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Permies in the UK

aman inavan


Joined: Nov 20, 2011
Posts: 81
Location: Cornwall UK
Hi All

I was just wondering how many permies regulars were from the UK

aman


Hey farmer, farmer, put away your DDT
I don't care about spots on my apples,
Leave me the birds and the bees - please
Sam White


Joined: Mar 08, 2011
Posts: 211
Location: Caerphilly, Wales, UK
    
    1
Hey mate,

I'm on permies.com every 1-2 days so I guess I'm a regular. Would be nice to see a bit more activity in the Europe sub-forum or maybe a thread for the Brits.

Sam


"A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in."
Katy Whitby-last


Joined: Apr 18, 2011
Posts: 151
Location: Scotland
I regularly check in but don't post often as most people are much more knowledgeable than me.
Chris Ingham


Joined: Jan 15, 2012
Posts: 5
Hi Guys.

I've just signed up today. The exact same thing on my mind.... Any English folk here?

I'm studying building surveying at Uni and I love the eco side of construction. One day I wanna be building my own Earthship... but I dont wanna get ahead of myself just yet! I'll be online checking this site out often.

If anyone out there in the UK is undergoing any projects.... earthships ideally..... but any sort of eco build. I'd love of offer my services as a labourer if I'm free.

Before Uni I was labouring for 4 years on sites. I'll do it for free.... or maybe alittle food to nibble but it's more about learning on the job to be honest.

Hope to speak soon guys and girls
Sam White


Joined: Mar 08, 2011
Posts: 211
Location: Caerphilly, Wales, UK
    
    1
Hey Chris, welcome to the community. If you (or anyone else) is interested in the eco side of construction I highly recommend visiting the Centre for Alternative Technology in Wales - amazing place to find information, engage with the people who live and breath sustainability. They also have a free information service where you can phone up and get questions answered by some very knowledgeable people.

If you have the time and money to do the MSc Architecture: Advanced Environmental and Energy Studies course DO IT! I'm half way through and I've had the most amazing time - the lecturers are incredible, the students inspiring and passionate, and the campus is astonishing.

If you are interested and have specific questions drop me a line. Or you could always ring CAT up and arrange to spend a xouple of days sitting in on lectures, meals and staying in their accommodation so that you get a feel for it all.
Chris Ingham


Joined: Jan 15, 2012
Posts: 5
Alright Mate

Thanks for the welcome!

I here there are a few self sustained communities in Wales. If I get the chance I'll head over to CAT.

I'm in my first year of building Surveying BSc so I'm looking to learn as much as possible. Theres an eco conference down in London this March. Free tickets at ecobuild.co.uk if your interested. I;m gonna head down if I'm free.

Sam are you studying a full degree..... if so what stage are you at? If you dont mind me asking.

Like I said. Anyone working on any big projects and after labour give me a shout. I'll be checking regularly and it'd be good to exchange current and new ideas in the future.

Speak soon

Chris
Katy Whitby-last


Joined: Apr 18, 2011
Posts: 151
Location: Scotland
Whereabouts are you Chris?
Sam White


Joined: Mar 08, 2011
Posts: 211
Location: Caerphilly, Wales, UK
    
    1
Chris Ingham wrote:Alright Mate

Thanks for the welcome!

I here there are a few self sustained communities in Wales. If I get the chance I'll head over to CAT.

I'm in my first year of building Surveying BSc so I'm looking to learn as much as possible. Theres an eco conference down in London this March. Free tickets at ecobuild.co.uk if your interested. I;m gonna head down if I'm free.

Sam are you studying a full degree..... if so what stage are you at? If you dont mind me asking.

Like I said. Anyone working on any big projects and after labour give me a shout. I'll be checking regularly and it'd be good to exchange current and new ideas in the future.

Speak soon

Chris


Aye, there are a few. I think there's one in the Brecon Beacons and another in the South West... Wish I could remember their names!

