Lore of the Wild

Saturday 22nd May 2021 to
Friday 31st December 2021

Lore of the Wild

Lore of the Wild is a downloadable audio storywalk and map which will guide you on a transformative journey around Lesnes Abbey Wood in South East London.  FREE. 

Co-commissioned by Metal and London Borough of Bexley for Estuary 2021, Lore of the Wild will be available to download via smartphone from 22 May 2021. During the festival (22 May – 13 June 2021) it will also be able to be enjoyed via specially commissioned handset so you can leave your phone at home.  

How it will work: You come prepared; with a pair of headphones, a fully charged smartphone and clothes suited to the weather, with practical pockets. You arrive at Lesnes Lodge and pick up a beautifully illustrated map from the Chestnut Kiosk, maybe pop to the loo, and then you’re ready. You set out to begin a transformative journey into the woods, to discover the Lore of the Wild (and to rediscover your very own wildness).  X marks the spot: The beginning; a well for welcome, wishes and wonders and the point at which you slip on your headphones, twitch your tail and follow the link on the map.  You hear a voice gently inviting you to take a deep breath and then to listen; slowly the natural sounds begin to mingle with recorded sounds and the voice guides you to begin your journey.  

What you might experience: Lore of the Wild is a “storywalk” in which you will hear tall tales and true stories; songs and sounds from the human and non-human inhabitants of Lesnes; as you walk through this ancient woodland. The many experts including people, birds, squirrels, insects, streams and the wind itself will weave together a tapestry of tales which connects the river and the woods to the whole world and beyond.  As you journey the route you will be invited to connect with, observe and interact with the environment. Look out for the faces in the trees, make a decision at the crossroads, experience the oak tree dance, share wisdom with the Green Man and feel a part of the ancient past and the infinite future.  Is it for me? Lore of the Wild will be a two hour experience (approximately) that can be enjoyed solo or with friends (following current government guidelines). Please be warned, there are steep inclines, muddy steps, and some tricky terrain. Unfortunately this walking route is not accessible for wheelchair users, but you can download the stories to enjoy in another environment, or from home, by visiting the Lesnes Abbey Woods website.   

All participants will be encouraged to send a postcard to someone they know, to share their experience and pass some of the stories on. Guided Walks Creators Bernadette Russell and Sophie Austin will be leading free guided walks during Estuary 2021 festival (advance booking required, registration will open in May), which will culminate in a live experience deep in the heart of the woodland. The audio work will exist as a long-term feature of the woods after the festival has finished.
Creative Team
Lore of the Wild is created by Bernadette Russell and Sophie Austin 
Sound Design by Hannah Marshall 
Illustration and Graphic Design by Melanie Smith

Instagram: @lore_ofthe_wild 


Saturday 22nd May 2021 to
Friday 31st December 2021


Lesnes Abbey Lodge, Lesnes Abbey Woods, New Road, London



Contact Detail

[email protected] 01702470700

Previous Shelter in Place
PLOT: Water Laid

Estuary 2021 is made possible by

Principal Partners

Creative_Estuary_New_1   ace

Major Partners

ecc uok thurrock thames_gateway selep medway  thames estuary   ebbsfleet    mayor locatekent kentcc gravesham uoe bas_coun   south_coun Here for Culture

Commissioning Partners

book_fest community_fund heritage_fund creative_coast bexleysalford fpg lesnes Essex2020Logo The Old Waterworks Logo UCA1

Festival Partners

arts_human uni_south uni_oxford uni_glas send_pier pla opp_se henley c2c roh southeastern Thamesmead2 Peabody2 BowArts3

Festival Supporters

essex_diversity   raddison   uber SouthEssex1 UniversityCentre1