Workshop Schedule

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Workshops 2015

Cave Painting (half day) with Madeleine Allison 1st August 2015, £35, 10-1pm

Explore the ancient painting techniques used by cave dwellers.  Use natural pigments to make your own unique cave painting panel to take home.

Please note that this workshop cannot be booked online. If interested please call 02392 598838 to make a booking over the phone.

cave painting 2

Bronze Sword workshop with Neil Burridge Sat 8th Aug, £180

Work on your own 26″ Ewart Park sword.  This leaf blade sword is one of the most prolific swords from the British Bronze Age.   In this workshop you will clean and finish your blade, forge the edges on it and look at different handle and scabbard types with information

Please note that this workshop cannot be booked online. If interested please call 02392 598838 to make a booking over the phone.

ewart park sword

Make a Silver Wrist Torque with Neil Burridge Sunday 9th Aug, £80

The Bronze Age metal workers in Britain reached new artistic heights with the forging and twisting of bronze and gold in the manufacture of torques, pins and bracelets.  Under Neil’s expert guidance you will be using the same techniques and working with 2.4 mm square sterling silver rod to make your own bracelet with twisted body and forged terminals.This is a practical, ‘hands on’ workshop designed for people with no previous experience.

Please note that this workshop cannot be booked online. If interested please call 02392 598838 to make a booking over the phone.


Children, make a feast in a roundhouse with Madeleine Allison £20 on 12th August 10am – 1pm

Make a feast over the fire in the roundhouse using ancient styles of over 2000 years ago.


Medicinal Herbs Through Time with Laura Uphill £60 Sat 15th Aug

A look at medicinal plants & their uses through time. How much has the use of local & garden plants changed when treating disease? In this class we will look at, taste, use, discuss & make herbal preparations as they did then & as we do now.


Pit Firing Ceramics Workshop with Mary English Marsh Heritage (2015 Award Winner: Craft Trainer of the year) £120 for 3 half days 16, 22 and 23 August 10am – 1pm

Create your own ceramic pot and learn how to use a pit fire to colour it.  This will create a wonderful unique piece for you to take home.

During this workshop the ancient art of pit-firing ceramics will be explained in a historical and contemporary setting. You will create your own work in clay and return the following week to fire the work in an open air situation. All tools and materials provided – no previous experience required.

  • Day 1 – Create the pots (approx 3 hours)
  • Day 2 – Fire the pots. (approx 2 hours)
  • Day 3 – Return to collect the finished pots and have time to explore Butser Ancient Farm.



Pit firing is a modern adaptation of an age-old method and is an active collaboration with the elements of earth, wind and fire.  In a pit, in the earth or sand, unglazed ceramic sculptures are placed on a bed of wood shavings. Organic materials such as coffee grounds, banana peels and seaweed are placed around the work, as well as copper wire and steel wool; these materials will contribute colour to the ceramics as they burn.  The ceramics are then covered with firewood and lit.  Once the wood is vigorously burning the pit is covered with metal sheeting to retain the heat. Though the fast and hot fire tests the ceramics to the limit of their tolerance and contributes to a high breakage rate, the successful pieces make the loss rate worthwhile.  The warm reds, pinks, blues and yellows that result from the collaboration with the fire and air make each unique piece embody the colours of the earth.

Vessel large ceramic pit firing

Flint Knapping with Bob Turner Sat 12th Sep

Discover how our ancestors made tools out of the stones in the ground.Learn to understand flint as a material and how to knap and work it to make ancient tools.Discover the talents and skills of ancient Britons and go home with a flint tool you have made yourself.


Archaeology Illustration with Bob Turner £50 Sun 13th Sep

Ideal for anyone interested in archaeology, who would like to learn more about how to illustrate your findings.  Perfect for students of archaeology to learn this important skill.


Felt Wall Hanging workshop, with simple Celtic Cooking (includes lunch)

with Madeleine Allison

Saturday 26th July, £60, 10-2.30 pm 

Learn the fascinating art of making felt with raw materials from ancient breeds of local sheep and soap. Create a stunning wall hanging to take home.

The Felt Pictures 001



Make a Coracle with Ryan Watts

Make your very own one man boat to take home at the end of the day.

Experimental Archaeology with Ryan Watts

Butser Ancient Farm was the driving force in the development of experimental archaeology.In this interesting workshop you will:

  • discover the two elements of experimental archaeology
  • learn the difference between archaeological experiments and living history and
  • design and create your own experiment and test it out

Archaeology with Maisie Marshall

A 2 day weekend course to learn all about archaeology, with the uncovering of a metre test pit with full excavation and evaluation.

Backyard Bronze Age with Fergus Milton

A short practical course aimed at people wanting to set up their own Bronze Age style metalworking setup in their own garden. Includes furnace design and construction. Making crucibles and moulds. Simple bellows design. Obtaining ores for smelting. Suppliers for all the other items you will need. Safety considerations for Bronze Age metalworking at home

Early Copper Smelting with Fergus Milton £90 on Saturday 27th June, 10-4pm – fully booked.

A practical day spent learning about the background to early metals technology including a large practical session where you will carry out one of mankinds greatest discoveries – transforming metal-bearing rocks into beautiful copper metal. After your labour on the bellows powering the simple furnaces, search for the beautiful metal as a unique souvenir of a magical day.


Primitive Bronze Casting  with Fergus Milton £95 on Sunday 28th June 2015, 10-4pm – Fully Booked

A hands-on day learning how our ancestors learned to transform rock into metal and then transform the metal into any object they could imagine.Ahead of the course you’ll be sent some beeswax and instructions to guide you into making a simple model and on the day itself this will be turned into a final bronze item. Also covered will be the background to early metals technology.

2010-11-25 09.28.54


Early Metalworking Technology with Fergus Milton £350 for 4 days from Friday 3rd to Monday 6th July 2015

During late spring or early summer, a 4 day workshop will take place at Butser, aimed at those with a strong interest in early metalworking technology. Through a series of presentations for background information and practical workshops, participants will gain an in-depth appreciation of this subject.

Practical sessions will include – making and firing crucibiles and other refractories. Furnace construction. Bellows construction. Smelting and Casting.

Further details available by sending an email expressing interest to


Ancient Cooking with Madeleine Allison £35 half day workshop on 4th July (Includes lunch) – Fully Booked

Ancient style cooking, making lunch to eat together, using gathered and grown ingredients in the roundhouse. Cooking over the fire and looking at a variety of cooking styles over the eras of 2000 years ago.