Keith and Cathy's Picking Weekend

Hello! Please note there will be no picking weekend this year (2020) - Keith and Cathy are busy building a new house and just don't have the time!

Here's some details on our picking weekend, which this year is on Friday 22nd to Sunday 24th June. We'll be getting there just after midday on Friday, and last year quite a few people stayed until Monday morning.  


As for previous years, we are the guests of Nick and Carol Baker at Lower Stock Farm. See map and directions below. The farm is in a rural location, but it is not remote - it is just south of Bristol, and close to Bath, Cheddar, Wookey Hole, Glastonbury and the Mendip Hills. There is good fishing nearby at Blagdon and Chew Valley Lakes. 

We hope this makes our weekend attractive to people who will have to travel a long way to get here. Nick and Carol are happy to let you camp or B&B during the week before, or the week after, so that you can combine playing some music with some sight-seeing. If you want to do this, give them a ring to arrange it.

This year there is no Glastonbury Festival, so getting to Nick's should be much easier. 

Music style

This is a picking weekend for people interested in the traditional rural music of the South East USA. The music is usually led by the fiddle and banjo, with backup from other instruments including mandolin, guitar, ukulele, double bass. There is also an opportunity to sing and dance! If this is your thing, you are very welcome to come along and join in. If not, probably best to do something else this weekend!

This is not a festival, and there are no organised performances - just the opportunity to listen to or join in with like-minded musicians.


The weekend is free, but we would really like everyone to donate to the charity that Nick and Carol support, which is Farmlink. We will make a collection during the weekend. As a guide, last year most people gave £10 or £20. 


A tradition is emerging whereby Nick and Carol produce and serve wonderful and massive breakfasts on Saturday and Sunday. There is a charge, and the profits from this are donated to Farmlink. Bear this in mind when you are shopping beforehand. This has been a great social way to start the day, and usually blends seamlessly into a picking session.

Dogs and children

Please don't bring your dog, as this is a working farm. Children, however, have had a great time running around in the woods, pond dipping, chatting with the farmer etc etc.

Bed and Breakfast

Carol Baker runs a B&B at the farm. Last year several people missed out on this because they contacted Carol when she was already fully booked. This year Carol would love to have her rooms full of picking weekend people, so if you are interested, contact Carol as soon as possible.


Of course you can also tent, or bring your camper van.

The tractor ride

Another traditional event is the tractor ride into Wrington, when Nick recounts some of the rural and ancient history of the area, while we serenade unsuspecting locals with tunes. This is open to everyone including non-musicians and children


Last year the weekend started with a storm and ended with a heatwave. On the Friday evening we gathered in one of Nick's barns, but by Sunday we were playing in the woods to avoid sunburn. In between these extremes we played in the camp field. There are facilities for all kinds of weather!

Contacts and links:

Lower Stock Farm, Baker's Lane,

Wrington, N Somerset BS40 5HT 

You can contact Keith Burrows and Cathy Benjamin on 01454 411052,  or by email: keithb1703 (at) 

Please let us know if you are planning to come to the weekend, or if you would like more details.

Lower Stock Bed and Breakfast website is here

Nick and Carol's charity, Farmlink has a website here

We are members of FOAOTMAD (Friends of American Old Time Music and Dance). The society's website is here

If you want to see this map in a Google Maps webpage, click the Google logo (bottom left of the map) or click the link 'View larger map' 

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