Hurdles, spars & coppice products.
The claylands around Verwood were good for coppice, woods of hazel which
were cut down every seven to fifteen years for wood which was used as fuel
or for hurdle-making.
Making hurdles from hazel is the local industry which still survives, but
there are far fewer hurdlers today - even in 1955 there were still 15 of
them. They also produced split hazel rods used to pin down thatch:
thousands of these were needed every year when corn and hay were stored in
ricks. Cripplestyle, just to the north of Verwood had so many hurdle-makers
that the local brass band was called the Spar and Hurdle Band in the 1930s.
See a brief explanation of how hurdles
Some of the old hurdle-makers were
photographed at work.
The Cripplestyle Congregational Band, known as
the 'Spar and Hurdle' band.