Patrick Harding; freelance broadcaster, author and adult teacher offers a number of illustrated talks suitable for a wide range of societies (see link to Illustrated Talks) and tutors on weekend and week-long residential courses aimed at interested adults (see link to Residential Courses). He has written 8 books and offers a by return service for signed copies (see link to Patrick's Books). His many media appearances include 'The Flying Gardener', 'Castle in the Country' (three series), 'Richard and Judy', 'BBC Breakfast', 'The Natural History of Christmas', 'Britain's Best Wildlife: Nature's Top 40', Radio 4 'Up Country' and Radio 2 Chris Evans.
Patrick is best known for his interest in mushrooms and toadstools. As a mycologist he is frequently described as a fungi (fun guy) despite the fact that fungi are plural! His four books on the subject include two on edible species and his residential courses, which take place in many locations throughout Britain during September and October, concentrate on the identification of common and edible species; with practical sessions on how to cook them. He is also an expert on fungal folklore and the links between fungi and music, literature, medicine and Christmas.
As a botanist he runs courses and gives talks on the identification of Britain's wild flowers and also about our native trees. He is especially interested in the scientific basis behind the medicinal (and other) uses of plants, a topic covered in his book 'Patrick's Florilegium'. Patrick is keen to bring together science and the arts; on many courses he includes sessions on poetry and prose and one of his talks consists of garden poetry and prose readings set to beautiful slides.
In November and December, Patrick gives courses and talks all about Christmas; his best-selling book on the subject is now in its fourth edition. People have been known to buy it in the summer to give them time to read it before giving it away as a Christmas present! Patrick can be contacted via the contact page.