I'm already planning to make my way to Ecobuild with a bunch of students from CAT. The London Eco Fair is another one to look at in June or July (a CAT student is organising it) and the Sunrise Festival is also in June. The Professional Diploma students (architects) at CAT are planning to run a 'weekend in the woods' to demonstrate green building design which should be good - that will probably be in April. There's a fair bit going on it seems.

I have a degree in business and enterprise management which I finished in 2010 but just concentrating on the MSc for now. Living with the parents to save money but they bought an 18 acre smallholding at the end of last year so I'm mucking in. We might be building a workshop at some point so I might give you a yell if it happens (probably won't be for a while).
Chris Ingham


Joined: Jan 15, 2012
Posts: 5
Hey Katy

I'm from Bradford studying in Leeds. How far north are you?

Your right Sam, there's plenty going on. I'm going to have to spread the word about the ecobuild at Uni, see who's up for it. I saw a programme on the box about the self sustained villages in Wales but I cant remember the names either. They've built some pretty cool homes though. For me the challenge is making an earthship eco friendly but ensuring I can still run the luxuries of a modern home, TV, music, hot showers and keep it warm. want to see if the balance bewteen the two is acheivable.

You realise with that much land you could build your very own earthship and nobody would even know it was there! lol. Or even your own natural swimming pool, they look pretty cool..... I can only hope that one day.....! lol Y

Do keep me informed about your possible build.... I presume you'll be the grand designer. And as I say if I'm free I'll come down and muck in

Sam White


Joined: Mar 08, 2011
Posts: 211
Location: Caerphilly, Wales, UK
    
    1
Ah, I have a few mates in Leeds - one of them is involved in a computer recycling scheme that's pretty cool. He also knows a lot about Permaculture, rocket stoves and baking bread!

I'm sure it's possible to live comfortably in any eco home. My philosophy is to get rid of the TV, reduce my dependency on modern appliances (no dishwasher, no tumble drier, wood fired range if possible, wood stove...). I'm not an advocate of returning to the dark ages though, I just want to minimize my carbon footprint as much as possible and increase resilience within my lifestyle. I'm pretty interested in the tiny house movement... Although if I were to build one I'd design it with modularity in mind.

How come you became interested in earthships? Personally I worry about their embodied carbon (potentially lots of concrete) and the risk of leaks/damp. My preferred building materials are timber and straw especially as I could pretty much build one with a few mates with handtools and local materials.

I probably will be the one to push the design towards using recycled timber and hopefully a green roof but I'd probably have to get one of my architect mates to help me with the design. I'd probably use the Walter Segal method and it's pretty easy to bodge recycled timber so it's the right length or whatever. A natural swimming pool would be awesome but low on the list of priorities especially as we live on a hill!

Aside from a few vague building ideas we're starting to push ahead with our woodland planting and veg bed creations. We've just have a bloke round from the Forestry Commission about getting a grant for about 6 acres of mixed species coppice with standards which is pretty exciting. The veg beds are going to be on contour... We've started with sheet mulching but we've got a lack of organic matter. We'll be getting in touch with local stables and tree surgeons at some point to try and remedy that.

For the past few months we've just been getting settled in really so it's nice that things are kicking off. We did do a fair bit of hedge laying though which was fun. Got plenty of firewood seasoning for next winter!
Katy Whitby-last


Joined: Apr 18, 2011
Posts: 151
Location: Scotland
Chris Ingham wrote:Hey Katy

I'm from Bradford studying in Leeds. How far north are you?



I'm a very long way north Aberdeenshire.

We need to replace a stable that lost its roof in the recent winds and I'd like to do something with a wood frame and straw bales but I'm not sure how it would work on our soil.
Sam White


Joined: Mar 08, 2011
Posts: 211
Location: Caerphilly, Wales, UK
    
    1
Katy Whitby-last wrote:
Chris Ingham wrote:Hey Katy

I'm from Bradford studying in Leeds. How far north are you?



I'm a very long way north Aberdeenshire.

