Denman Essex WI

Essex Federation 25th to 27th June 2021 Denman Trip

Below are details of our 2021 trip to Denman by coach. Full details of prices and coach travel options will be announced in the near future. If you have any questions in the meantime, please email

Courses Summary

Bumper Craft Takeaway with Natalie Green

Try your hand at a medley of different craft projects with a contemporary twist. You will make a number of small projects to give you lots of lovely ideas for your WI craft sessions, to decorate your home or to give away as special presents. There will be a range of projects to try, using beautiful fabrics, felts, buttons, threads, beads, papers and all sorts! The projects are quick and simple. They take around an hour or so to make, and are intended to give you lots of ideas to share with others.

There will be an extra charge direct to the tutor for materials

Summer Preserves with Vivien Lloyd

Celebrate the arrival summer by joining us to make preserves using recipes championed by the Women’s Institute. Suitable for beginners and experienced preservers, capture the flavours of summer for the colder months ahead. This course is practical with some tutor demonstrations. Learn how to make sweet and savoury jams, jelly, curd, cordial, chutney, vinegar and preserve fruit in alcohol.

For those who enjoy entering competitions, there will be hints and tips from the tutor who is an NFWI Preserves Judge. Jars and lids for the preserves made during the course will be provided. This course contains some pair work.

Wildlife Walks, Walking through Time with Christopher Everett & Pam Hopwood

Discover a wealth of wildlife and landscapes in Oxfordshire as we take a journey back in time. Walking from modern manicured landscapes of Blenheim, abandoned Victorian railway vistas adorned with summer flowers and surreal ferns, to eerily mysterious prehistoric megaliths, and on to a glimpse of life in Jurassic times. And we will gaze skyward for a telescopic view of the oldest of landscapes, our satellite, the Moon. Up to 5 miles/day.

Herbs & History, including visit to Oxford Botanic Gardens with Letta Jones

If you are interested in the changes in the use of herbs throughout the centuries to the present day, then this is the weekend for you. You will walk in the herb garden at Denman and visit the Oxford Botanic Gardens to enjoy the herb borders, with practical plant identification included.

You’ll explore the uses of herbs for medicine in Europe from the 1st century AD, considering some magical attributes and changes in their use, early European Botanical gardens, manuscripts, plus the influence of 16th and 17th century herbalists and their books. Plants used in herbal and pharmaceutical medicine, aromatherapy and homeopathy will also be considered.

Tai Chi for Health and Vitality with Alan Baker

The unhurried and effortless movements of Tai Chi are practiced with calm concentration making practice extremely pleasurable. In fact if the exercise is not comfortable and enjoyable you are probably doing something wrong. It hardly seems credible but research has proven the beneficial and therapeutic benefit of Tai Chi. Current research indicates that Tai Chi is a weight bearing and moderate intensity cardiovascular exercise. Practice of Tai Chi can improve balance, reduce falls and increase leg strength. It also lowers stress hormones, enhances respiratory and immune function and promotes emotional well-being.

Mosaics: A Fun Introduction with Lis Greensmith

If you have ever wondered about mosaics and didn’t know where to start, then this is the workshop for you! Aimed at complete beginners, and also those with some prior experience, this mosaic course offers the opportunity to create a beautiful and unique mosaic using the Direct Method, to display Iinside your home. You will be taught how to safely use tile nippers to shape tesserae and cut your mosaic design. There will be a large choice of wooden bases – a lovely little tray, or a mirror, or picture/plaque, or set of coasters, or a large seahorse, gecko, butterfly or dragonfly. and a vast selection of tiles and embellishments. If time allows (and your glue is dry) then grouting can take place on the final morning, but if not don’t worry, a grouting demonstration will be given and you can take grout home with you.

There will be a minimum charge of £18 towards the cost of the materials (maximum of £28 dependent upon your usage), payable

Denman College is the WIs own Residential Adult Education College near Oxford   and was named after the first National Federation Chairman, Lady Denman.  It is a graceful Georgian house, set in 17 acres of beautiful grounds.  Most of the money needed to buy, develop and maintain the College over the years has been raised by the WI.  The rich variety of courses last for 2, 3 or 4 days.

Most bedrooms are lovingly maintained by the various County and Island Federations, which gives a unique feel to each room.  The bedrooms are either single, single en-suite or  twin and three bedded rooms for friends who like to share.  The elegant public rooms give everyone the welcome chance to relax and make friends.

Subject to space, groups of 10 students or more may apply to make a block booking for customised courses.  A small group booking attracts a discounted price.

If you are interested in staying at the College for either bed and breakfast, private study or as a base to explore the area you will be most welcome.

To apply for any of the above, please telephone: 01865 391991

Click Here To Visit The Denman Website