December 23 – Mary Stevens Christmas Coffee Morning and Jigsaw Festival

Well, it’s that time of year again when we are taking part in Mary Stevens Charity Coffee Morning and Jigsaw Festival, there were tables with various Christmas-themed items and a few tombola tables all for the benefit of Mary Stevens Hospice. Again it was nice to be invited along for this annual event and take part in the fundraising for the benefit of the hospice and the people who rely on it.
The stalls attending the event were showing a varied amount of items and were displayed to the best and people were able to get round the hall easily. In addition to this, a hot drink and cake stand was being used to its fullest by everyone who attended.

The weather for the day was very cold with snow being advised at some point, thankfully we had a stand inside the hall and not outside unlike the jigsaw gazebos. We had to be at the event by 9:00 to set everything up and be ready to start at 10:00 and was open during the hours of 10:00 and 14:00. The event attracted a steady footfall throughout the opening hours, although the weather could have caused a few not to show up.

We had a few of the normal crew to set up the event which included Ian, Rob, Steve and Brian, along with this we had a few members arrive during the day and help and support the event, they were, Arthur Roger S, Roger C, Paul & Barrie
A lot of turnings were as per normal donated by the club members for the charity table and those members who were selling their own pieces, gave a donation at the end of the day, out of their profits.

The club had a three-foot wood block snowman donated for a raffle, Tickets were sold at our last club meeting (Nov) and the Coffee Morning and Jigsaw Festival throughout the day, this was donated by Paul Wiley and it was appreciated by the committee for his generosity with all proceeds going to the hospice.

The ticket for the raffle was drawn at the end of the day by James from Mary Stevens Hospice. The winner was our own Elwyn Jones. The snowman raffle raised £79 for the hospice, Throughout the year the cub has raised a total of £1644.75 for the hospice over the last year, which has been handed over to the hospice.

We can now all look forward to the club’s Christmas Bash on our normal club night at Dudley College as usual.

Report by Barrie Fisher, edited by Steve Hackett

September 2023 – Mary Stevens Hospice Summer Fayre

Once again, we attended this very fun and enjoyable event that was held at the Mary Stevens Hospice grounds in Stourbridge. This is the second of three events we will be attending for Mary Stevens Hospice this year. The day started with us erecting the gazebos and setting up the tables within our allotted area. Unfortunately, we had no mains electrical supply, as we have had in previous years. But we were still able to use the lathe using a generator kindly loaned to us by Ian. We set up our usual charity table, with the member’s donated items in prime position and other items for sale by members who were taking part in the event with the club.

We were also joined by Ian’s wife Kim and Steve’s wife Georgina, who were selling their own homemade crafts.

The festival itself is a fundraiser to raise funds for patient care within the hospice. The theme for this year’s event was ‘Around the World, with the hospice grounds being transformed into an immersive experience for all visitors.

The event started with a parade, which featured motorcycles, classic cars, movie-themed cars, and a Cinderella pantomime float. The parade route was around Swinford Road, Love Lane, and Oakleigh Road to make a grand entrance into the hospice grounds at 11 a.m. to officially open the event.

Once open, visitors were invited to travel around the various stalls and take part in the tasty cuisine along with the live stage entertainment. There was a Nerf gun area, Stalls and food from around the world, a Jigsaw festival, a Toybarn Hoedown party, a BBQ, cakes, refreshments, and an Ice cream parlour. Also included were a football shooter game, a children’s entertainment area and the very popular Dog Show

We also set up the prize raffle for the skittle set, Which we turned as a group at our Saturday all-day workshop event back in April. It was front and centre on the stand, we have been selling the tickets during our last two events. The tickets were on sale throughout the day, and the raffle was drawn towards the end of the event by a Hospice staff member.

The winning number drawn was 15, it was won by Leanne from Wednesfield, Wolverhampton. Leanne was contacted by Greg to let her know the good news. The Skittles will be kindly delivered to Leanne by our club member, Roger Sherwood Howles.

