As a club we are keen to get involved with local groups. The benefits are twofold as it helps to promote an awareness of woodturning and what can be achieved. It also serves to help and assist the group in their particular venture. So if you feel that Taywood Woodturning Club can assist you please contact us and we will give your question full consideration.

MAXwell Centre Project

Kate Treharne who works at The MAXwell Centre, St Salvador Halls, Carnegie St. Dundee asked us, via the website, if we could create “wooden paper potters” for a community project in Dundee. The MAXwell centre is a community centre offering financial and legal advice, workshops, craft and vocational sessions as well as local councillor surgeries. We are a vibrant and well-utilised service at the centre of a deprived community. We have established a training garden project aimed at giving people the skills and confidence they need to take on their own allotment plots. This has rejuvenated a derelict builder's yard to become a fertile garden area. Four of our training plots have been allocated to local primary schools and the pupils have begun to plant seeds in preparation to tend their own food-producing plots. The remaining seven plots have been allocated to community groups and individuals keen to start growing their own produce. Since we are funded by the Climate Challenge Fund, our focus is on local food production and recycling. The paper potters enable us to use newspaper to make pots for seedlings, minimising the use of mass-produced plastic pots and they are also fun to make, keeping the kids engaged.

The paper potters be used by local primary school children and staff at the MAXwell centre to make "paper seed pots" to bring on seedlings which in turn will be used for the Community Garden Project. The initial request was for 10 potters and Taywood Club members were asked if they would help out. I have a feeling that we will finish up with more than 10.

On Thursday 20th February four members of Taywood Woodturning Club visited the MAXwell Centre in Dundee to present the "paper potters" to Kate Treharne. Two of her colleagues and a group of children from Dens Road primary school were also present. Kate was delighted as were her colleagues and the children were excited and very eager to try out their new paper potters. They were also keenly interested in how they were made and the different types of wood that were used. 

The paper potters made by Taywood are a great demonstration of craftsmanship over commercialism and has ignited the boys' interest in wood-turning: they love them!

Thank you to everyone involved in creating this beautiful collection for us.

Event Pictures:

333 Squadron WW2

Taywood Woodturning Club were recently asked if we could help by making commemorative bowls to celebrate the visit of surviving members of 333 Squadron who were based at Woodhaven, Wormit near Newport on Tay in Fife. The Laburnum used for the project was from a tree planted to commemorate the efforts of the Squadron during WW2.

333 Squadron The squadron was formed as a flight of coastal command RAF in February 1942 and flew Catalina flying boats on clandestine, reconnaissance and anti-submarine missions from Woodhaven. Friendships made during hostilities were renewed in the 1970s and a strong continuing relationship between Woodhaven and 333 Squadron since then.

A Laburnum tree was planted to commemorate the visit of King Haakon VII to 333 Squadron Royal Norwegian Air in June1944.The tree fell down in July 2004 and the wood has been stored by David Winch of Wormit. Seven Norwegian Veteran who are survivors of WWII visited and were presented with a bowl made by club member Chairman, Dave Beatt. Knut Olsen was a pilot of Catalinas from Woodhaven, two were submariners based in Dundee, at least one was a mechanic on Mosquitos at Leuchars and another served at Montrose.

At Woodhaven the Catalina and Sunderland flying boats of the No. 333 Norwegian squadron were serviced at the pier during the Second World War; a memorial close in the shade of specially planted laburnum trees by the Wormit Boating Club marks the visit by King Haakon vii to the flying boats in July 1944. The specially built brick columns at the pier, still in evidence today, enabled mechanics to service the planes and gain access to the underside of the wings.

Two U-boats were heavily damaged in a single action by Leuchars-based 333 Squadron Mosquitos on 16th June 1944 and the Squadron's first U-boat kill came the following day when Lieutenant Karl Crafft in Catalina D/333 depth-charged and sank U-423. Another U-boat was heavily damaged by a Woodhaven Catalina a month later. The Catalinas also undertook highly dangerous flights carrying secret agents and saboteurs into occupied Norway. On other occasions, particularly at Christmas, they would fly up the Norwegian coast dropping much-needed food and medical supplies. RAF Woodhaven closed in 1945 but 333 Squadron remains one of the elite units of the Royal Norwegian Air Force.

The Mars Training Ship

For sixty years, the Mars Training Ship lay anchored on the River Tay just off Woodhaven and it became a famous local landmark, embedded in Dundee history. In that time, more that 6,500 homeless and destitute boys joined the ranks of the ship to learn new skills and to keep out of trouble.

Launched in 1848, the Mars was a handsome three-masted sailing ship with two decks and eighty guns. But by the time she was completed, the era of sail was giving way to new technology and her conversion was never entirely successful. After a brief spell on coastal defence duty, the Mars was earmarked for scrap. At that time in 19th century Dundee, poverty and disease were rife and, although transportation had stopped in 1857, many children had no option other than to steal to survive and a good number ended up in Dundee prison. This could not go on, however, and so the idea of a training ship for Dundee was born. Life on the Mars by all accounts was brutally harsh and several of the boys drowned trying to swim to shore to escape.

The anchors of the Mars were recovered when the ship was finally decommisioned and lie in front of the clubhouse as a memorial to the boys. There is also a war memorial to the boys of the Mars that died for their country in World War 1.