Latest News - A line up to get your scythes singing!
The reigning UK scything champion Andi Rickard will be giving a peening demonstration as well as being around in the field to answer queries and help with mowing techniques.
John Grundy - expert scyther from the North of England will also be about to help folk hone their skills and run a beginners session.
Charlie Quinnell is back giving a talk and demonstrating amongst other things scandanavian scythes.
Will Sutherland will be talking about his 60 years of experience with the Northumbrian/Scottish A frame style of scythe which he still makes and uses to this day.
Fiona Guest of Scotia seeds is going to talk on Meadow creation and management and will be happy to answer meadow related questions.
Monica Griesbaum of Windy Hollow Organic Teas will be running a tea growing and tasting session.
All the above will happen alongside a competition, sales from both Scythe Cymru and The Scythe Shop, food and drink, a practice area and scythes to borrow on the day. Calling all Scythers! The Scottish Scything Club for the third year runninginvite you to the largest scything event in Scotland, to be held at Blackhaugh Farm on Saturday 24th July, 2021 We are once again reaching out to every scyther and scythe enthusiast across Scotland to come together for the Festival - to chat, mow, share ideas, compete and most of all to have loads of fun. We are asking everyone to book their tickets in advance to avoid delays on the day. We wont be able to let anyone in on the day without a previously booked ticket.
What’s on offer? - A practice meadow to hone your skills - Fun taster sessions for novices - A scything competition - A children’s area with lots of straw - Scythes and related kit for sale - A Burger van with gluten free and vegan options - Drinks, cakes and salads - Presentations and talks - Membership of the Scottish Scything Club - Camping option for Friday and Saturday nights with campfire
What to bring?The Festival takes place on a working farm so you are advised to wear outdoor clothing and footwear. Please bring your own scythe but most importantly (whether you are a novice, an old hand or voyeur) bring with you a desire to celebrate the scythe. A cup, plate and seat will also be helpful and if you are staying over then you will need to bring all your food and alcohol.
Fancy a Sleepover? There are camping and campervan spaces available on the Friday and Saturday nights on a first come first served basis. We will have a fire to sit round, be sociable, play music and chill out. Please bring any food or drink that you want for the duration. The facilities are basic - just a tap and a couple of compost toilets. When booking your spot please remember to tell us if you plan to stay on just Saturday or just Friday or both AnD if you will have a tent or van or other?
How to book? To buy tickets and join the club click on the 'buy tickets here' link above - For more information about the Scottish Scything Club, buying tickets, the day and evening’s activities or to offer some of your time to help out then please email Rob Brodie firstname.lastname@example.org.
We tried three times to run the event but each time something got in the way. This has not stopped many scythers across Scotland from getting out and mowing the sward, individuals, community groups, families, novices, experts alike. We continue to enjoy the skill on rough hill land, market gardens, orchards, show gardens, pathways and road verges. Lets keep up the amazing work and carry on looking forwards. Thanks to all and remember - Scythe Safe and Stay Sharp!
Round up of 2019 Festival
The last weekend of July 2019 saw the first ever Scottish Scything Festival take place at Blackhaugh Community Farm in Perthshire. Guests started to arrive on Friday afternoon and got stuck into some last minute sign painting and marking out of areas, there was a fire that evening with lots of scything chat and beer and cider sampling. On Saturday braving an ominous forecast and in some cases driving through torrential downpours to get there, 120 people, including 20 or so children gathered for a day of talks, demonstrations, taster sessions, scythe sales and of course a scything competition. The day itself was dry and by the afternoon the weather was glorious, with hot sun shining on bucolic scenes of children playing and folk chatting leaning on scythes. Talks on ‘Scything in Transylvania’, ‘Scandanavian scything’, ‘Peening’ and 'Making hay in Europe' were all well attended and led to much interesting debate, while beginners and experienced scythers alike took the chance to try out new blades, improve their skills and find out how to bring old scythes back into action with the help of various volunteer experts and enthusiasts. Among the scythes present were Swiss, Norwegian, Scottish, Austrian, Italian, and Bulgarian models. The small shop selling scythes and accessories almost sold out and the wild game/vegan burger van had a sell out day too. The afternoon’s competition had 29 entrants and through lodged and tough sward we were treated to some fine displays of speed and technique with the overall winner John Pears being presented the Scottish Scything Champions wooden quaich (see below for scores). The traditional scythe versus strimmer competition formed the climax of the afternoon when it was proved once more that the scythe is faster and does a better job than the strimmer. Another bigger and livlier fire formed the centre of things on Saturday evening with Gaelic and English songs, some scrumptious foraged food and more sampling of soft and alcoholic drinks. Such a lovely weekend filled with a real buzz of enthusiasm and excitement for all things scythe related – everyone is now looking forward to next years event which is planned for the same place and same time.
Competition Results Mowing a 5m X 5m square. Using the Gairloch Gathering scoring method – time in seconds plus quality score (best 1, worst 20, multiplied by ten) equals final score. The lowest points win. 1st John Pears – 4.13(253secs) 8 x 10 (80) total points – 333 2nd Jim Mcvittie – 4.43(283secs) 6 x 10 (60) total points – 343 3rd Rudenko Velinov – 5.48(348secs) 3 x 10 (30) total points – 378 4th Richard Wilson – 4.05(245secs) 17 x 10 (170) total points - 415