Our stall was very busy throughout the day, with both the charity and member’s sale tables having many purchases. Steve kept the visitors and their children entertained with a live turning demonstration of spinning tops, which were given to the children for free. he turned over thirty tops during the event.

We were also visited on the stall by the Mayor of Dudley, Mayor Andrea Goddard. Who was very taken with Robert’s wand’s. Meanwhile, Arthur was entertaining her husband with his trick snapper game.

Overall, the Skittles raffle raised a total of £189. Along with money raised throughout this year:- The Charity table from the Summer fayre £447; The Sedgley flower show £97.00; plus some wood sales of £39.00. So we will be handing over to Mary Steven Hospice the total amount of £772.

The committee would like to thank all the members who came along to help out during the day. It does help us take some of the load off organizing and attending these event visits.

Report by Barrie Fisher, edited by Steve Hackett

August 2023 – Sedgley Garden Club Flower Show

This is the second year that we have been invited to take part in the Sedgley & District Community Association Garden Club, 28th Annual Flower & Vegetable Show.

Held at the Sedgley Community Hall. Thanks go to club member Richard for arranging for the club to attend again this year.

This event is held inside, so there is no need for the gazebos this time, and there is also no need to think about the weather. The door opened at 9 o’clock for us to get in and set up the area allocated to the turners. The room display was set up with the help of Steve, Rob, Roger C, Roger S, Arthur, Ian, Mike, and Barrie. We were the only ones within this room that had tables situated all around the room, in which we were able to put on a good selling display that covered five tables and included various turned items that were different for each seller.

In addition, there was the usual table space for the donations from club members that were made to raise money for Mary Stevens Hospice. Also, thanks go to Ian and Mike, who looked after this throughout the event.

The skittle set was set up on a separate table after Roger had to slip back home and pick them up; the raffle ticket sales went down well throughout the day, with the club being able to approach the £100.00 mark in ticket sales prior to the last selling day at Mary Stevens, Summer Fayre on the 2nd of September, where it will be drawn for the winner.

There was a craft competition in one of the other rooms, in which Steve, Rob, and Ian entered an item each. All of the judging of the events was done prior to the event opening; this craft event had a good many items entered. Congratulations must go to Ian for having his competition piece come in first with his rendering of Peaky Blinders Ducks.

In the main hall, where the flower competition was taking place, there were also plants and vegetables. These were judged during the morning and all awards were given prior to the general public being allowed in.

The event opened at 12:30 for the general public to have a good look around, to start taking part in the event, and to start buying items.

Arthur was in good flow again with selling his trick toys, which he sold out of all he had turned for the event. Thanks for that, Arthur.

After the opening of the flower show, we had a steady flow of people coming through, both looking and buying. We also had additional members turn up for the event to show their support.
The flower show put on a very good raffle, with over twenty good prizes on offer for those taking part.
Outside under two gazebos, the event put on a folk-type band with an area for people to sit and listen, The band put on three good sets and kept everyone interested.
We also had a couple of people who showed interest in the possibility of joining the club, so we will see if they turn up.
Overall, the event went very well and was enjoyable to take part in.

Report by Barrie Fisher, edited by Steve Hackett

April 2023 – Mary Stevens Easter Fayre & Coffee Morning

The event started at 10.00 and went on till 14.30, although we had to be on-site earlier to set up the tables in the center.

The turned items that had been given to the club as donations from members took up the charity table, it was very full of different types of projects.  Alongside this, we had two further tables which took up the work of six other member turners, in addition to this we had Ian’s wife Kim with her craft cards going under the name of ‘Kimskraft`s’ displaying and selling cards for various occasions. 

We had a steady footfall of people during the day coming and going, but not that many buying even on the charity table, signs of the economic climate at present I think.

Thanks go to all members who turned up on the day to add support and encouragement to the crew who were there for the duration of the event.  Thanks also go to the members who helped set up the equipment and all those that took it down.