We need to replace a stable that lost its roof in the recent winds and I'd like to do something with a wood frame and straw bales but I'm not sure how it would work on our soil.


I have family fairly close to you then Katy... They live near Dundee. Actually, they keep horses (and sheep) too.

In regards to timber/straw buildings you don't really need to worry about the soil apart from how deep it is. The beauty of timber frame buildings is that they don't require massive foundations like conventional brick built buildings - generally all you need is a number of piers to rest posts on and the piers rest upon the bedrock. The fact that you're talking about building a stable might complicate matters slightly as timber buildings are typically raised a little off the ground. I suppose you could incorporate a ramp of some description to facilitate entry/exit. There may be other solutions that you could consider.

One major consideration for straw bale buildings, especially in temperate regions where rain is prevalent, is keeping the straw dry from both the rain and splashing (from water running off the roof/rain hitting the ground). I have seen straw buildings built on plinths made with dry stone and a more conventional way would be with brick or breeze-blocks (might need some light foundations laid). Numerous people have talked about using large overhanging roofs to direct runoff away from the base of the building to avoid splashing water hitting the walls. You'd probably want to clad the outside of the building with timber rather than use a clay render (or similar) if you're thinking of using natural/sustainable materials.

Oh, as for keeping the roof on, have you though of using a green roof? You might have to adapt/strengthen the structure/foundations to get one on I guess but it would be heavier. That might help keep it on in future. I'm no expert on building design though or green roofs though

Hope that helps.
Katy Whitby-last


Joined: Apr 18, 2011
Posts: 151
Location: Scotland
Sam White wrote:
Katy Whitby-last wrote:
Chris Ingham wrote:Hey Katy

I'm from Bradford studying in Leeds. How far north are you?



I'm a very long way north Aberdeenshire.

We need to replace a stable that lost its roof in the recent winds and I'd like to do something with a wood frame and straw bales but I'm not sure how it would work on our soil.


I have family fairly close to you then Katy... They live near Dundee. Actually, they keep horses (and sheep) too.

In regards to timber/straw buildings you don't really need to worry about the soil apart from how deep it is. The beauty of timber frame buildings is that they don't require massive foundations like conventional brick built buildings - generally all you need is a number of piers to rest posts on and the piers rest upon the bedrock. The fact that you're talking about building a stable might complicate matters slightly as timber buildings are typically raised a little off the ground. I suppose you could incorporate a ramp of some description to facilitate entry/exit. There may be other solutions that you could consider.

One major consideration for straw bale buildings, especially in temperate regions where rain is prevalent, is keeping the straw dry from both the rain and splashing (from water running off the roof/rain hitting the ground). I have seen straw buildings built on plinths made with dry stone and a more conventional way would be with brick or breeze-blocks (might need some light foundations laid). Numerous people have talked about using large overhanging roofs to direct runoff away from the base of the building to avoid splashing water hitting the walls. You'd probably want to clad the outside of the building with timber rather than use a clay render (or similar) if you're thinking of using natural/sustainable materials.

Oh, as for keeping the roof on, have you though of using a green roof? You might have to adapt/strengthen the structure/foundations to get one on I guess but it would be heavier. That might help keep it on in future. I'm no expert on building design though or green roofs though

Hope that helps.


That's really useful thanks.

Our soil issue is one of wetness. We are on heavy clay in an area of high rainfall so we would need to have some sort of foundation.

Why would timber cladding be better than clay render?

A green roof is definitely on my wish list but it is taking me some time to research plants that are both okay for green roofs and safe for horses as one of ours is a Clydesdale who can reach very high
Sam White


Joined: Mar 08, 2011
Posts: 211
Location: Caerphilly, Wales, UK
    
    1
Katy Whitby-last wrote:That's really useful thanks.

Our soil issue is one of wetness. We are on heavy clay in an area of high rainfall so we would need to have some sort of foundation.

Why would timber cladding be better than clay render?

