Things Still Going on While Sheds are Closed

The lockdown has created for many space to do some things that regular busyness would not have allowed. What have you done? I’m sure Shedder Malcolm in Staithes Shed will respond!   **He has and added to the bottom:-)

One strange thing was that lockdown allowed the time for Graham and Bob to transform a garage with a lot of stuff in it into a Garage Shed still with a lot of stuff in it! We actually restored an old lathe too and Shedder Keith used his wiles to sort out some damage Graham had (ahem) done. It is a cosy nook with radiant heaters for the winter but with garage doors open it is a real treat of a retreat.

Graham extended his home wi-fi and now he has a woman in the Garage Shed (shhhh!). No, it’s alright. It is only Alexa who if I ask whether my wife loves me replies that she (Alexa) is sure that I’m lovely. Donald Trump and Graham like to know these things.


Next up is something this weekend that was taken from store and got to to work by my Scouting son and his Scouting wife and two Scouting grandsons – did I mention Scouting.

Two years ago the Whitby Shed invested in a small laser wood burner. Take a picture of some design, crank the handle and out after a long period of time (best measured in hours or parts thereof) comes a laser burnt reproduction on wood, card or leather. BrianH and Graham had got it to work with sample designs but we could not see a way to get our pattern design in.

Kevin sent this photo. It is a version of the Scout logo he used to burn the pattern sized at about 1″ square. I’d like to think Kevin was proud of his major achievement but I think he was thinking what a duffer father he had. I kept BrianH out of it ‘cos he might think the same of Brian. The kids were allowed to give us a hug which they found quite emotional (we did too) but it was then that first hand we saw the reality of what kids are missing.

Stages of laser burning.

Picture dragged onto screen

Laser carriage with wood piece

Spot the birdie












I crossed paths with two  girls who had been attending Sleights Youth Shed.

When is it starting again? Good question. There are many practical problems still with respect to distancing and active kids. Graham is pondering Zoom Youth Shed on a Friday night with music, live guests and YouTube Blue Peter style making.  With the kids doing stuff themselves. Parents in the background. Anybody interested or know of anyone who might be please contact Graham. 07763 656627. 

Shedder Bob makes the change from walking sticks to chair sticks

Bob makes the stick back of a teddy bear chair. (recycling walking sticks?)

Eddie called in speculatively looking for some life. We gave him life behind bars!

We tried to get a petrol strimmer going. The spark plug was removed. Eddie’s way of drying the plug tip was to set light to it. Bye Eddie.

More photos of the laser burner results


Very impressive burn of a dog photograph.  Any colour you like if it’s black.Graham’s son said to his grandson that they would have to buy Grandpa some replacement packets of laser light. The lad just rolled his eyes!

BrianH. We will get our toy back. We can now burn a logo for our Sheds

Unlocking the Sheds: Live Stream!

Hi Shed Leader!

We thought it would be helpful to host some chatter sessions for Sheds across the UK to hear how some Sheds are turning theory into practice.

On Thursday 30 July at 2PM, you will be able to submit your questions live to our panel of guest speakers via our social media channels.

Visit our channels this Thursday at 2PM here:  Youtube Channel / Facebook Group / Facebook Page 

PS. You will need to be logged in to send comments otherwise you can email after the broadcast.
The sessions will be recorded and will be available immediately on each of the platforms listed above after the stream if you wish to re-watch
As part of the UKMSA exercise to check up on Sheds Graham tried some hard to get Sheds a third time

There were 4 Sheds on the UKMSA list given to Graham. All labelled CREE in capitals and none with current details correct. So, a final shot was an email at the weekend to a suggested new contact.

Hi Graham

I will follow up on the information you asked for this morning but in the meantime here is a few names of the more active Groups:

  • Blackhall Community Association
  • Just for Women
  • Dene Valley Community Partnership
  • Greenfield Arts – Newton Aycliffe
  • Jack Drum Arts
  • Shotton Partnership

To name but a few……………………………

Take care


Susan Tron MBE, Community Development Officer

Durham Community Action

Susan was extremely helpful – they are like our Coast and Vale Community Action.  She explained that CREE was not an acronym as Graham though but the local word for Shed!! Learning the language.

THE BIG SURPRISE THEN CAME. THERE WERE MORE THAN 30 crees in Durham. UKMSA only knew of four. It was like Time Team digging things up that are buried. Susan is to try to get some info that we can put on this website and then each cree to be contacted to provide their details should they so wish.

What a find. What can be achieved by reaching out for information! Susan has an MBE. I said I’d recommend her for one if she did not already have one. She is a real driving force with heart further North. CaVCA have heart too, of course!

Some of the Sheds – err Crees – are for young people.  

Elaine has provided the results of BayThorpe Shedders getting outside exercise

Had a look at Bay Shed today, a great job going on with the rear wood store/ outside work space.

Olly has put little canopies over the windows so the rain runs off ,and not down the building. Next week it’s going to get a whitewash and a lot of weeding needs doing. They’re clearing all the rubbish from when the shed at the side was taken down. 

Well done BayThorpe. We appreciate the support of the “Scouts”. We hope we might earn a few badges! Dib-Dib-Dib, Dob-Dob-Dob. Not sure how socially distanced Olly is on the ladder but he seems to be 3 feet off the ground!

Malcolm’s on about Kumico. All old hat to us but humour him please!

Dear All,

Came across this by chance. Never heard of Kumico. These could be made from pallet wood cut to size.

Went to Hawes yesterday. Jam packed, misty and drizzling. Wonderful!! 


Whitby Shed gets dug in weeding

Betty, Tony and Rob (not in picture) worked to clear weeds in front of Eskmouth Scout Hall. 




An invitation to write

Friday at Staithes was a surprisingly active closed Shed!

Brian and Graham were there to meet a man who was pondering about coming to the Shed when it eventually opens.  He was accompanied by Steven Angus one of the 3 Link Workers that link the surgeries and patients to activities provided to interest/entertain/welcome/distract or whatever including our Sheds. Although Link Worker Charlotte was appointed to start in December 2019, beginning with induction, training and simply getting to grips with 5 surgeries that are an Alliance but nevertheless 5 separate business enterprises. 

So it was pleasing to have Steven and his charge come into the Shed. Steven saw a thicknesser (a kind of plane really) and had used one in his youth! So we commissioned the new planer-thicknesser. All fingers were accounted for at the end. Such machines are not for the novice or the careless!

Phil (second photo in front of the gate) came to say hello also. He had called to learn how we were all doing. What better than to pop in socially distanced?!

Friday was the Together in Esk Valley event, this time not in the flesh but on Zoom. A sild 5 hours of seeing things Esk Valley and particularly Botton orchestrated by Debbie John. More than 70 participants one time or another with a gallery of faces. It was excellent and the discussion very worthwhile.



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