London Green Wood is open

After 3 months of coronavirus lockdown the workshop is open for coop members

From 4th July London Green Wood is open to coop members only. LGW aims to provide a covid safe workspace for members who feel comfortable to attend. Members are under no obligation to attend the workshop and those who are not yet able to, or do not want to, have the option of suspending their membership fee until they are ready to return.

Courses are due to restart from 28th July. Our monthly volunteering sessions are on hold for the time being. There will also be no public access in the near future, although we still welcome visitors by prior arrangement. If you’d like to come in and see what we do please contact us in advance.

We do not require anyone to wear masks, as we are able to maintain social distancing, but feel free to wear one if it makes you feel safer.

All those visiting the workshop are required to sign in and leave a telephone no. for track and trace purposes (for more information on how we will use this data, see our Privacy Policy).

What we ask of you before coming to the workshop:

  • Sign up to our online rota to tell us when you are coming in, so that we can limit numbers (provided by email to all coop members).
  • If you have symptoms of Covid-19 or have been exposed to someone who has tested postitive, stay home (how to request a test and what to do if you have symptoms).
  • If you can please travel to the workshop on foot or by bike. Car parking is available (subject to water works outside the park).
  • If you need to use public transport to access the workshop wear a face mask, as required by government guidance.

What we ask of you at the workshop:

  • Wash your hands upon arrival. Please also wash hands before eating, as usual.
  • Cleaning all tools after use and if passing to another person (anti viral wipes are provided). Wash hands before cleaning tools.
  • Maintain a 2m distance between yourself and others.
  • Bring your own PPE is needed (gloves for moving timber, fingerless gloves, masks and googles). Those wanting to use the linisher must bring their own PPE, this is not a excuse not to wear PPE where it is needed.
  • Wash your hands within the workshop before using the communal areas e.g. tea room and toilets.
  • No longer bring biscuits and snacks to share.
  • Until government track and trace system is fully operational, anyone who has used the workshop who subsequently tests positive for Covid-19 is requested to inform Jo Clarke or Dave Evers.

We will:

  • Provide an outdoor handwashing station (soap and water) within the workshop, alcohol gel and anti-viral wipes.
  • Limit the max. no. of people in the workshop, to allow for social distancing.
  • Send anyone home who becomes unwell at the workshop and advise them to follow the stay at home guidance.
  • Make signage in the workshop to remind everyone of these measures.
  • Designate a keyholder each day to take responsibility for Health and Safety, including coronavirus control measures.
  • Clean other objects and surfaces that are touched regularly on a daily basis, e.g. gate, padlocks, handwashing station.
  • If advised that anyone who has been at the workshop has developed Covid-19, we will contact everyone who has been at the workshop at the same time as that person and advise them of track and trace guidance.
  • Print these instructions and our coronavirus risk assessment so that they are available at the workshop.

Our risk assessments are available for other organisations and people to use and edit for non-commercial purposes only (this work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License).

Creative Commons Licence

Free wood for distant spoon carvers

Every Monday we are leaving wood out for carving at home.

Although the workshop is now closed, we have arranged with Hackney Council that we can visit the workshop once a week to prepare a supply of wood for isolating spoon carvers. Every Monday we will leave a box of spoon sized wood for anyone who’s carving at home to take away.

Please so do contact us asking if wood is left, the workshop is closed so we are not there on other days.

Please do not stockpile wood. We will leave wood out every Monday if we are able to. Make sure there’s enough to go around.

When the box is empty can the last person to take wood please recycle the carboard box and sign, so as not to create litter in Abney Park.

We’d love to see what you’re doing, please share your creations with us, Instagram @londongreenwood

See our tips for staying safe carving at home and further links to tools and resources.

Tips for carving at home

How to stay carving and stay safe at home

eBecause of Covid-19 we know that lots of people are stuck indoors wanting to start working in wood. Whittling and spoon carving are an excellent therapeutic, productive, useful and creative activities and we hope it will bring all those benefits to those who take it up. However it’s even more important to stay safe when learning at home with no teacher to keep an eye on you, so we’ve written some brief tips for carving at home. Some of these things are obvious it doesn’t make them less important and frankly neither does it make you more likely to do them.