A green roof is definitely on my wish list but it is taking me some time to research plants that are both okay for green roofs and safe for horses as one of ours is a Clydesdale who can reach very high


I don't think your wet soil/clay soil is a problem. It's just important that you sit the foundation piers on the bedrock.

Clay (and possibly lime) renders can be vulnerable to water damage and probably wouldn't last as long as cladding would. There may be finishes you could paint on the outside of the clay render but it's not something I've investigated before. Good timber to use for cladding is oak, sweet chestnut and Douglas fir because they last a fairly long time. You could use less resilient species and replace them more often, they're probably cheaper as well.

I wish I could help with the species to use on the roof. I'm pretty sure that you can use grasses... Sedum is fairly low growing and is very commonly used on green roofs because of their ability to endure the extremes of wet and dry. I have a feeling that you could plant a polyculture on the roof. I dunno, I'll ask some people who know a bit more than me about green roofs when I see them next (I bet there's some knowledgeable people on the forums).
Alison Thomas
volunteer

Joined: Jul 22, 2009
Posts: 933
Location: France
    
    8
Well we are from the UK - does that count? We used to live halfway between Edinburgh and Perth but moved here just over 3 years ago. I still find myself buying lots of permie stuff from the UK though - like heirloom seeds and things.

And CAT is just SO inspiring. We have family in Wales so whenever we visit we call into CAT too.
Chris Ingham


Joined: Jan 15, 2012
Posts: 5
So much has happened in just 2 days. Wow...... we're enterprising lol! But I dont know how to reply so I'll just post

Been on with first semester exams..... finished.... get in!

Sam. What drew me to the earthship was the discreteness, and how the wall of windows would create a chilled living environment and I love the idea of the sun warming it an the earth insulating it. I hear what your saying about the high volume of concrete but theres a few different designs out there to get round that. Like the walls being made out of recycled tyres rammed with earth. Once the earth is packed into them they're solid building blocks. Thick and quite water resistant..... rubber.... before any extra dpm is added. then theres the wooden roof. A glass wall, leaving just the floor. I've been thinkin about different designs but only briefly..... like a raised stone floor on stilts with hot air from a chimney passing beneath the floor, like the romans. Undoubtedly the easiest would be to pour a concrete insulated raft foundation, still a fair bit of concrete but alot less than a modern house. Any ideas welcome.

What your doing with your land sounds pretty epic. 6 acres? I imagine back breaking graft has got to go into that! I also like the sound of straw bales and timber construction. I bet the look, atmosphere, feel and warmth are all real gems. Have seen one already constructed? Do they smell a bit funky?

Katy. Thats along way north but i happen to have read abit about foundations not so long ago. The high water table doesn't stop you from building. But if you build straight on to it your stables will sink as the water is slowly squeezed out of the soil under the load of the barn..... maybe to the point your horse can eat the roof! And if it settles unevenly it can ruin your foundations and they crack.

You could either use pile foundations driving through the soil to a depth of solid stratum and build strip foundations of the piled concrete.

Use a steel rod inforced raft foundation so the load of the barn is spread evenly over a large area.

Use wide steel rod reinforced strip foundations.

Or, I think this the best, dig a moat around the stable and down the hill, fill it with stones, creating a drainage channel for groundwater to drain through. You can cover it over and the water will still drain. Then build your stable on the island.

But at least your soil is clay! Thats got a high plasticity and tends to settle evenly which is all good. When you thinking of building?


Alison Freeth-Thomas....... No..... You sellout!

lol I'm only playin course it counts........ come help us build!! lol

Xx
Sam White


Joined: Mar 08, 2011
Posts: 211
Location: Caerphilly, Wales, UK
    
    1
Chris Ingham wrote:Sam. What drew me to the earthship was the discreteness, and how the wall of windows would create a chilled living environment and I love the idea of the sun warming it an the earth insulating it. I hear what your saying about the high volume of concrete but theres a few different designs out there to get round that. Like the walls being made out of recycled tyres rammed with earth. Once the earth is packed into them they're solid building blocks. Thick and quite water resistant..... rubber.... before any extra dpm is added. then theres the wooden roof. A glass wall, leaving just the floor. I've been thinkin about different designs but only briefly..... like a raised stone floor on stilts with hot air from a chimney passing beneath the floor, like the romans. Undoubtedly the easiest would be to pour a concrete insulated raft foundation, still a fair bit of concrete but alot less than a modern house. Any ideas welcome.