At the end of the day with the charity table sales and donations from members present we were able to hand £105 to James from Mary Stevens Hospice.

Report by Barrie Fisher, edited by Steve Hackett

December 2022 – Mary Stevens Christmas Fair & Coffee Morning

Mary Stevens Hospice is the Black Country Wood Turners nominated charity that we raise money for throughout the year not the least at the two Mary Stevens main events per year being the Christmas & Summer fairs.

Prior to the event opening to the public, we set out four main tables to take the items for sale:

  • One charity table 
  • Two tables for the club members to sell their items.
  • One table for Kim’s Kraft (Ian’s wife) selling Christmas cards, boxes and decorative bags along with Ian’s turnings.

Opening times for the event were from 10.00 until 14.00.

The club members gave donations from part of their takings to go towards the charity pot.

In total, we had ten members turn up for the event to set everything up ready for the opening, With additional members joining us throughout the day to take in the event and have a chat, along with our newest member Bill.

The charity table is made up of club members turned items that they have donated to the cause of the charity, this table is used as a means of getting the general public to donate the amount that they think is appropriate for the item, nearly all the time with them giving more.

During the event, we had a steady stream of visitors into the event and from the look at some of the other charity tables being almost empty, it was a good successful event for them and gives them some much-needed funds.

At the close of the event, we were in a position to hand over a further £219.70 to be added to their overall funds.

September 2022 – The Mary Stevens Summer Fayre

The Black Country Wood Turners were pleased to be invited once again to put on a display at Mary Stevens Summer Fayre. The Fayre was held on Sept 3rd at the Mary Stevens Hospice Centre in Stourbridge

The day started out with the threat of thunderstorms which would put a dampener on the day (forgive the pun), this would have a big impact on the proceedings and the number of visitors and some exhibitors.

We started off by erecting four gazebos to protect against the weather, the tables and lathe were then put in place, at this point we need to thank Ian, Steve, Rob, Greg, Mike, Barrie and Roger, also to help set out the selling tables and charity table ready for the start of the open day.

After we had set up there were six tables of items up for sale, of which two were for charity. The lathe was set up in the middle of the other four tables with Steve again turning his spinning tops for the kids who came along with their parents. We also welcomed Steve’s wife Georgie with her Magical Makes of sewing and needle felting crafts.

The smell of the BBQ food stand was terrific, we were also entertained and serenaded all day by the excellent singing and music from the main stage. Lucky the weather stayed dry most of the day.

Arthur was in fine form with small toy tricks which went down well with both youngsters and adults alike, he also helped look after the charity table along with Roger, Mike & Greg.

During the day we had a steady stream of people wandering through the turning area with people also asking various questions and with the possibility of gaining a couple of new members.

At 15.15 the day came to a complete finish when the clouds opened up and we had a complete down-pore which caused us to start packing up very quickly with the turned items before we started on the units themselves.
Our thanks go out to all who helped out by pulling the gazebos down and storing them away safely we were all a bit damp by the time we got in our cars to go home.

Thanks go to all members who have contributed to the charity table, helped out on the day and visited the event to say hello and show the event support.

Special thanks go to Ian for supplying everyone with tea and coffee throughout the day, which went well.

We have already had a good start to the charity donations from the event held at the Sedgley Flower Show with a good starting point of £115. The total we have raised over these 2 events for Mary Stevens Hospice is £431

Report by Barrie Fisher, edited by Steve Hackett

Sedgley Garden Club Flower Show August 2022

The Blackcountry Wood Turners were pleased to be invited to put on a display by the Sedgley Garden Club at their Annual Flower Show held at the Sedgley Community Centre. We had a good day with a lot of interest in our display and the live turning demo of turning spinning tops for the kids. There were many sales. and at the end of the day, we had made £115 for our charity Mary Stevens Hospice.

Thanks to all members who have contributed to the charity table, helped out on the day and visited the event to say hello and show us some support.