  1. Sharpen your tools before you use them.
  2. Don’t use a folding knife for whittling or woodcarving, even one with a locking mechanism is not fail safe. We recommend Morakniv 120 for adults and Morakniv Rookie or Scout 39 Safe for kids.
  3. Do not carve with gloves on, or any type of kevlar finger barrier. Instead develop safe habits that protect your hands. We think that these kinds of finger guards are dangerous because they encourage bad practice. Instead develop safe habits that protect your hands.
  4. These knives for kids have slightly smaller handles but are just as sharp. The most important safety feature of a knife for kids or young people is a blunt tip. If you have a knife that didn’t come with a blunt tip you can grind it off on a course sharpening stone, the kind that people usually have for kitchen knives. This will drastically reduce injuries, and can be done for adults knives too.
  5. Find a safe space, other people and objects needed to be a full arms length away from you. Don’t work in a space where people, especially children, will be moving about around you.
  6. Obviously whittling outdoors is always better where you can.
  7. Whittling indoors is fine. Wood shavings (unlike sawdust) are clean and easy to sweep up, even on carpet. Just don’t walk through it in your socks or it’ll follow you everywhere.
  8. Kids and young people should be supervised at all times when they’re using a knife. There’s a reason you have to be 18 to buy one. Arguably adults should be supervised at all times when using a knife.
  9. Carving together is better, get into it with your household. Then your partner, family, flatmates won’t mind about wood shavings stuck to their socks and you can keep an eye on each other (see 7.).
  10. Even one drink is too many, make a choice between booze and carving.
  11. Carving green wood is easier because it is softer. The wood will dry quicker if it’s in small logs, has been split already, in near a heat source or in the sun, or a windy spot. You can keep wood in the freezer, this form of stockpiling is a long standing habit of many spoon carvers.
  12. Whilst you are making something you can keep in wrapped up in a damp plastic bag in the fridge in between carving sessions to keep it wet. This is very successful for few days after that the wood will start to go moudly. You can still carve mouldy wood, the wood will be fine once it’s been throughly dried out. You can soak pieces of wood or unfinished projects in buckets of water to re-wet them, but especially for larger spoons, kuksas etc. anytime you soak the wood you are increasing the risk of it cracking as it dries.
  13. Stop when you are tired.

Further links to tools and resources can be found here.


We are closed
from 24th March 2020

Because of the Covid-19 outbreak and following the government’s announcement, London Green Wood is closed to all for the foreseeable future. Really hoping to be back in a few weeks time. Unfortunatly this also means the end of our wood giveaways for isolating carvers. Hope everyone’s got some projects lined up at home.

Stroud Green Christmas Market

Sunday 15th December 2019

Locally grown gifts
for a plastic free Christmas

We were at Stroud Green Christmas Market to sell our wooden wares, including spoons, treadle powered turned bowls and decorated wands for budding wizards. Not to mention the antique sock machine.

Thanks to everyone who came to say hello, bought our crafts and joined in making their own locally grown tree decorations.

Stroud Green Market is on every Sunday throughout the year

Stroud Green School
Perth Rd / Ennis Rd
London N4 3H


Abney Park Autumn Fayre

  • Saturday 19th October 2019
  • 11 am – 4 pm
  • Free, All welcome

Spoon carving & Bowl turning
(demo all day)

Abney Park is looking forward to hosting a day of fun at their annual Autumn Fair. Come along and enjoy a variety of arts and crafts stalls, second-hand books, tempting food and drinks for all, arts & plant workshops, kids activities and music in the chapel. Plus – fabulous prizes to be won on the Abney Park User Group tombola! Proceeds raised will help fund future activities at Abney Park.

Lucie Gledhill – Jerwood Makers Open 2019

Art green woodworking
at London Green Wood

For some days, jeweler artist Lucie Gledhill joined us at our outdoor workshop in Abney Park to work on an unusual green woodwork project. Lucie is one of the five artists selected for the biennial Jerwood Makers Open 2019.

Jerwood Makers Open was established in 2010 to promote the significance of making and materials within the visual arts arena, seeking to support exceptional skill and imagination. It supports artists to freely develop creative ideas central to their individual practices. It looks broadly at how contemporary artists are defining or challenging the boundaries of what has traditionally been described as applied arts.

The artists were selected from over 300 applications in response to an open call for self-directed projects from UK-based makers and collaborators within 10 years of establishing their practice. Each artist receives a bursary to support experimentation and the making of new work for this exhibition.

We looking forward to see the final work at the Jerwood Makers Open 2019 exhibition, from the 19th June to the 18th August in Jerwood Space.

Jerwood Makers Open 2019
19 Jun – 18 Aug 2019

Jerwood Space
171 Union Street, Bankside
London SE1 0LN
=> Map

+44 (0)20 7654 0179