Aye, I'm aware of the use of tires to construct the walls and to me that sounds like a sensible approach as opposed to creating a concrete 'shell' or something like that. If you did go for a concrete raft foundation, could lime-crete be used instead? I'm assuming it could.

Chris Ingham wrote:What your doing with your land sounds pretty epic. 6 acres? I imagine back breaking graft has got to go into that!


I'm planning to do as little hard graft as possible! But yeah, planting 6 acres of trees is going to be hard work... A few of my mates have expressed an interest in helping out though so we'll probably get some (almost) free labour - just have to provide food, booze and tools!

Aside from the 6 acres of woodland, we're going to be planting another 2-3 acres to veg and orchard. I'm reading the Earth Care Manual at the moment and I'm going to try and persuade the folks to have a look at food forestry/agro-forestry in order to maximise yields. My dad's already on-board with the no-dig approach to gardening so we've started laying out a load of sheet mulching. We're suffering from a lack of organic matter though. The other 9-10 acres are either going to be rented out as grazing land or left to go wild. We may try and encourage some additional species in the wild patches to increase biodiversity and introduce some new yields. In particular I'm looking as damp/acid loving fruit bushes to put on the wetter areas.

Chris Ingham wrote:I also like the sound of straw bales and timber construction. I bet the look, atmosphere, feel and warmth are all real gems. Have seen one already constructed? Do they smell a bit funky?


You're right about the look, atmosphere, feel and warmth - did you see Ben Law's straw bale house on Grand Designs? It was pretty spectacular! The one at CAT can smell a bit straw-like but I don't think there's anything wrong with that (unless you dislike the smell of straw!). I guess how strong the smell is can depend on the quality of the walls' finish.
Sam White


Joined: Mar 08, 2011
Posts: 211
Location: Caerphilly, Wales, UK
    
    1
Hey Chris, I just found a documentary about Mark Reynolds on Youtube. I don't know if you've heard of him but for about 30 years he's been a proponent of earthship biotecture. Thought you might be interested.

Linky
Jean Lippett


Joined: Jan 28, 2012
Posts: 8
Location: SW England
Hello, just found this site this year. so lots to catch up on. I'm in SW England with two 1 acre orchards, one of which shows up on 200 year old maps and is traditionally planted with apples, plums, quinces and pears, and a newer one which is more layered in the planting. I started that with a successful bid for 100 heritage apple trees at a closing down sale and have added peaches, apricots, gages, mulberries, pears, vines and more. Last year, bush fruit were added and now I'm going to plant strawberries and low ground cover plants.

My business is producing high quality photographic colour prints, and our new orchard has been planted with colour and pattern in mind, so that it will look stunning as well as tasting and smelling great. Martin Crawford, on the agroforestry course I attended, suggesting calling new projects 'underplanted orchards' when dealing with local planning authorities as something they'd understand better than permaculture or agroforestry and it so happens that's exactly what my beautiful piece of land is.

We also grow lots of vegetables and keep bees and chickens
Katy Whitby-last


Joined: Apr 18, 2011
Posts: 151
Location: Scotland
Hi Jean. Your place sounds great - I'm very jealous
Chris Ingham


Joined: Jan 15, 2012
Posts: 5
Alright Sam

I know about Mark Reynolds. I saw the documentary and took his book off CIS.com. He's the root of all the inspiration for the idea. People have been following his idea and attending seminars all over the world. They do some charity work abroad as well but sometimes struggle to find the funding so only half finish jobs..... but they're stilll happy to spread the idea and the knowledge, good guys!! The only thing is, he's from a warm climate so I have no idea if the Earthships will work well in the UK. Theres one at Brighton University and a few others dotted about so I'll have to research them and see wat works well and what fails. Like I said.... for me its still early doors. At least 3 yrs of uni left!

