Celtica as a Living Museum
As part working farm and part living museum, Celtica will engage, educate, and enthrall those who visit by providing an immersive experience of life in an Iron Age Celtic Settlement.
Not only will visitors learn about the agricultural, animal husbandry, and land management practices employed by our early ancestors, but they will have opportunity to learn these incredibly valuable skills for themselves.
Visitors will also learn about the history, languages, and customs of the Celts though interpretive exhibits where actor/historians in period dress directly engage with their audience.
For the sake of simplicity, we have divided the skills and knowledge which can be learned at Celtica into two parts: Agricultural & Land Management and Celtic Culture and Artisanal Crafts. The list that follows is by no means exhaustive, as additional areas of focus are likely to be added when they become available.
Agricultural, Land Management and Conservancy Skills
The Celtica project will take some time to attain full operational capability following inception and not all of the features described will be immediately available but will be added progressively over time.
At Celtica, we passionately believe that all living things, especially those who provide for our sustenance, are deserving of our gratitude and respect.
In the modern era, where mass-production and factory farming is the norm, we humans have become increasingly isolated from nature and, as a result, are now largely unaware of our dependence on it for our survival. To borrow the words of Joni Mitchell, “you don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone”.
Whether it be the bees that pollinate our crops and provide us delicious honey, the sheep that provide the wool for our clothes, the oxen that help plough the fields, or the laying hens that provide for our sustenance, at Celtica we consider them all to be essential to our very existence.
Our courses on animal husbandry will focus not just on the care of livestock for health and general well-being, but will also incorporate practices which contribute to their emotional well-being, thus ensuring they live happy and productive lives.
Apiculture & Apiary Management (Bee Keeping)
Vital to our agricultural eco-systems worldwide, but under threat from excessive use of toxic pesticides, it has often been suggested that if the bees become extinct, so will mankind.
Not only will Celtica offer courses in how to manage and care for these incredible pollinators, but it will also produce small batches of organic honey and beeswax.
There will also be a “living museum” exhibit to inform visitors of the importance of bees and to educate them on the history of bee keeping, which has bee practiced for thousands of years.
Horticulture and Agronomy
Our early Celtic ancestors were far more savvy than most people realize. They understood how to work in harmony with the land to produce the very best crops along with an abundance of natural materials for use in building, and the manufacture of clothing, tools and utensils – all without ruining the environment.
At Celtica we will teach such skills as:
- Complementary & Seasonal Planting and Crop Rotation Techniques
- Soil Improvement through Zero Waste Recycling
- Soil Conservancy and Erosion Management
- Coppicing and Woodland Management
- Natural Fencing and Hedgerow Management
- Water Resource Management – Purification, Drainage and Irrigation
Artisanal Skills and Culture Preservation
Many of the skills practiced by our early Celtic ancestors were an integral part of their culture. However, with the onset of industrialization, factory farming , and our increasing isolation from nature, many of these are on the verge of being lost or all time.
At Celtica, not only will we provide living museum exhibits to inform and educate, but w will offer visitors the opportunity to learn these valuable skills for themselves.
Included in our educational program will be:
- Hedgerow Pleaching
- Natural Building Techniques – Wattle & Daub, Thatching, etc.
- Natural Textile Production
Linen – Flax Cultivation & Harvesting, Threshing, Retting, Scutching, and Spinning
Wool – Sheep Shearing, Carding, & Spinning
- Fabric Weaving
- Basic Pottery & Kiln-craft – The production of containers and utensils from natural materials
- Wickerwork & Crafting – The production of containers, baskets, and other objects from natural materials.
- Coracle Making – Small, round, lightweight boats used for fishing on rivers
- Basic Ironwork & Forge-craft – Production of agricultural tools & equipment – horseshoes, plowshares, etc.
- Natural Food Preservation Techniques – Cellaring, Salting, Drying, Pickling, etc.
We will also focus upon the history, culture, and language of the Celts:
- Celtica – from its humble origins, to the mainstay of European civilization and subsequent decline
- The ancient Brythonic and Goidelic Celtic languages – the P and Q Celts
- The seven surviving Celtic Nations: Galicia, Brittany, Cornwall, Wales, Ireland, Scotland, and The Isle of Man
- The modern Celtic Languages
- Astronomy and Astral Navigation – the Celts were expert navigators
- Celtic Customs, Folklore, and Mythology.