Exhibition open

Today sees the opening of  ‘The Art of Basketry’ exhibition at The Gate in St Clears which is running until July 14 2012. Prue, Helen and Annie worked very hard at arranging and hanging the exhibition which looks wonderful.

The exhibition contains pieces from Sarah Hatton, Sarah Lart, Mel Bastier, Helen Campbell, Mandy Coates, Ruth Pybus, Michelle Cain, Susannah Johnston, Prue Thimbleby and Terry Dunne and and shows a diverse mix of styles and materials used.

The gallery is open Monday to Friday 9am – 4.30pm and Saturday 9am – 3pm, closed on Sunday. It’s well worth a visit!


The BA Summer Meeting on Saturday 23 June at the National Botanic Garden of Wales is fast approaching and here’s what exciting things we’ve got planned for the day

The event starts at 10am and finishes at 4.30, remember, BA members get in free by showing their membership card at the main gates. 

All day in the marquee

Displays of Coracles, Welsh traditional basketry, recycling and basketry, first and finest baskets, thatching, rope making and bee skeps and other crafts

Sales of basketry information, materials and tools from the Basketmakers Association and the Cane Workshop and of baskets from the South Wales Basketry Group

Have a go sessions

10.30- 12.30 

Child friendly activities with the South Wales Group

Recycled basket  with Michael Peacock

Coiling with Annie Hart

Squarework with Tom John

Splitwillow with Sue Johnston


Child friendly activities with the South Wales Group

Rushwork with Mandy Coates

Willow with Jenny Crisp

Cyntells with Les Llwellyn

Corndollies with Kerry Welsby


13.30 Michelle Cain will talk about her work and the creation of the wild boar

14.00 Helen Campbell will talk about traditional welsh basketry techniques

Welcome to the blog for the Big Basketry Gathering 2012 to be held in Carmarthenshire in June.

We have a very exciting programme of workshops, exhibitions, demonstrations planned and a chance to join in with the making of a large willow boar with Michelle Cain. The event kicks off on Monday 18 June and ends on Thursday 28 June, a full timetable is listed below.

The event takes in the BA Summer Meeting which is on Saturday 23 June at the National Botanic Garden of Wales from 10am – 4.30pm and is a perfect chance to meet up with basket makers from all over the country and will feature demonstrations or workshops from Jenny Crisp, Mandy Coates, Les Llewelyn, Helen Campbell and many more.

Timetable for gathering

  • 18 June – Hanging exhibition at The Gate in St Clears
  • 20 June – Workshop for refugees and asylum seekers from Swansea at the Botanic Garden
  • 20 June – 23 June – Camp at the Botanic Garden for Welsh makers – making large willow boar with Michelle Cain
  • 23 June BA Summer meeting 10 – 4.30 – lots of mini workshops and demonstrations – see plan below
  • 23 June – 7.30pm BBQ and bonfire at Annie Hart’s house – Delacorse, Laugharne. Parking and basic camping on field. Bring bottle and musical instruments
  • 24 June – 11 am private view of exhibition at St Clears – afternoon in Laugharne – Talacharn Trails and Tales at the Castle and Dylan Thomas’ boathouse

Book on a workshop

We also have day workshops to enjoy as part of the event.

  • Monday and Tuesday 25 and 26 June – Bark workshop with Terry Dunne at Botanic Garden £75 for two days, see below for details
  • Tuesday 26 June – Welsh Tea-things basket with Helen Campbell at St Clears £35 form 10am – 3pm
  • Wednesday and Thursday 27 and 28 June – Bark workshop with Terry Dunne at St Clears £75 for two days
  • Wednesday and Thursday 27 and 28 June – Coracle making with Pippa Scott and Rob Ritchie at Laugharne £120 for two people making one coracle over two days plus £60 materials

Booking can be made through prue@thimbleby.net please book early, spaces are limited.


The exhibition of work from basket makers in Wales at St Clears runs from Wednesday 20 June to Saturday 14 July. Some examples then transfer to Craft in the Bay which runs from 2 August to 30 September.


  • Basic camping  at Botanic Gardens Wed 20th – Sat 23rd – let Prue know if you plan to come
  • Basic camping  Sat/Sun on field at Delacorse, Laugharne (Annie’s) – please let her know
  • Camping at Ant’s Hill Campsite (01994 427355) approx £20 per tent per night
  • Travel Lodge at Cross hands or St Clears approx £30 per night
  • Local B&Bs
  • Browns Hotel – reopening June in Laugharne

Useful Contact details


With Terry Dunne from Wexford, Eire

The workshop includes an illustrated talk of works made from willow and birch bark recorded and made in Finland in 2010.

Hands on sessions to include; Bark harvesting, stripping, drying, storing, soaking and working with willow bark.

Students will get time to try and relate the bark methods learnt to their own work.