Treemendous Houses


Lord Horatio calling!

The idea of a treehouse has been steadily growing in the back of my mind to clear up some of the wood that has accumulated at Dawdle Hall following last year’s gales – seems a far cry when I see the sun shining brightly now.  

First I will need to consult an expert. Luckily I need look no further than my old friend and doyen of the landscaping world  Barry Walters. He is a wizard with wood and is fast gaining a reputation as the “go to” chap when it comes to castles in the air.

Above you will find a recent example of his craftsmanship. It gives a splendid view of the countryside around Arundel as well as giving a rather tired old trunk a new lease of life. Indeed tree houses have come a long way since I was a youngster.

I well remember the splinters and blackened thumb nails from nailing together odd planks to make a perilous perch from which to be “king” of all I surveyed. Which reminds me, Barry is also a dab hand when it comes to forts too – a must for the very young and young at heart.

Delving a little deeper into the subject I was amazed at the level of sophistication that can be had if money is no object. If you go down to the woods today in some parts of the world you are in for a very big surprise indeed. Join me in The Snug for some more woodland wonders!

Talking of woodland wonders, hats off to that great eccentric, Sir Ranulph Fiennes. I hear that at a ripe old age of he is learning how to shoot an English longbow. I imagine he will be spending a lot of time in the gym as you need big muscles. Apparently it’s all part of his research for a new book on the Battle of Agincourt.

Back in the 1400s these mighty weapons were state of the art and truly terrifying. They stood 6ft 6ins tall and shot 3ft long arrows over 200 yards. It took archers years to build up the strength. A typical longbow needed a force of around 140 pounds to draw and they had to do it again and again in battle.

I understand Sir Ranulph is writing a book on Agincourt because he had ancestors on both the French and English sides.  Eat your heart of oak out Robin Hood, I say!


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