I like the sound of Lime crete you mentioned. But again its something that I'd have to look at when using in a earthship in UK climate because of its breathability. The whole idea is to create a really well insulated bubble with adequate ventilation, so if any moisture or air gets through the floor it may disrupt or cause thermal bridging, turning a potentially classy warm cosy natural vibe for my home into a dark dank hole in the floor! But the idea defo sounds better than concrete.

Sheet mulching sounds like a good idea to prevent back and bending with a shovel. I was on a site where they used rubber sheeting with hexagonal holes instead of laying a hardcore foundation for a tarmac path. It went straight on top of woodland ground and still stands strong today. I presume you like no digging for enviromental reasons?

Everyones place on here sounds pretty epic. Acres left right an centre!! Just to inform you all.... unless I find myself heading over to a warm climate in Canada.... I will be needing a small plot at the bottom of an acre in maybe 10 to 20 years time lol
Rick Koobs


Joined: Feb 09, 2012
Posts: 1
I'm not originally from the UK, but that's where I live since January 2010. Just found this site this morning, while looking over a site recommended by my Permaculture Design course instructor. Hope to learn a lot from folks on this forum, and get to know some of you better.

Here's my quick profile, cribbed from my Transition Network profile (and posted here somewhere, too):

I'm an ex-pat from the American South (Virginia and North Carolina), happily relocated to Norfolk, UK since January 2010 with my British wife. We're currently living in Norwich, but looking to relocate to the vicinity of Downham Market in West Norfolk, the better to become more involved with the good folks of Downham & Villages in Transition. Daily I become increasingly committed to walking the sustainable path, living and working to promote and express Transition principles.

In late 2010 I participated in a 2-day Transition training course in Ipswich, Suffolk.

In the Spring and Summer of 2011 I took the six-week Permaculture Design Course offered by Downham & Villages in Transition under the auspices of the Permaculture Association. I'm now certified, but I desire to go for the full Diploma in due time.

My background is journalism, advertising, pre-press and graphic design. I am experienced and up-to-date with the latest Adobe Creative Suite applications (Illustrator, Photoshop, InDesign) and am fairly WordPress conversant, though of late I'm mainly an "artist-in-progress," studying drawing and painting in Norfolk. I enjoy working in watercolour and oil, painting landscape, still life and portraiture, as well as drawing the human figure.

But permaculture is where my heart is really at now... and doing my part to further the transition.
Stephanie Newman


Joined: Feb 12, 2012
Posts: 4
Yet another one!

I'm a soapmaker in Sawbridgeworth, Herts. I've only recently ordered the book on rocket mass heaters and thought I would try to make a small one for a shed to make it into a spare room. Does anyone in the UK know what the insurance rules are about this. I am loathe to call them in fear of negative news as they probably never heard of this technology (they were worried that my making soap at home would burn it down and that took ages to rectify). Many thanks!
Rob Crook


Joined: Feb 21, 2012
Posts: 1
Hi everyone,

I'm Rob in North Hampshire and I'm a student. I've just bought quarter of an acre in my village. Everything is still in the planning stages and the plans keep changing but I'm making progress. As I only have a small piece of land it's quite a challenge to fit everything. I'm picking up three Kune-Kunes in a few weeks' time and about to plant a few fruit trees to get me started. The plan is for part of it to work as a small forest garden, taking the principles and scaling it down. One side of my land is bordered by a stream which I'd like to see fish return to. Does anyone have any ideas on how I could encourage them? I know in some of the other local streams there are fish so they are around. Also, whilst paddling in the stream I've found quite a few empty "mussel" shells. It's possible that someone has bought some from the shops, thrown the shells in the river and they've been washed down to me, but they don't seem like the usual sea mussels. Will post a picture when I'm home on the weekend.

