Please note: This course is now fully booked.

An introduction to the wonderful world of mushrooms, toadstools and all things mouldy. The course is designed to enable you to identify some of our more common and more distinctive fungi and will discuss some of the weird and wonderful ecology and history of this rich and varied group. No prior experience is necessary just an enthusiasm to get out and have a go.

This course is about gaining an introduction to fungi, to build confidence in starting to identify this often tricky group. By the end of the weekend we aim to be able to identify some of the more common species that you might come across in the British countryside and being able to identify fungi as belonging to particular ‘groups’, for example, is it a brittle gill or a bolete, a parachute or a parasol, a waxcap or a webcap?

We’ll be discussing some of their general ecology as well as some of the more unusual roles that fungi can play in ecosystems. Plus, a bit about the history and myth of common UK species.

Tutor: Chris Ford

Chris Ford has worked in environmental education for 15 years, working at in the London Region at Juniper Hall and Bushy Park and at the Blencathra Centre in the Lake District National Park. He is now working for the RSPB on the Suffolk Coast at RSPB Minsmere Nature Reserve and continuing to share his love for the natural world from wildflowers to wading birds and invertebrates to interesting fungus. When he isn’t working Chris is often out on his bike or out in the garden but always with an eye out for anything interesting that might be spotted nearby.

Example Timetable

Start and finish times

Residential guests are welcome to arrive, register and settle into rooms any time between 15.30 and 17.30 on Friday. Non-residents should aim to be here by 17.30. Afternoon tea will be served at 16.00. A short welcome talk will take place at 18.30. You will then be shown into dinner at 18.45. The course will begin with a classroom session after dinner and finish with afternoon tea at approximately 16.00 on Sunday.

What's Included

Before You Attend

What to bring

Please bring the following with you if you can:

  • Notebook and pencil
  • Digital camera (if you have one)
  • Bird guide (if you have one)
  • Binoculars
  • Small rucksack or bag and a lunchbox
  • Waterproofs (just in case!) - these can be borrowed from the Centre
  • Stout shoes or boots (wellies can be borrowed from the Centre)
  • Water bottle and/or thermos flask
  • Hat and Sunscreen
  • Casual clothing

Sorry this course has ended