Wild Food Feasting

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Canterbury and surrounding coast

Canterbury and surrounding coast

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Refund Policy

Refund Policy

Refunds up to 30 days before event

Event description

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This course takes place over one highly informative, enjoyable and full-on foraging day, typically lasting for between 12 and 13 hours (the time goes really fast!) and involves foraging for plants, seaweeds and fungi, as seasonally available (not animals, fish or shellfish). We will explore different habitats, for example, woodland, arable land, river bank, waste ground, salt marsh and seashore (visiting at least 3 such habitats during the course). The aim is to provide a general introduction to seasonally available wild plants, how to harvest them sustainably and safely to utilize them as food, including drinks (learning about between 25-60 botanicals). Nevertheless, a general introduction does not imply that the information provided is only basic. Obviously, there are many toxic plants that can be rendered edible and, although due to time constraints such procedures cannot be carried out on a course, information may be provided on how to carry out such activities for those wishing to take things further e.g. leaching out oxalates, saponins and tannins from various roots and nuts. On each course we will usually look at and practice one of the following preserving techniques: pickling, smoking, salting (krauting and lacto-fermenting), whilst also making something that you can take away with you. In addition, a seasonal alcoholic drink will be made for you to take home. Lunch is served inside with a range of deliciously cooked seasonal wild food that you will have collected. Dinner is cooked on an open fire and includes the sampling of between 4 and 10 different seaweeds. I like to encourage people to get involved with the cooking. However, because these courses are tailor-made to meet your requirements, you don’t have to cook at all!

Seasonal comment from a past participant: June

"Our foraging day was a rich experience – not only providing an introduction to food foraging, but also good company out in the fresh air with my fellow foragers and yourself who proved to be an entirely convivial guide. I was bowled over by your sheer enthusiasm, enviable knowledge and deep respect for wild food and its environment. Even more impressive was the energy you invested and effort that went to in planning the day and the food treats he produced along the way to keep our energy levels up – ah those cherry chocolate mushrooms and the birch tree sap drink. We left with an alcoholic drink, carefully cradled in our bags, stuffed with dog rose and elderflower blossom which we foraged. Part of the Kent countryside and the fruits of the summer bottled for a treat three weeks hence.

And what fantastic post course information you sent. Thank you so much and for your excellent tutoring in foraging on Saturday. You were fab.

I do admire what you are doing hugely.

All best Kay"

FAQs

Are there ID or minimum age requirements to enter the course?

16 years old - 75 years old

What are my transport/parking options for getting to and from the event?

We will be meeting on the steps of The Goods Shed in Canterbury, see location map below:

https://www.google.co.uk/maps/dir/''/the+goods+shed+canterbury/@51.284551,1.0063029,12z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m8!4m7!1m0!1m5!1m1!1s0x47decbb6a514c21d:0xd761f1e48043a363!2m2!1d1.0763425!2d51.2845719

Although The Good Shed has a large car park, it is not possible to park there for the day. There are, however, additional paid parking fascilities in the same street. For those arriving by train, The Goods Shed is right next door to Canterbury West station.

What can I bring into the event?

Good walking boots, Wellington boots (for seaweed washing in the sea - although you can go bare foot), a full set of waterproofs, and perhaps a notebook and camera

How can I contact the organiser with any questions?

ferguspd22@hotmail.com

What's the refund policy?

Full refund if given 1 month's notice

Do I have to bring my printed ticket to the event?

Yes

Can I update my registration information?

Yes

Is my registration fee or ticket transferrable?

Yes

Is it ok if the name on my ticket or registration doesn't match the person who attends?

Yes

MORE FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT MY COURSES MORE GENERALLY

Can you provide a gift voucher in addition to just the Eventbrite ticket?
Yes I can, although it is my hope that you'd feel inspired to get creative and make one, perhaps using photos and pictures from my website.

Where do courses take place?
General foraging courses: During the course we visit various places such as woodland, river bank, salt marsh, seashore etc all within approximately a 10 mile radius of Canterbury in Kent. We will meet either at The Goodshed in Canterbury or at Herne Bay train station. It depends on the particular courses date, as where we meet depends at what time the low tide is on the day.

Fungi course: We will be meeting at Canterbury Westgate Station. Although in 2017 I may run some courses in the Ashdown Forest. In the latter case, those without cars will be picked up from East Grinstead train station, and those with cars will meet me in Wych Cross near Forest Row, East Sussex.

Acorn course: Location to be decided.

Seaweed course: Location to be decided.