Anyway, there's my introduction, and I look forward to getting to know you all.

Rob
Kimberly Jones


Joined: Apr 11, 2012
Posts: 1
Hi, all. My name is Kimberly, new here. Just want to say hi and wish you a nice day.
Katy Whitby-last


Joined: Apr 18, 2011
Posts: 151
Location: Scotland
Hi Kimberley - glad you've joined us
Diane Hunt


Joined: Apr 15, 2012
Posts: 9
Location: UK at present, but go between Australia & UK, & have Canuck roots!
*puts hand up...* I am in Canterbury, Kent UK although I also have connection with Melbourne, Australia as I have family there so do long living for a while visits regularly - when I can afford the fare! Anyone else here in my area? I returned last Feb.
Diane


Empowerment, not just protest. My aim is to get as many folk as poss growing non-hybrid/patented food freely everywhere! There are more of us on bottom of pyramid, so we have the power!
Dave Quinn


Joined: Mar 26, 2012
Posts: 66
Hi from Blackpool.

No significant land at moment but trying to work with containers to grow as many veg as poss.

Would love to find somewhere with a big garden or even a smallholding but afraid land prices are too expensive at the moment.

Diane Hunt


Joined: Apr 15, 2012
Posts: 9
Location: UK at present, but go between Australia & UK, & have Canuck roots!
I am in a rental property and have some problems to turn into solutions! Money is also very short.

There is a back garden with plenty of sun and lots of fence to use. Yet the patio door runners are broken and the owner has been saying she will fix for ages now but not doing. We would do it ourselves but the glass door is extremely heavy.

Also, the back gate is difficult to open. Out front of the house is quite shady as the house itself is blocking sun out.

In front of the houses is a large rectangle of lawn, in sun most of the day. I am musing over creating a permaculture community garden there and have been trying to get a feel for the opinion of the locals, mainly students at the local university, about this. Some really like the idea, whereas others say it will just be vandalized by students returning home inebriated late at night.

At the moment I am mainly making observations, putting compost (including veg and fruit scraps, tea bags and coffee grounds) in a pile mixed with crumpled paper - and then covering with dry leaves as I cannot afford a compost bin!

Diane
Alison Thomas
volunteer

Joined: Jul 22, 2009
Posts: 933
Location: France
    
    8
Diane, it might be worth seeing if your council offer compost bins. Ours in Scotland had some for free and others, even bigger, for just 15 GBP.
Diane Hunt


Joined: Apr 15, 2012
Posts: 9
Location: UK at present, but go between Australia & UK, & have Canuck roots!
Thanks, Alison, and yes they used to give them away free or really cheap. And I know about this firsthand because ironically I was a compost advisor, trained by council to go out and help educate others...and we were encouraging this by giving away free bins! Yet no longer. But our fence blew down in some wind a while back, and since then a new bit of fence has been put up and my plan is to build a compost bin out of the old fencing. Just need to get a round toit first lol! And look for some good wooden compost bin designs.
Wenderlynn Bagnall


Joined: Jan 08, 2012
Posts: 73
Location: United Kingdom
Hello everyone I'm from Hertford in Hertfordshire. I think it will be a good idea to create a UK site not that we should distance ourselves from the main site too much as it's brilliant and I'm constantly on here. I've got loads of good info from various people who are really helpful and the Paul Wheaton podcasts are 'awesome' as Paul would say. If you've not heard any you should get downloading. Maybe the moderator of this thread can assist in getting a UK string going.

Stephanie where do you sell your soaps?

My husband and I are starting a gardening group up in Hertford. The idea is to raise awareness of permaculture. Anyone from the surrounding areas are more than welcome to join us.


http://northdevonpermaculture.com/
https://www.facebook.com/NorthDevonPermaculture
Burra Maluca
Mother Tree

Joined: Apr 03, 2010
Posts: 5040
Location: Portugal Zone 9 Mediterranean Climate
    
193
Wenderlynn Bagnall wrote: Maybe the moderator of this thread can assist in getting a UK string going.


New boards are generally made according to how much use they get. If there's enough traffic on the 'Europe' board to justify splitting off a separate 'UK' one, then I'll see if I can put a word in.

