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Bodgers Ball

The Bodgers Ball is the yearly meeting and AGM of the Association of Pole-lathe Turners & Greenwood Workers. The last time I went must have been about 17 years ago, but after spending so much time on the bodgers forum this year I thought I would put faces to people.
In reality it is not just an AGM as we know them, but a mini festival; a coming together of like-minded people to share knowledge and to have a bloody good time. There were a few stabbings, but just minor ones, and self inflicted! It also held one of the best attended AGMs I have been to, as well as the shortest, which is strange as it was also converting itself into a limited company. Defiantly a well run committee.
I have never driven so far to meet a bunch of people that I have only previously met in cyberspace. At least it was, as always advised, in a public space. I also almost forgot, these people are probably the best armed of any, with the most fascinating array of very sharp edge tools.

I was one of the many people demonstrating, but the only person making fan birds which I think went down a treat.

I entered some of the competitions and actually won a first prize in the Field and Craft section for my green oak dragonfly.

Early one evening I went over to see Paul and made my first pole-lathe turned bowl. It went surprisingly well, as Paul was a good teacher. Mind you – I did have a slight advantage as I have been using a pole lathe for over 17 years. It is not easy to relax when learning a new tool or technique, and looking at my hands in this photo, I do not think I could grip that chisel any harder.

Ten people made their own pole lathes over the weekend, I will be knocking one up soon!

We had an auction, mainly of tools. The auctioneer who was from Dorset was very entertaining, sorry I can not remember your name. Yes, I did buy a big box of old tools and I think I got a bargain. The two chaps at the bottom left of the picture are Robin on the left, and Mark in the middle. I have been following their blogs for some time.

Where else would you find a bar still working after the marquee has been taken down by the hire company? Most people left on late Sunday afternoon and this photo was taken at about 8.30pm.

I like this one; a fairy circle? No this was the whittling circle many of the shavings made by Robin Wood’s whittlers.

All in all it was a fantastic weekend and an event well worth going to. If you read this blog, do come and say hi to me at next years ball, which should be nearer Devon.