Carving out history

PUBLISHED: 10:04 22 February 2008 | UPDATED: 08:22 02 June 2010

David Wenn with one of his bowls.

David Wenn with one of his bowls.

IT was a chance conversation while mending a go-kart that led to a carver being passed some wood from the Norfolk birthplace of Lord Nelson. And now David Wenn has spent years carving the wood into unique bowls, which he plans to present to royalty and or

IT was a chance conversation while mending a go-kart that led to a carver being passed some wood from the Norfolk birthplace of Lord Nelson.

And now David Wenn has spent years carving the wood into unique bowls, which he plans to present to royalty and organisations with links to Norfolk's most famous son.

Mr Wenn, 73, of Friday Bridge, was given the wood by a friend who lived near Burnham Thorpe, birthplace of Horatio Nelson.

A yew from the now-demolished Parsonage had blown over in 1980 and the tree had to be removed.

The tree was removed and cut it into pieces for firewood.

Years later while talking to Mr Wenn, a former engineer who was fixing his daughter's go-kart, he realised the wood was of historic significance.

In 2002, he transported the remaining wood and Mr Wenn decided to carve it into unique bowls.

The bowls are now almost complete and ready to be presented as gifts to people and groups he feels will cherish them for their historic importance.

Mr Wenn said he has had the wood checked by experts, who have dated the yew tree to be some 280 to 300 years old, and it would have been in the grounds at the rectory when Nelson was born in 1758.

He added: "These are not for sale and I do not want to be glorified, but if they are passed on to museums then they will still be there in 50 or 100 years' time.

"Otherwise the wood would have been burned and there would be nothing left. I just wanted to keep a bit of history alive."

He plans to give the bowls to the Duke of Edinburgh, the Norfolk Nelson Museum, HMS Victory, Bernard Matthews and the Rev Jonathan Charles, from Burnham Thorpe.

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