Did we want to see how to make charcoal? And have a barbecue? Yes, obviously!


Thanks, Chris Goodman, for the invitation.

The steel kiln was purpose made with a fitted lid, and vents at the bottom. It was packed with birch and cooked for a few hours.



Also, a metal paint tin was filled with smaller bits, including willow twigs, to put in a separate fire.

Boy, was it smokey! Even after a shower, I still smelled of smoke. So did my anorak after it had been washed. I guess I should’ve stood somewhere else? Easy to say now.


The charcoal looked just like you’d expect. Of course it did. What else would it look like? The most amazing thing was the willow twigs…. they were like the artist’s charcoal you can buy in packets. I wondered if they’d shrivel up too much as they baked, but, no, they were just fine!


Yes, all good.

All good until we went for a walk with the dog and I managed to fall into a load of peaty slime, sit on my camera and destroy the lens. Fortunately it was a cheap one. I was trying to find a stick to throw for the dog and she didn’t even say thank you.


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