Gill Dobson: Creative Willow

Gill Dobson is an environmental event provider specialising in creative willow workshops, based in the Clwydian Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in North East Wales. Her background over the past 12 years has been in woodland community engagement, especially planning and delivering environmental education events with schools, community groups and the public, for The Woodland Trust, Knowsley Borough Council and The Mersey Forest.

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Creative Willow

Below are some examples of willow based workshop activities that Gill can offer to clients: local authority ranger services, other NGO conservation organisations, schools and private individuals. Children’s activities all have an environmental education content and are ideally linked to an outdoor woodland setting where children can collect natural materials to incorporate in their work, and play related environmental games.

Craft Workshop Activities

  • Magic Wands (including Tree ID, Folklore, Flower Fairies and Spell Writing)
  • Fairy/Elf/Angel Wings
  • Leaf Crowns
  • Fairy Homes and Nest Building
  • Dream Catchers
  • Willow Flowers, Fishes, Butterflies and Dragonflies
  • Animal Masks, Pine Cone Creatures and Creatures on Sticks
  • Willow Valentine Hearts
  • Giant Bluebells (linked to Guided Woodland Wildflower Walks)
  • Flowers made from recycled plastic bottles
  • Hapa Zome (Japanese natural fabric printing; beating flowers and leaves with hammers!)
  • Haloween Lanterns, Pumpkin Lanterns and Witches Broomsticks
  • Land Art (making pictures from autumn leaves and found materials)
  • Tree Dressing (decorative ways of feeding the birds using natural materials)
  • Natural Christmas Decorations (including Wreaths, Stars, Hearts and Christmas Trees)

Elf and Fairy Parties

  • Craft workshop activities (including Magic Wands, Fairy Wings, Leaf Crowns above)
  • Outdoor environmental education games and Nature Detectives activities
  • Traditional party games, fairy cakes and goodie bags
  • Storytelling

Other Activities

  • Tree Planting
  • Bluebell Bulb Planting
  • Wildflower Meadow Seeding
  • Bird Feeders and Bird Boxes
  • Various outdoor educational games and activities

Adult Willow Workshops

  • Willow Baskets (Beginners, Hedgerow and Recycled Cardboard Baskets)
  • Christmas Crafts (including Wreaths, Stars, Hearts and Christmas trees)
  • Willow Garden Crafts (Hanging Baskets, Plant Supports and Trellises)
  • Willow Sculptures (Ball, Obelisk, Birds and Animals)
  • Living Willow Structures (Dens, Arbours, Seats)
Photos will be added here shortly.


Community Consultation

Questionnaire Design, Visitor Surveys and Reports for countryside sites. Helpful for clients to secure external funding. A craft activity event is recommended to encourage participation in visitor surveys.

School Ground Design

As a former Landscape Architect, Gill also has extensive experience in school ground design with the involvement of pupils. This includes master plans, design and implementation of nature gardens and outdoor classrooms, and preparing funding bids.

Plant Surveys

Good plant and bird identification skills, with experience of field surveys and NVC reports.

Health and Safety

Gill has Advanced CRB Clearance and Public Liability Insurance. Risk assessments are produced for all activities.


Event delivery is charged at £25 per hour, plus expenses for materials and mileage. Event planning and preparation is generally charged at £12.50 per hour. Workshops can be tailor-made to suit your needs and budget, with links to the curriculum. So please contact me to discuss your requirements.