Dorset, England
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About Ben

My name is Ben Short. I am a charcoal burner and woodsman, working in the Dorset countryside. This was not always the case. Eight years ago I was an advertising writer plying my trade in London. But the work left me unsatisfied and I no longer wanted to continue in that business.

With that chapter closing, my only wish was to get back to the country. This desire was accompanied by a lurking sense of inadequacy – that while I’d made good in my chosen career, back in the real world, where practical ability mattered, I was useless.


Unlike other firewood merchants I do not buy my wood in: all of it is garnered from local jobs I’ve done. Some material may come from thinning programmes, other material from trees felled or pollarded during hedge work.

I only deal in seasoned, hardwood logs. This wood I store in cords at my yard, until the time comes when the blanks are split and barn-stored for several months to complete the drying process. This winter (2018-19) I will have three year old beech available, as well as ash, oak and some alder. I deliver free of charge (within 10 miles of Powerstock) using a hi-capacity pick up. It has a load bed of 1.6 cubic metres. This equates to approx 450 logs when full.


The following extracts are samples of my writing.

They are taken from several sources – published editorial, notebook jottings and from a manuscript for a book I’m writing.

I’ve previously contributed to The Countryman and have also been published online by nature writing specialist, Little Toller Books.

I am available for editorial commissions – when not dodging smoke.