WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 00:00:01 on 12/02/2022 - Programme Name: Loggerheads - TX: 17/02/2022 - Episode: n/a (No. 1/6) - Picture Shows:  Loggerheads presenter Jim Smith - (C) Mighty Scotland - Photographer: ****

Woodworkers at Loggerheads in new series

Forests around Scotland and woodworking are about to get the TV treatment.

Loggerheads is a new BBC Scotland series which pits two teams of woodworking experts against each other in a timed competition to create something spectacular from their freshly felled timber in just 24 hours.

Visiting some of Scotland’s most magnificent woodlands the teams cut, craft, create and camp in the great outdoors. The woodchips fly as the experts battle against the clock, their opponents and mother nature.

Both items will remain in the woodlands but when the clock runs out and the sawdust settles only one team can claim victory – chosen by a local judge – and lift the coveted golden axe.

Presenting this series is comedian and farmer Jim Smith, who said: ‘I like a bit of woodworking myself – I am a farmer and I do have my own chainsaw – but nothing like what these guys can create.

‘The teams on this are terrific and I think people will love seeing their work and ‘being’ out of doors with them in these fantastic forest settings.

‘Obviously I’ve been around Scotland a fair bit but we went to some amazing locations and meeting the local judges was great; they all care so much about their local area and are so passionate about it.

‘And at the end of the day whatever team wins, the local area has two great projects which will benefit visitors and the local community.

‘Seeing it all from start to finish, from the trees being felled in the forest to being turned into brilliant creations there on site, has really inspired me.’

Loggerheads presenter Jim Smith (Photo: BBC Scotland)

The teams travel the length and breadth of Scotland, visiting a different woodland each episode, as they bid to impress a local judge.

Using wood felled as part of the woodlands’ management plans, the experts wrestle this freshly cut timber, which can be notoriously tricky to work with. As they work on their creations the teams face everything the Scottish climate can throw at them from scorching sun in the Borders and howling winds on the North Coast to torrential rain on the Inner Hebrides.

The two team captains are:

Linzi St Clair Thompson (33) – Originally from Edinburgh but now living just outside Perth, Linzi started off by obtaining a degree in Textile and Surface design where she began wood burning pyrography and upholstery. She has a passion for illustration, particularly nature-based subjects and it seemed natural to combine this with her woodworking by using pyrography. After her studies, she moved to France where she worked as a ski instructor and off piste guide, working out of season back in Edinburgh with furniture and also on set/costume design. Linzi continues to grow the business from her workshop in Cargill, where she builds contemporary furniture and wooden home accessories using native wood which is felled, milled and stored on her Perthshire farm.

Vicente Ridaura-Harvey (35) – Vicente is originally from Mexico but is now based in East Lothian. He does everything from fine joinery to cabinet and furniture making. He came to Scotland in 2012 to do a 9-month intensive course on furniture making, having first started in Vancouver in 2007, working as a framer.##Before moving onto Scotland, Vicente returned to Mexico, where he had a small company making wooden Pergolas, but also worked as a Set Dresser for TV advertising.

Each week they will each be joined by two team members from a roster of regulars.

In the first episode of Loggerheads – which is being shown on the BBC Scotland channel – team captains Linzi and Vicente each hope to lead their team to victory amongst the trees at Glenlude in the Scottish Borders. The teams are challenged to turn their felled spruce into something that will assist the many groups that are helping to rewild these woodlands, which includes a local rehabilitation group.

A boat inspired picnic table created in a Caithness woodland, which will be seen in a later episode (Photo: BBC Scotland)

Linzi’s team is creating a place for the working groups to relax, with resting spots decorated with woodland motifs, while Vicente’s team is making a woodland workshop complete with a wooden vice, shaver and tool hanging space.

Judging their efforts is local property manager Karen Purvis from the John Muir Trust.

She said: ‘It was fantastic to host the Loggerheads team at Glenlude. The John Muir Trust’s focus here is to bring back a mosaic of native habitats and welcome people from all walks of life to be a part of the story. The shelters created by the woodworkers will be appreciated and enjoyed by all those who come to Glenlude to volunteer, heal, study and reconnect in nature.’

Successive episodes will feature forests in Gillies Hill in Stirlingshire, Ringill on the Isle of Skye, Dunnet Community Woodlands in Caithness, Cormonachan Community Woodlands on the shores of Loch Goil in Argyll, and Scone in Perthshire. Over the course of the series the team’s creations will also include a boat inspired picnic table, a swing seat and a play fort.

Loggerheads, which has been produced by Mighty Productions Scotland, will start on the BBC Scotland channel on Thursday February 17 at 8.30pm.