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Permaculture Design Course - Creating Resilient Communities - South London


  • Loughborough Farm The Triangle, Loughborough Road Brixton United Kingdon (map)
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7 weekend between April 7th and July 8th 2018

Various venues around South London

 

The Permaculture Design Course is a 72-hour often life-changing experience, accredited by the UK Permaculture Association. 

Over the period of 7 weekends we will explore practical and creative solutions for building resilient communities and designing abundant eco-systems. 

We will discover how we can work with, rather than against nature to fulfil our human needs whilst caring for the earth and the people. 

The course has a strong practical emphasis on ecological and social design thinking and how this can be applied in different parts of our life and society.

I feel like I know a secret and want to share it with the world
— Natasha, after taking the 2016 Creating Resilient Communities PDC

Dates, Subjects, Venues

 

April 7/8: Design & Principles -- Loughborough Farm

April 21/22: Maps, Soil & Food -- Sutton Community Farm tbc, Loughborough Farm

May 5/6: Self & Community -- Residential weekend out of London, venue tbc

May 19/20: Water & Trees -- Loughborough Farm

June 9/10: Shelter & Energy -- Treadwell, Meadow Orchard Project (Crouch End)

Juny 23/24: Design Clinic & Transition Livelihoods -- Remakery, Loughborough Farm

July 7/8: Presentations & Celebrations -- Loughborough Farm

To receive the certificate, there is a requirement of making at least 11 of the 14 days, including the first two and the last two on which participants will present their designs.

See pictures from previous courses here:

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Loughborough Farm

Our main venue for the course is Loughborough Farm (see the facebook and updates page here) and its Farm Shop/Cafe The Platform just next to Loughborough Junction, Brixton. 

Loughborough Farm is a community food-growing project in Loughborough Junction. It started in 2013 and grows food for its volunteers and local residents. The space acts as an outdoor community centre where people come together to learn, socialise and improve their health and wellbeing. Activities include growing, DIY, orchard care, market stalls and crop planning, as well as cookery workshops, training and events at the volunteer-run farm café.

This year the farm is at an important crossroads. The farm site is to be developed as LJ Works, an affordable workspace for local people, meaning the garden is due to be redesigned in 2018.

Having the PDC at the farm will allow us to design and explore real and practical, environmental solutions for community spaces in an urban environment. In groups, participants will design aspects of the farm and their orchard/forest garden space.

Other venues

We will also visit different venues in South London (and one in Crouch End) on various days of the course. These will include (tbc soon) the Brixton Remakery, The Quadrangle Trust in Kent, the CSA project Sutton Community Farm, Treadwell, a semi-detached home in Streatham Hill being transformed into a Permaculture Project, and the Meadow Orchard Project in Crouch End.

We will spend one residential weekend at the Quadrangle Trust in Kent exploring health and wellbeing, community building, and connection to the natural world. The Quadrangle Trust is a great space for the exploration of ecology, conservation, spirituality and creative education and has sustainable building features, gardens and a forest garden. It is situated in an idyllic setting in the Darent Valley close to Shoreham in Kent and easy to get to from London.

Tutors

Lead tutor of the course is Michel Thill.

Michel has studied Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning with a special interest in the relationship between ecological and cultural renewal. He's come across Permaculture during his studies and was drawn to its is able to pull together stands of ecological design and renewal, community/village building, social justice and personal change. 

Michel has travelled extensively, staying in eco-communities across India and South-East Asia as well as Europe, learning about and applying Permaculture Design and Deep Ecology ideas and knowledge wherever possible.

Michel is currently based in London where he teaches Permaculture and runs various community and food growing projects through Social Landscapes. Inspired by Permaculture, Forest Gardening and Ecovillage Design principles, Social Landscapes seeks to create flourishing and resilient micro-cultures within London through transformative Permaculture training and engaging people in outdoors to reinvent the public spaces they live in.

Michel has been teaching Permaculture and Deep Ecology across Europe over the last couple of years. He sees permaculture as a dance with nature, where nature takes the lead to create more harmonious places and futures for all.

Co-facilitators will be Tish Vail and Naomi Allen. 

Other guest teachers likely to include (details following and tbc): Duncan Law, chair and co-founder of Transition Town Brixton; Linda Royles, founder and manager of Cob in the Community; Kate Allardyce, founder and coordinator at the Meadow Orchard Project.

What will the course cover?

