Call for Buxton residents to create woodland windows to cheer up passers-by

It’s likely that none us imagined that almost a year on, we would still be in the grip of a once in a century global pandemic that’s changed all of our lives in ways we could never have foreseen.

The scale of the pandemic has meant we’ve been unable to enjoy the things we love in the ways we’re used to – and that’s where art and creativity has shone through in the last twelve months, and continues to do so. Amongst the heartache and challenges we’ve all faced, it’s been the smallest things that have kept us going. Creatives in Buxton, just like many other communities in the last year, have gone all out to keep us connected with art.

Those shared experiences we once took so for granted, whether that was an art exhibition, a live performance or group workshop, the equivalent in today’s world is something much smaller but arguably much more meaningful.

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Organisers of the towns’ much loved lantern parade Buxton Sparkles, installed a gorgeous display of glowing lanterns in the first floor window of the Pavilion Gardens in December. We’ve seen Spider Man, Iron Man and Frozen characters walk the streets of Buxton and wave at children at the school gates. Buxton Museum and Art Gallery ran a series of online craft sessions so we could make prehistoric creatures in the comfort of our dining table. Over the Christmas period, we saw advent windows light up our roads featuring impressive designs by home owners.

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Photo credit: Buxton Sparkles

Glowing Lanterns and Winter Woodland Windows 

And the mood hasn’t changed, in fact the creative community in the town is thriving more than ever before. Over two weekends, 14th & 15th and 20th & 21st February local artist group Stone and Water are encouraging Buxton residents to take part in creating Winter Woodland Windows in their homes.

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Artists and story tellers Gordon Maclellan and Sarah Males, had planned a weekend of lantern walks through Buxton’s woodlands. “It is clearly not a good plan to organise an event like that just now, so we thought we would invite anyone who feels so inspired to bring the woodland into their homes and share their trees with other people by making winter woodland windows!”, says Gordon.

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Photo credit: Stone and Water
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Photo credit: Stone and Water

“We have two activities people can join in with, making glowing lanterns for a window ledge or woodland window displays. People are already sending in photographs of what they’ve done so far which is brilliant!”.

How can you take part?

Over both weekends between 6pm and 8pm (and other days and times if you want!), residents are invited to display their creations in their windows. “Let your light shine out so anyone out for a socially distanced evening stroll might get a touch of Winter Woodland wonder. If people take photos, we’ll post a gallery online!”

To get people started, Stone & Water have 100 sets of kits to help make both bottle lanterns and woodland windows and these are available free to people in Buxton. If you would like a set please get in touch with them via email [email protected] Facebook @stoneandwater or Twitter @stoneandwater3

How to make a Woodland Window?

You will need:

  • *A sheet of black card or paper (our practice ones are on A3 sized card)
  • *Piece of chalk
  • Sharp scissors
  • A craft knife and cutting mat (scissors might do as an alternative)
  • *PVA glue, brush
  • small pot (to mix glue and water in)
  • *Coloured tissue or cellophane
  • Sheet of plastic

You’ll find full instructions on how to make the ‘woodland windows’ on their website at

*The free kits include these items. They include a sheet of A2 card. “We have even bigger sheets of black paper if anyone wants to be really adventurous and make a whole forest! – let us know”, says Sarah.

Gordon and Sarah are keen to see what you do and would love to see any photographs of what you make and what inspired your design! “You don’t need to worry about creating a work of art, just do what ever you takes your fancy, this is about taking part in an activity and losing yourself for a little while – and you’ll also bring some cheer to passersby during this tough time for everyone.”

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