Wednesday, 14 July 2010

New Sail banners for SE groups

The regional sail banners arrived last week just in time to make their debute at Tolpuddle this weekend. The banners pictured above are for use by any group or district in the SE who want to promote Woodcraft Folk in the local communities at fetes, festivals etc. The banners are based around Woodcraft aims and principles. The faces on the brown banner represent international friendship, the green hands represent co-operation and the wings on the blue banner represent peace

Monday, 14 June 2010

Main points of SE committee meeting

The SER committee had a tele conference on 10th June 2010.

The main points of the meeting were:

* £200 given to help run Woodcraft Folk activities at Tolpuddle this year.
* £400 of grants given to help young people attend Southern Regions Camp. Further money may be available if all T shirts are sold.
* Regional Gathering confirmed in Brighton on 13th November due to inability to identify alternative venue.
* Feedback received about various issues relating to Southern Regions camp.
* Agreed to contact districts on training needs.
* Agreed to put workshop together for regional gathering exploring the practicality of putting together a regional resource of nightly programmes.

Tuesday, 8 June 2010

Latest news from SER

The SE regional committee has had a busy time recently. In May we organised a training weekend that doubled up as a site visit to the venue for the Southern Regions summer camp.

The May event saw Woodies from all over the region taking part in 1st Aid or Forest School training. This was well received and enjoyed by the participants. On Sunday members from South West districts joined us and took part in a site walk around and discussions on common policies etc.

The SER has commissioned a T shirt for sale at the camp and the funds raised will be used to assist places at camp for young people.

The committee has been looking for a venue for regional gathering in November outside of Brighton but central in the region. A provisional date of 13th November has been agreed.

The committee has made an application to Awards for All to fund some further Forest School training. And we should hear if we have been successful shortly.

We have commissioned an artist to design three sail banners for use within the region- based on themes of co-operation, peace and international friendship. The initial designs should be available next week.

The committee has also started to look at a new constitution for the region.

Wednesday, 29 July 2009

SER anti Nazi badges

The SER committee in response to recent events felt it would be useful to make new badges that pledge our collective opposition to racism and fascism. We had 50 button badges made (25mm diameter) and gave them out a Tolpuddle. They are all gone but if districts or members want them we can always get more made up.

SER sends message to Vestas workers

The following message of solidarity was sent to the 600 Vestas workers facing unemployment.
Dear Colleague

I am writing to you as the Chair of the South East Region Woodcraft Folk to extend our solidarity with you and other Vestas employees trying to defend their jobs and families against the threatened closure of the plants on the Ise of Wight and Newport.

It seems ludicrous to any right thinking person that this should be allowed to happen. Every day it seems there are new stories in the media of the threats of global warming and its impact upon the flora and fauna of the planet. The government itself has talked of the need to "green" the economy, and evidence shows that the government talks the talk, but doesn't walk the walk- a comparison of the "green" economy in Britain and Germany illustrates the point. It seems incredible that the government has stated it will create 400,000 green jobs in the next five years but is willing to stand by and allow such jobs and their incumbents to go to the wall. I note that the government is going to give Vestas £6 million for off shore development. This handout should be caveated with an insistance that the plants stay open.

The threatened closures are just one more vicious example of working people paying the price of the recession brought about by the bankers' and employers' greed.

I understand you are in court today. I wish you luck.

You are not just fighting for today, but also for the future. The Woodcraft Folk as a co-operative children's and youth movement understand and applaud your stand for the generations who will have to live with the consequences of a consumerist society and a class of people who put the buck before the needs of people and planet.

Yours in solidarity

Paul Bemrose
SER Chairperson

Saturday, 25 July 2009

SER Woodies at Tolpuddle 09

The Woodcraft Folk have been attending Tolpuddle for a number of years now, with our presence organised by members from the South West region. However, this year the usual organisers were unable to attend and members from the South East stepped in to help ensure our presence continued to be felt.

For the first time the Woodcraft Folk actually appeared (squuare logo and all) in the festival programme produced by the TUC. And although eventually the space allocated to us was inadequate for running some activities, the Folk made the best of it and invaded other open spaces to play parachute games! Activities the Folk provided included making gods eyes, singing, friendship bracelets and parachute games. All were well received by the young people who dropped in on activities. The SW members also tried to get a list of names together of interested adults who might want to help start a new group in Dorest.

The South East brought new button badges "Woodies against the Nazis" to give away, as well as pens (promoting the new SER website) and postcards that included the HQ phone number - should people want more information.

On Sunday the Woodcraft Folkdrawing members from Spelthorne, Portsmouth, Southampton, Brighthelmstone, Oxford, Bath, Swindon, Exeter and London joined the procession that marched through Tolpuddle. Placing ourselves at the back, we made a lively section of about 70 people with flags, banners, chants and singing. It was clear that bystanders and others in the procession knew we were there!

The afternoon finished at the stage set up in front of the martyr's museum with speeches from Brendan Barber and veteran socialist Tony Benn. This was followed by music from Transglobal Underground and the Bard of Barking- Billy Bragg.

It was a great weekend, enjoyed by all. Everyone felt it went well and the Woodcraft Folk were highly visible. Our numbers are growing year on year and it would be great to have more people from the South West, South East and London next year

Saturday, 4 July 2009

Sussex Pioneers Craft Camp

The craft camp was attended by 42 Pioneers from Hove, Eastbourne, Steyning and Brighthelmstone, over June weekend at Peter's farm at Kingston near Lewes in East Sussex. This event has been going for a number of years now and is always a well attended event.
The Pioneers did metalwork, recycled masks, digital photography and bushcraft (making stuff with wood and knives - spinners, tent pegs, cars ...). They also made little fires to cook their sausages on for dinner on Saturday night (eaten with chips and baked beans), then they baked bananas with chocolate in the embers of their fires. Later in the evening there was a campfire with songs. It was a lovely relaxed weekend which everyone- Pioneers and adults, really enjoyed.

Peter was great, giving lifts in the tractor and trailer and generally being very helpful (think he enjoyed it to and commented what lovely children they all were.