‘Stick Man’ of Helmsley takes a starring role with TV’s John Craven and Countryfile

Keith and Jacky Pickering from The Stick Man with TV presenter John Craven.
Keith and Jacky Pickering from The Stick Man with TV presenter John Craven.

Eagle-eyed celebrity-spotters in Helmsley were delighted to spot John Craven in town last week, filming an up-coming episode of Countryfile, which will see him creating a very special stick.

The Countryfile team spent six hours in the town with husband and wife team Keith and Jacky Pickering from The Stick Man.

After spending a couple of hours finding suitable sticks in Duncombe Park, they returned to The Stick Man’s workshop at Helmsley Walled Garden’s Craft Units to set to work.

John was shown the ropes by renowned stick maker Keith, creating a stunning Golden Eagle stick, which will be revealed in the show aired on January 27.

Keith Pickering said: “John is a lovely guy, and we had a fantastic day with the crew, cutting sticks in the woods and then taking them back to the workshop to show the process of creating the finished product.

“It’s always great to have the opportunity to show people what myself and Jacky do, and the craft that goes into creating the sticks. We can’t wait to see the finished piece later this month.”

Keith has been The Stick Man for almost 20 years and his wife Jacky joined the business 15 years ago.

He made the famous magical stick held by Emma Thompson’s Nanny McPhee, has provided walking sticks for stars, sportspeople, politicians and royalty, and even created a Staff for the Archbishop of Canterbury.

As well as creating his own sticks, The Stick Man is one of the country’s biggest supplier of stickmaking materials and tools.

John Craven is believed to have stayed in The Feathers Hotel and visited other local businesses whilst in Helmsley for the filming.

Click here for more information about Keith and Jacky’s work.