The Association was founded on the 9th.of May 1951, at a meeting held in the shadow of Cheviot, just on the border of England and Scotland. Its main objective is to provide an organisation to encourage the making of Shepherd's Crooks and Walking Sticks as a personal craft and to give help and advice to its members. Members are now drawn from all walks of life, not just the rural community, who have taken up the craft as a hobby. The skills required are passed on both at regular evening classes and on a one to one basis. There is also a brief description on the process at www.wlaidler.co.uk The timber used for the shank is mainly Hazel, but a number of other woods such as Holly,Ash, Blackthorn and Cherry are used. The horns used to make the handles are mainly from rams, but buffalo, goat and cow horns are also utilised. However due to the increasing scarcity of horn, decorative wood such as Burr Elm, Ripple Sycamore and more exotic timbers are being adopted.
Sticks made by some of our members have been presented to various members of the Royal Family and other dignitaries. However the sticks are primarily made to be entered in competitions held at Agricultural Shows throughout the region, and increasingly across the entire UK In addition the Association holds an annual competition at which there are now 21 classes and in the region of 250 individual sticks entered, there is invariably a similar number of sticks being displayed by some of the more experienced members.
If you are interested in any aspect of the craft we shall be happy to help you, if you wish to become a member the subscription is £10 for Life Membership, this entitles you to a lapel badge, car sticker and an Annual Newsletter, for further information please contact the secretary.
BORDER STICK DRESSERS ASSOCIATION
The Earl of Dalkeith, Viscount Ridley, Lord Joicey,