In the meantime, just pitch in and get posting photos, questions, events, anything you like.

Oh, and I *was* a Brit, but these days I'm Portuguese. Well, nearly...


How permies.com works

What is a Mother Tree ?
Wenderlynn Bagnall


Joined: Jan 08, 2012
Posts: 73
Location: United Kingdom
Excellent! Sounds good Burra. Once a brit always a brit.
ray salter


Joined: Jul 21, 2012
Posts: 3
hi all
i am a newbie to the site and looking for like minded people. i am a hydroponicist by trade but working at developing bio nutrients to transform farming in the UK. does anyone else in wales want to help develop this?
don't be shy.
Ray
Sam White


Joined: Mar 08, 2011
Posts: 211
Location: Caerphilly, Wales, UK
    
    1
Hi Ray, welcome to the forum! Could you tell us a little more about your work?

Sam
ray salter


Joined: Jul 21, 2012
Posts: 3
Sam White wrote:Hi Ray, welcome to the forum! Could you tell us a little more about your work?

Sam


hi sam
i have been in the hydroponics business well before it ever was a business. Starting out with friends in the Netherlands and along with others around the world have helped develop systems and nutrients as well as tea's, enzymes, bacteria's, growing mediums the list goes on.
I am looking for someone interested in helping me develop and perfect a bio nutrient system i have in mind that will transform any land putting back the ecology that is missing and speed up Permaculture.
I could do with someone close to where i am living to help with this as i have been very ill for the last year and can't travel for a while. A good understanding of microbiology of course will be helpful but not a necessity as long as you know what the hell i am on about.
Sam White


Joined: Mar 08, 2011
Posts: 211
Location: Caerphilly, Wales, UK
    
    1
Hi again Ray,

It sounds like you're up to some very interesting things! I'd offer to help out but my knowledge of microbiology is basically zero. However, I might know someone who'd, at the very least, be very interested in your work and may be willing/able to assist you. Will point him in your direction!

Sam
ray salter


Joined: Jul 21, 2012
Posts: 3
Sam White wrote:Hi again Ray,

It sounds like you're up to some very interesting things! I'd offer to help out but my knowledge of microbiology is basically zero. However, I might know someone who'd, at the very least, be very interested in your work and may be willing/able to assist you. Will point him in your direction!

Sam


thank you sam, that would be great.
all the best
Ray
Tim Crowhurst


Joined: Jun 18, 2012
Posts: 45
Location: Bedford, England: zone 8/AHS 2
    
    1
Hi all, I live in Bedford but I'm originally from Ilford.

I'm a member of Bedford Quaker meeting, which has links to loads of local eco-groups like Zero Carbon Castle (a local Transition group) and Bedfordshire Climate Change Forum. I'm very keen on living as greenly as possible. One of my current big projects is building a raised vegetable bed at the Quaker meeting house, as many members are elderly or disabled and a raised bed will allow them to get involved in growing vegetables. Hopefully when people see how easy it is they will decide to grow more food in their own gardens.

Currently I grow some of my own food on an allotment I share with friends, but my long-term goal is to buy some land and create a homestead, growing fruit & veg and raising cockerels for food, and using coppiced willow and PV for energy. It will need to be big enough to support several members of my family though - my parents and aunt & uncle are all keen on building a shared ecobungalow for their impending retirement, and it makes sense to combine the two. My uncle and cousin are builders, my father is pretty good at DIY, my parents, aunt and I are keen gardeners, and we're all good with animals, so between us it should be doable. Everything will have to be planned well in advance however: my aunt has rheumatoid arthritis, so we'll have to design the homestead around her potential long-term needs as much as possible.
 
 
subject: Permies in the UK
 
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