A day out at the Shed of the year winner Songs from the shed & watching a shed session with Natalie McCool

Yesterday(6th July 2011) I had the pleasure of spending a few hours with Jon the owner of this year’s Shed of the year, it’s the first time I have visited a shed winner – even though I have been invited every year – but as it was just an hour on the train from Cardiff – I thought why not (of course my aim is to visit all sheddies at some time! – call it my shedlist instead of bucketlist)

Jon made me feel very welcome and a mug of tea was provided before I knew it and I was told about the worldwide reaction he has had about his shed winning the most sought after shed competition, just before I arrived he was on Irish and Spanish radio talking sheds and songs!

Me and Jon

As you know the shed itself is a former army billet building was mainly used for storage and the like and was going to be home to a Cheese and Cider club for him and his mates.

Before a good look round the shed Jon took me along to his local and we had a nice pint of Butcombe – and we had a chat about where the idea for Songs from the shed, came after a few beers (all the best ideas do) at the Pub The Royal Oak in Clevedon, while watching a folk night and he thought why not have local musicians play in his shed – and it has worked very well not only with big names such as Alabama 3 and Steve Harley playing the shed , Jon has also made sure that local and up and coming artists all get a chance.

Half of the shed has just had a nice coat of cuprinol to see it through the winter but the shed has recently had some problems with woodworm which Jon will be using his prize money to try and fix.

Internally the shed is a collection of old farmers/butchers nicknack’s with some music and maritime things chucked in, but it works as it’s not jammed packed to the rafters.

Whilst I was there singer/guitarist Natalie McCool popped in to have a go at a shed session (they had driven from Winchester!)

I am not normally a fan of this heartfelt singer songwriter stuff – but Natalie had an amazing voice and some great songs and the sound in the shed was great – I think Jon does a admirable job of capturing the atmosphere but he’s only filming it with a hand held compact camera, which I was surprised at – but it works well.

It will be great to see the session on the site very soon – Jon has a few exciting names lined up to play the shed and a few other great ideas but that’s hush hush.

So a warning to sheddies for next year – you may get a visit from me…as part of your “prize” if you win shed of the year (FYI I like tea/cider/real ale/bacon rolls as my rider) 😉

By Andrew Wilcox

I love sheds Founder & judge of Shed of the year - Wilco writes mainly about sheds. About the blog Enter your shed into #shedoftheyear


  1. All you two needed was a couple of pointed hats and a fishing rod and you could be a couple of COUPRINOL GNOMES….ENJOY JON….stay lucky…REG

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