This year marks the 50th anniversary of the founding of the organisation that started out as Outward Bound Sea School Aberdyfi Mountain Rescue Team - now known as Aberdyfi Search & Rescue Team.
To raise funds for this charity-funded volunteer operated organisation, the team is running a prize-draw to win a piece of furniture called Idris’ Chair.
Standing just shy of 1m tall, the chair was made from hardened plywood by team volunteer Matt Young. Originally from Yorkshire Matt went to Aberystwyth University in 1995 for a degree in Environmental Earth Studies, a path leading to a long career in conservation and forestry related activity. He learnt the craft of building log-houses in Finland and brought those skills back to Wales. Finding himself the proud owner of a CNC routing machine, a computer controlled wood cutting device, he recently started to explore the artistic possibilities of the materials he was so familiar with, and the rest is history. The chair took three days to create. When asked about the creative process, Matt, true to his straight talking, no nonsense Yorkshire heritage, aid “sanding the internal angles was a pig”.
However, when asked what it was about wood that made it his life’s work he was much more effusive. “Each plank is different, with its own visual character, and that’s before you start thinking about different species with their own individual smell, texture and properties. It is the complete sensory experience.”
Intrinsically linked this passion for forestry is a love of the outdoors and wild places. As an experienced mountaineer, Matt can be found in the mountains whatever the weather, and has been a member of the Team for around 3 years.
It’s a neat circle: from mountain rescue to mountain-chairs to chairs to wood to trees to mountains and back to mountain rescue again.
Tickets for the 3 September draw can be bought at www.aberdyfi-sart.org.uk/idris-chair.html