AN ENVIRONMENTALIST has brought to life the sounds of a famous wood by laying the them down on a CD.

Music man Lee Gregory, 40, has spent over 100 hours recording and composing the 42-minute symphony using the sounds of nature.

Lee, who sells music memorabilia online, has been an acoustic musician for a couple of years making and recording music using natural sounds.

He single-handedly ran the project on behalf of Offshoots Permaculture Project, where he has volunteered since 2005.

The Offshoots Permaculture Project, managed by Blackburn-based Groundwork Pennine Lancashire, is now a thriving one-acre organic fruit and vegetable garden and eco-friendly buildings that are renewably powered and used daily. Sustainable living and traditional skills are taught at the site within the grounds of Towneley Hall, Burnley.

Lee, of South View Street, Todmorden, said: “The Offshoots Symphony’ CD, which provides ambient sounds, provides a welcome change from panpipes.

“There were lots of nice sounds there like bees and frogs and different types of birds.

“It’s melodic rhythmic music. It’s all constructed compositions using the different sounds I've recorded.”

Lee’s favourite sounds from the symphony include mating frogs, bees in the hive and the blackbird’s dawn chorus.

He even spent nights at the site to enable him to catch the early morning bird songs.

“The sound of the blackbirds is my favourite. I recorded them from 4.30am and they sang a variety of calls for about 30 minutes. In the morning there was a melee of birds singing. I did record some crows but they ruined the ambience.

“I managed to record the sound of the frogs, which were only at the site for two weeks in March while they mated.

“To record the bees I had to get into the bee keepers suit and when we opened the hive we had bees crawling over the microphone which produced some interesting sounds.”

The album contains five tracks: Small Things Grow; Mellow Birds; Blackbird, Bee and the Frog; Wild Things and Woven. It was recorded between March 2010 and March 2011 and took nine months to edit and compose.

Lee used his own specialist recording equipment and donated his time to the project.

He added: “We had to take the background noises out like wind and traffic and barking dogs. I whittled down the noises that sounded good and used them in the compositions.

  • The CD is available from, the Towneley Hall shop and Offshoots Permaculture Project at Towneley Hall.