Permaculture is a dance with nature - in which nature leads.
— Bill Mollison - Co-originator of the Permaculture concept
PDC London

Much of our Permaculture Design Course is focused around our most fundamental human needs. The design methodology and the Permaculture principles that are thought can be used by anyone and be integrated in any job or life situation, not only gardening. You will learn about the Permaculture way of setting up food systems, interacting with the natural world, building community, organising people, learning – all of that inspired by the example of the natural world. 

Topics covered on the course include, but are not limited to:

• Ethics and principles of permaculture
• Systems thinking, design process and methodology
• Soil structure, ecology and land regeneration
• Cultivated ecology: gardens and farms, agroforestry
• Community development and organisation
• Personal health and healthy societies
• Building effective learning groups
• Real wealth, money and sustainable exchange
• Urban challenges and urban permaculture, including retrofitting
• Energy conservation and renewable energy
• Transition Towns and transition livelihood

Each weekend includes theory and some practical hands on work. There will be plenty of design time and participants will work in groups to design aspects of Loughborough Farm. The designs will be presented on the last two days of the course to the rest of the group and members of the farm. During the design sessions you will have the opportunity to integrate the things you learn during the course and you will have support from the tutors. 

We will share handouts and other helpful information on an online learning platform and encourage you to build learning groups with other course participants to support each other through sharing, experimenting and reflecting.

Tutors

Lead tutor of the course is Michel Thill.

Michel has studied Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning with a special interest in the relationship between ecological and cultural renewal. He's come across Permaculture during his studies and was drawn to its is able to pull together stands of ecological design and renewal, community/village building, social justice and personal change. 

Michel has travelled extensively, staying in eco-communities across India and South-East Asia as well as Europe, learning about and applying Permaculture Design and Deep Ecology ideas and knowledge wherever possible.

Michel is currently based in London where he teaches Permaculture and runs various community and food growing projects through Social Landscapes. Inspired by Permaculture, Forest Gardening and Ecovillage Design principles, Social Landscapes seeks to create flourishing and resilient micro-cultures within London through transformative Permaculture training and engaging people in outdoors to reinvent the public spaces they live in.

Michel has been teaching Permaculture and Deep Ecology across Europe over the last couple of years. He sees permaculture as a dance with nature, where nature takes the lead to create more harmonious places and futures for all.

Co-facilitators will be Tish Vail and Naomi Allen. 

Other guest teachers likely to include (details following and tbc): Duncan Law, chair and co-founder of Transition Town Brixton; Linda Royles, founder and manager of Cob in the Community; Kate Allardyce, founder and coordinator at the Meadow Orchard Project.

What do past participants say?

“The course was a fantastic learning process and a truly enjoyable experience. The tutors were very knowledgeable and transmitted Permaculture as an approach to living, thinking, doing, making and being. The ethics, principles and thinking tools of Permaculture have become a new mindset.” – Raquel, PhD student in Food Policy

"It has completely changed my perspective towards every aspect of my life: my health, my relationship with family and friends, my relationship with the Earth." - Anonymous

“An inspirational personal growth adventure that I would recommend to everyone. The urban PDC is particularly useful for building practice into your daily lives and offers a response to many issues that we are facing whilst building a supportive family and community of Permaculture practisers to encourage future creativity. The tutors are the warmest and exciting people and Treadwell is a space of calm, enthusiasm and mindfulness. “ – Sam

"The course gave me direction and the opportunity of transforming a passion into a job." - Anonymous

“Studying the Permaculture method within an urban context was both empowering and thought-provoking. Presented with such realistic opportunities for positive change within the confines of the city and studying with likeminded people was extremely heartwarming. The mixture of practical and theory along with passionate teachers and guest speakers plus a variety of venues kept my interest and allowed for genuine integration of the teachings. I’m well prepared for continued use of the Permaculture tools and happily supported by the community that I’m now a part of, I cannot recommend this course enough.” – Zoe, Finance Assistant at Comic Relief

Pricing & Registration

To register for the course, please fill in the form below. We will then be in touch with details about the course and payment. The payment will complete your registration and secure your place. Please be aware that this course overbooked last year - so book early to guarantee your spot.

If there are any questions, please contact Michel michel@sociallandscapes.co.uk or Tish on 07726 745347. 

The course is offered on a sliding scale according to income to make it affordable for everyone. Payment by instalments is also possible. Early bird rates are available if paid in full before January 15th 2018.

Income below £15000pa – £380 – Early Bird £360

Income between £15000 and 25000pa – £540 – Early Bird £510

Income more than £25000pa – £720 – Early Bird £680

Course fee includes 14 days of course tuition including one residential weekend at which food is provided. On all other days, participants are asked to bring lunch to share. Tea and refreshments will be provided.

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