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07791 258 402

about us

 

Creative Craft Retreats is a new venture run by Melanie and Simon Osborne at Little Dinworthy near the North Devon village of Bradworthy. Both highly skilled crafts people in their own right, they have for many years shared a dream to run craft workshops practising alongside other select tutors with a wide range of creative, arts & crafts and natural history backgrounds.

 

Melanie was trained in art and design then as a studio potter and ran her own workshop for many years. She also has experience in garden design, interior design and currently assists Simon with all the design aspects of his renovation business.

 

Simon trained as a carpenter from an early age and is now a master craftsman skilled in all aspects of building. A passion for making things out of green oak and for woodland bodgery (the traditional art of green woodworking) has grown over the years and his skills and knowledge are now vast.

 

When they moved to Little Dinworthy in 2002 - a house in need of repair, set within 42 acres of farmed grass land with little biodiversity - they knew they had a lot of work ahead of them, but the dream to create a wildlife haven, and one day a Creative Craft Retreat, had begun…

 

Over the past 8 years, buildings have been repaired and updated (still an ongoing project!), workshops made from scratch, organic fruit and vegetables grown, cottage gardens created, a lake dug and 26 acres of broadleaf English woodland planted.

 

Thanks to these efforts, the wildlife population has increased dramatically and the land now supports a huge biodiversity of species including butterflies, dragonflies, frogs and toads, foxes and badgers, barn owls and cuckoos, and a large variety of wildflowers including orchids. Melanie and Simon are currently looking into possible sites to encourage the endangered marsh fritillary butterfly.

 

It is Melanie and Simon’s passionate desire to combine the enthusiastic teaching of creative skills in tranquil, relaxing, inspiringly beautiful, natural surroundings, with the experience of enjoying delicious home-cooked food that has been locally sourced to support the community and care for our environment.

 

  • Simon and Melanie Osborne
  • Woodland
  • House from across the pond in early Spring
  • Tying up hazel bean sticks