We moved on to our land in 2009, but Bulworthy Project was part of our lives for long before that. At first it was just an idea about buying a piece of land either in the UK or in Europe so that we could park our campervan and live a free and easy life. Back then it was just an embryo of an idea and didn’t have a name. As the idea developed, we started to refer to it as The Project. We still have a folder somewhere with “The Project” written on it. We liked and still like the fluidity that the word “project” brings to it. Our original ideas for how to make a living on the land were many and varied. We were aware that a lot depended on the what sort of land we ended up with and that we would try out ideas, of which some would work well and some wouldn’t. We wanted the flexibility to develop the project in this way. The word “project” implies that it is always a work in progress and we hope that it always will be.
Many years after The Project was originally conceived, after we had bought Hensons Wood and and owned it for a couple of years, we decided to move to Devon, first to a cottage and then (once we had sorted out a bit of infrastructure and a caravan), into the woods. For this to work, The Project needed to be outward facing. It’s all very well calling it “The Project” between ourselves, but we needed a name that would identify us. A name referring to our geographical location seemed like an obvious choice. We wanted to be free to change every other aspect of the business. If we had called ourselves “Devon Charcoal Project” we would have had to find a different name for any aspects of our business that didn’t involve charcoal. Hensons Wood is located in the parish of Rackenford, on the Knap of a hill known as Bulworthy Knap. We looked at options and really liked the word Bulworthy. We liked the sound and we liked the way it feels in your mouth when you say it. It looks good written down and although sometimes people put an extra “l” in it, generally people can spell it OK.
By putting those two words together we created and entity with a character of it’s own. We talk about it in third person and people use the third person when talking about it, to us. It sometimes has the ability to run away with itself and we have to reign it in. We didn’t have a clue what it would come to mean to people today or what it would be and we wouldn’t try guessing what it’ll become or mean to people in the future.