Woodlore — School of Wilderness Bushcraft  


Woodlore Bush Chef with Ray Mears

Providing for the Camp

The ability to prepare tasty, nourishing and satisfying food is an incredibly important part of living outdoors. On the trail, food provides us with energy, comfort and something to look forward to at the end of a hard day but, by its very nature, it needs to be simple. Once we are living in a fixed camp however, things become very different indeed and we are presented with a wealth of opportunity. Here we can indulge in more complex cookery and provide a repast both sumptuous and delicious as a reward for our endeavours. Join Ray on a culinary expedition and bask in the welcoming scent of freshly baked bread as you acquire the skills that will lead you to the forest feast.

Further Information

Led by Ray, you will be working entirely outdoors, your team will cook delicious dishes including delicious fresh bread, mouth watering main courses and indulgent deserts. The morale boosting capabilities of hearty meals can never be underestimated and the ability to produce them with confidence and flourish is one of the most rewarding and truly pleasurable experiences that you can have. You will have friends and family thanking you for years to come for investing your time and passion into what most people see as an impossible task: cooking well outdoors.

Rotating through the various dedicated kitchens you will cook two, three course meals each day, experimenting with a variety of ovens and techniques particularly suited to the field. You will be amazed at what it is possible to produce and spend time sharing the well earned meals with your fellow students. Come prepared to work, eat and enjoy the company of the camp. We take no responsibility for increases in belt size resulting from participation in this course.

Amongst many other skills you will learn:

  • Hygiene
  • Managing fire & selecting wood for cooking
  • Making a selection of breads
  • Roasting & baking outside
  • Cooking without pots and pans
  • Supplementing your ingredients with wild food

At the end of the course, you will be challenged to design, prepare and cook a celebratory feast to share with the rest of the group. A truly indulgent end to a course packed with culinary treats.

This course starts at 17:30 on Friday and will finish at 16:00 on Monday.


All meals for this course will be provided. You will not live from the land during this course although wild food will be included according to availability. The preparation and cooking of meat is an integral part of this course and is something that you should be aware of if you have any specific dietary requirements.

We provide a kettle, tea, coffee, squash and biscuits in a brew box at the main camp fire of the course, under a large parachute. We also have fresh drinking water and a fruit bowl available.

Course Site

The Woodlore Bush Chef course will take place at an expedition style camp in East Sussex, close to Uckfield. The camp is situated in beautiful private woodland with no public access with lots of wildlife including deer, owls, badgers, fox and butterflies. We do not have shower/toilet blocks at our sites, therefore all aspects of the course will have a fantastic wilderness feel, using a screened camp shower and a screened latrine in the woods.

We have a car park at the course site where you your car will be kept during the course (if you bring one).

Other Details

Joining instructions will be sent to participants of the course 9 weeks before it is due to start, giving details of where to meet, at what time, and what to bring with you.

Dates, Costs and Bookings

  This particular course has already taken place and there are no other dates currently available. Please sign up to our mailing list for future course updates.

Course Reviews

Woodlore Bush Chef with Ray Mears is rated 5/5 based on 4 customer reviews.

All of our reviews are from people who have attended our courses.

Overall Rating:


  1 of 4

  I just wanted to say thank you again to all the team for the most wonderful long weekend Bush Chef course. Never have I consistently eaten so much, yet so well! The course was incredible, and it has totally changed my mindset on what is possible outdoors with just a little forethought. I very much liked the way the level was raised as we progressed; every day was stretching. Anyway, please if you could pass my heartiest thanks on to Wayne, James, Steve and of course Ray. It was wonderful.  


Rated: 5/5

  2 of 4

  As I write this, England is five days into the new "rule of six" under which a maximum of six people can meet, and I realise how amazingly fortunate I have been to attend this course. It absolutely proves that you must seize opportunities whenever they are presented. This was an excellent course. My experience in outdoor cooking was very basic, being focused around oats, rice and pasta, but even on the first night, I was astounded and delighted by the food which we cooked and ate with considerable gusto. Like all Woodlore courses, you're kept busy, and you're given the skills and encouragement to produce results which you would normally consider impossible. Ray, Dave, Steve and Wayne are all excellent instructors, and continue to uphold Woodlore as the gold standard in outdoor training. Ray in particular teaches at an entertaining pace and with a great deal of humour, and it's a genuine privilege to be taught by him. All the instructors commanded the students' respect, and, certainly in my case, the course exceeded my expectations (as did my culinary efforts). I was also blessed with two absolutely excellent teammates, Oliver and David, who I would be happy to join on any course or expedition (assuming that they would have me along!) Because I started knowing very little about this subject, I felt genuinely amazed by the speed with which I acquired knowledge, and I have a new found enthusiasm for outdoor cooking. I wholeheartedly recommend this course to anyone looking to improve their outdoor cooking skills and would like to thank all at Woodlore for an excellent course and a very memorable experience.  


Rated: 5/5

  3 of 4

  I just wanted to say thank you for the past 4 days on the Bush Chef course. It was thoroughly enjoyable, and the relaxed teaching style from everyone involved made it a real pleasure. I will take away many new skills and recipes, as well as some improved confidence to try them out. My daughter is already excited to try out many of the recipes on a trip out. You handled the COVID-19 situation with a perfect balance of sensible precaution without being too heavy handed such that it would spoil the experience - not easy with such a diverse group of participants. Overall this was an excellent course. Make sure you are prepared to eat, however, there is a lot of food!  


Rated: 5/5

  4 of 4

  We came away with the confidence to prepare and cook a huge variety of delicious food over the open fire. Thank you again to Ray Dave Wayne and Steve for a fantastic course! Will definitely be back.  


Rated: 5/5

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