Both Ashley and I have been passionate about the conservation of our natural world since as long as we can remember. We met in South Africa 3 years ago as volunteers participating in wildlife and conservation research based in the famous Greater Kruger area. Now living together in the heart of the Suffolk countryside, we have combined our knowledge, hard work and combined passions to create and share a unique and rewarding experience to anyone wanting to visit rural England and discover the unique wonders of the Suffolk landscape we both cherish and find so much value in protecting and promoting.
Tom: Nature Guide
Born and raised in Northern Ontario, Canada, I have always grown up surrounded by wilderness. The outdoors has been a passion of mine ever since I was a small child, and I have since completed formal education in Wildlife and Forestry conservation, worked at a wildlife rescue and rehabilitation centre and lived briefly in South Africa as an ecology research intern. Whilst in Africa, I assisted in guiding international guests on game drives and on walking tours around our lodge; educating guests on the ecology and wildlife of the area, conducting anti-poaching demonstrations and presenting formal research findings. I am also fully qualified Registered Nurse and first-aid certified.
My partner, Ashley, is South African but has grown up most of her life here in England, and has fallen in love with this land. Since moving to Suffolk, she has devoted herself to the study of traditional pagan practices and more recently, herbalism, whilst pursuing the path of becoming an independent artist and pagan craftsperson under the guise of her burgeoning business, Foxglove & Fae. Ever since she was young, Ashley has believed in the magic and interconnectedness of the natural world, the importance of protecting the earth and learning to live sustainably and responsibly with all the creatures that inhabit it. She is now well learned in the native traditions and forgotten belief systems of historic England that encompass the history and folklore passed down by our ancestors, through endless hours of self study and personal practice.
Ashley: Folklore Guide
During our frequent walks along the hedgerows, country lanes, forests, and wheat, barley and rye fields that create the countryside surrounding our home, we witness the progression of the cycle of seasons belonging to this rural landscape and awaken to new ways of interacting with this land through becoming acquainted with the folk traditions of the area. This has evoked in us an enriched perspective and appreciation for the land we live on. Our shared interests in foraging, herbalism and folk practices, combined with our common background in conservation of nature and wildlife, have each led to the eventual formation of Foraging and Folklore.
Nature, to our ancestors, used to be a respected ally, protector and medicine keeper. Every quiet hedgerow, quaint country lane, wooded path and unassuming wildflower meadow is lined with ancient medicine and steeped in forgotten magic and untold lost stories. For every medicinal use of the common plants we pass by every day, there is an array of folk magic tales and traditions abound.
We hope that through these tours we are able to instill the same passion, perspective and forgotten wisdom in others that we have found, and perhaps open your eyes to seeing the world the same way our common ancestors did. We invite you to join us on Forage & Folklore: Guided Nature Walks to experience the magic for yourselves!