How long does it take to get there from central London?
From London Victoria to Herne Bay, by train, 1 hr 24 mins – 1 hr 37 mins (1 hr 55 mins if driving)
From London St Pancras to Canterbury West station, by train, 51 mins (1 hr 45 mins if driving)
From London Victoria to East Grinstead, by train, 58 mins (1 hr 35 mins if driving)

Hello. Your courses / experiences look fantastic, i wanted to buy them as a gift for my mum and dad. They are both quite active and enjoy walking etc, but i'd like to understand first how much walking, steps, bending down, crawling about on hands and knees are involved in the day?
On the day of the course we visit between 3 and 6 different habitats, such as woodland, riverside, salt marsh, and the coast to collect seaweed. We generally travel by car between locations, so during the day there is no prolonged walking beyond 5-10 mins at a time. There are many rests in between as we stop to harvest, taste, or talk about wild plants. The amount of bending down depends on the time of year. In fungi season (October) there is probably more bending and kneeling than at other times of the year. On general foraging courses bending is not necessary (unless you find it easier to do so), although during the summer courses we may be pickling salt marsh plants for 30 mins, and these do require bending and kneeling (or just sitting).

Do I need to be very fit to take part?
A general average to good level of fitness is required. Having said that, I have had several people that don’t quite meet this ideal and it has still been fine. There is no really sustained walking as there are constant pauses to collect or talk about individual plants.

When is the best time to come?
This is quite hard to say because the answer will depend on your particular interest. In terms of the range of botanicals, there are a few more plants to see in April and May. However, if you are particularly interested in finding out what's available in early spring then March is the month for you. Similarly if you specifically want to know what's around in late autumn/early winter then late November and December courses would be your best choice. On all courses no matter what the date there is far far more available than we can see/find in one day. Each month brings a wealth of unique botanicals, and different ways to engage and play with them. My emphasis is as much, if not more, on quality of experience and hands-on engagement with the botanicals we do encounter, in addition to covering a substantial range. As a very general rule, spring courses (April-May) are best for salad greens and leafy vegetables and roots; summer (Late May - August) are best for seaweeds; September courses are best for fruits, seeds, berries; and autumn courses (Oct-November) are best for fungi. Nevertheless, on all course we will nearly always encounter seaweeds and fungi.

A 12-13 hour course sounds very long to me, I'm not sure I want to do such a long day?
In my experience and the experience of countless course participants, the time really flies by. There is so much to see and do that on one level it will seem like about 5 hours, then when you reflect on what you have learned it will seem like 2 days.

Who attends the courses, and can I come on my own?
Only the best and most discerning people attend my course! The courses are for adults, although occasionally older children do attend. People come from all walks of life, some with lots of wild food knowledge, but most with just a bit or almost none. Individuals come on their own, Couples come, as do family and friends, so the group on the day will be a mix of people.

I'm a raw vegan, will I get much from this course?
Indeed. Most diets can be catered for. On all courses I do cook fish in the evening, but alternatives are available.
The emphasis of the course is on harvesting and utilizing wild botanicals: plants, fungi, and seaweeds, and I talk about how to use them both raw and cooked (when safe and appropriate to o so). On the day we will be both using raw ingredients as well as cooking them.

How much does the course cost?
General Foraging course: For the full 12-13 day it costs £185 per person.
Fungi Forays: (9am-6pm) £135 per person.
Acorn course: £115 per person
The Art of Seaweed: £115 per person

Do I need to take notes or take pictures with my camera?
You are free to take notes and pictures. Although I send out considerable post-course information to include photos of all we have seen (if possible) that includes links to further information, it can be useful, of course, to take your own notes and pictures of individual plants in the order that we find them.

Can I bring my dog, it's only very small and won’t be a problem?
I love dogs, but in general, unless the dog fits in your pocket the answer has to be “no” simply due to lack of space. However, on each course I take 6 of the 10 participants paying full price in my car (we need to travel between the different habitats), and ask for an additional driver to help take the other 4 participants (at a £20 discount for the driver). If you are that driver, then, yes, bring the dog as well..

I know this might sound a bit weird, but I've got a pet rock called Rocky. She's about the size of a football so shouln't take up too much space, and she won't be any trouble as I only need to feed her every 15 minutes. Would it be OK to bring her along?
Absolutely no problem at all.

Can you recommend a place to stay the night before/after the course?
Please scroll down to the bottom of this page for some possibilities.
http://fergustheforager.co.uk/courses/
Please note: I have not stayed in any of them, it is just a list I collated, some of them, if you are lucky, may be like Faulty Towers.

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Date and Time

Location

Canterbury and surrounding coast

Canterbury and surrounding coast

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Refund Policy

Refunds up to 30 days before event

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