The Sedgley Garden Club members put on an excellent display of fruit and vegetables, many of which were given to us for free at the end of the show.

We would like to thank the Sedgley Garden Club for the invitation and we hope to see you again next year.

Report by Steve Hackett

Mary Stevens Charity Coffee morning December 2021

The day started with a small number of Black Country Woodturners members being in attendance to erect the stall area and the covers due to being in a position outside due to Covid rules.

Apart from the charity table which was the main part of the event we also had a number of members (Mel, Steve, Rob, Ian & Barrie) in addition to a couple of members items but could not be with us in person, to sell their own turned items, which included some Christmas items.

From items that members had sold, we had a 10% donation which went with the charity table amount to hand over.

A big thank you from the committee goes out to all club members who gave their time and effort to produce the donated items for the charity table.

The day itself was very cold which kept a number of people away from the event, but thankfully the rain kept away and we did have a steady stream of people passing through and buying the odd piece.

Ian looked after the charity table along with anyone who was free a the time and in the area of the table.

Ian’s wife Kim was also in attendance selling her Christmas cards table decorations and presentation bags which she had produced herself.

All in attendance also helped to take the equipment down whilst Ian sorted the funds to be handed over.

Report by Barrie Fisher and edited by Steve Hackett

Mary Stevens Charity Summer Event September 2021

Today we were at Mary Stevens Park for their open day. The event was open to the public from 10.00 till 16.00 hours.  It is a charity event organised by Mary Stevens Hospice as a fundraiser for their organisation.

The Black Country Woodturners put on a charity table of turned items that were donated by the members, for the purpose of helping the hospice in fundraising.  At the same time, we are able to put our own turnings onto the tables of which 20% of the takings are also donated back to the charity.

After the chaos of setting up the tenting area with three units, we had eight tables with a good mixture of various items for sale during the day.

The charity table was totally full and needed an additional table to display the items donated by the members.

The club had a good turnout of members who all had a good selection of turned items for sale.  We also had a lathe running and was manned by Steve who kept up a stream of spinning tops for the kids free of charge, this kept him out of mischief for the day.  It must be said that he was tired at the end of the day, but it was for a good cause.

During the morning there was a steady stream of people going through the selling area with the charity stall doing very well and clearing a number of items.  During the day we also had a good many people taking our club cards with a number being interested in starting to turn, it’s a case of watching this space for this, we were also asked about the club and how the items were formed and developed.  The weather was very kind to us during the day, with it being sunny which also helped with the turnout of people who attended the event.

Along with the turned items we also had a couple of wives joining us,  Ian’s wife Kim & Steves’s wife Georgina, who had their own craft stalls of hand-crafted items along with us.

A big thank you must go out to all who turned up for the event and helped throughout the day with setting up, selling, and breaking down again.  This help was very much appreciated with us being able to clear the site quickly.

We raised a total of £244.72 from the charity table, and from the club members the sale items we raised £90.00 at 20% commission, this makes a total of £334.72 that was handed over to The Mary Stevens Hospice.

Report by Barrie Fisher and edited by Steve Hackett

Presentation at Mary Stevens Hospice 28th May 2021

Today we are at Mary Stevens Hospice to present the Wig stands that were turned by the club members for the people who are undergoing treatment for illnesses who also need additional help with other areas of their treatment and wellbeing.

Those present for the handover were Roger Cheshire, Stephen Hackett, and Barrie Fisher, committee members of the Black Country Woodturners Club.  James Totney, the community, and events fundraiser from Mary Stevens Hospice accepted the Wig stands from us on behalf of the hospice. James stated that it was a pleasure to accept them and was impressed with the craftsmanship being displayed.

At the handover we undertook a photoshoot of the Wig stands and people present, James also had Beth come along for the event. 

He also stated that he is looking forward to the visit by the club for the summer fair being held in September.  In addition, he confirmed we would be able to have an area for the items that we can turn for the charity to sell, so they can gain additional funds for the Mary Stevens Hospice.