Introducing our collaborators
Having been involved in the permaculture movement for decades we have many friends who we work with. And we are fortunate to be able to collaborate with many highly experienced and respected facilitators from around the world. We are very grateful to them for all the shared wisdom, storytelling and laughter.
Andy Goldring is Chief Executive of the Permaculture Association, a post he has held since 1999. He is currently working on a series of international network building projects including: the European Permaculture Network; Ecolise (Transition Towns, Ecovillage Networks, Permaculture and other Community Led Sustainability initiatives); and the Permaculture Co-Lab – an initiative that seeks to enhance the coherence and effectiveness of local to global permaculture networks.
In 2018, Andy submitted an entry to the Global Challenges Foundation's $5M 'New Shape' prize, to develop his thinking about strategy for the global permaculture network. 2702 people entered and 14 made it to the final, including Andy.
Andy lives in Yorkshire and is an active teacher and designer and contributor to local initiatives including Leeds Love it Share It CIC, Feed Leeds and the Leeds Permaculture Network. He cycles to work, tends a small garden and lives with his family in a retrofitted Victorian terraced house.
Andy has worked on several projects and working groups with both Chris and Looby over the last 15 years. Looby collaborated closely with Andy when she was trustee and chair of the Permaculture Association between 2001 and 2006. Chris has been involved with the LAND project and international working groups.
I'm really looking forward to returning to Applewood again this year. A beautiful site, wild and productive, with wonderful people at its heart, Chris, Looby and family. I've worked with them both over the years and hugely respect their work, so its going to be very exciting to teach, learn and facilitate with them again within the realm of cultural emergence.
Since 2004 he has taught over 80 two-week design courses, something he has no intention of stopping. He feels that it's a privilege to have the opportunity to teach "something that can make a real difference in all our lives". In the spring of 2012 Permanent Publications published his first book 'Permaculture Design - a Step-by-Step Guide', which evolved from a set of design course worksheets. Aranya is currently writing a second book, about a subject he’s especially fascinated by, the application of systems thinking and patterns in permaculture design.
Aranya has been collaborating with Looby and Chris over the last 17 years. We have been part of a leading teaching partnership, Designed Visions since 2004. We have co-facilitated many Permaculture Design Courses and Training of Teachers courses over the years. More recently Looby and Aranya have created a new course Learning the language of systems and patterns, which reflects their current specialisms and passions. Aranya will be back at Applewood in 2019 for an Observation and Mapping course.
Applewood shares permaculture in a positive and profound way, planting the seeds for visitors to bring inspiration and practical applications of permaculture home to their lives and landscapes. Exploring the new creative edge of permaculture design methods and process, Applewood shares both the visionary work of Looby Macnamara and the foundational work of permaculture pioneer Chris Evans in a balanced transmission that can help unlock peoples potential. Visiting and learning at Applewood has brought great joy, passion and evolutionary learning into my life. Learning from Looby and Chris has given so much benefit to my life and work, I feel a debt of gratitude for all the upgrades and unlocks that I have been gifted by my relationship to Applewood and the amazing community that works, plays and grows together there.
Jon Young is the founder of the 8 Shields Institute. He is an acknowledged expert on mentoring especially with respect to deep nature connection and culture. Jon was mentored himself by numerous Native Elders from traditional cultures of Europe, Africa and North America; he also has been mentored by practitioners of music, martial arts, life-coaching, health & wellbeing, and business. Jon is an inspirational storyteller who has been invited all over the world to share his vision of a truly regenerative and peaceful world. Jon is author of What the Robin knows, and co-author of Coyote's Guide to connecting with nature. Jon’s current projects are geared to manifest the vision of humans returning to balance with the natural world and one another.
Jon and Looby have been collaborating since 2016. They have been working together to emerge new tools and wisdom with the Cultural Emergence toolkit. Over the last 18 months, Looby has also been mentoring the 8 Shields Institute to use the Design Web to support their restructuring and expansion. They have co-taught together with the Cultural Emergence Leadership Training, and online Cultural Emergence Design course and the Activating Cultural Emergence module in the US in 2018.
The spirit of this land is healing
Applewood is a very beautiful place, a rural retreat where I can relax, engage in deep learning and connect intimately with the natural world. I love the dynamic flexibility of working with Looby as it allows for a creative, emergent process where new understandings and insights can emerge for all involved.
Peter is an international Permaculture teacher, designer and mentor, with a specialism in social and personal regenerative design. He has been teaching and facilitating Permaculture courses since 2007, and now leads PDCs, introductory and specialised courses around Europe and the tropics. He is passionate about co-creating temporary immersive community learning experiences, and their power to transform and empower people - connecting participants to nature, themselves and the wider community. Peter is a cutting edge and heartfelt trainer and facilitator.
Peter has been collaborating with Looby since 2013, and they have run several courses together including Design immersion weeks and 4 year long People Permaculture Facilitator Trainings. They enjoy designing and developing new courses together that bring forth people’s gifts and allow their genius to shine.
Starhawk is the author of The Empowerment Manual: A Guide for Collaborative Groups and 11 other books. She brings forty or more years of experience with horizontal, co-creative organizing, facilitating, and teaching, a lifetime of experiences sometimes wonderful, sometimes horrific! Her special interests are in working across the lines of diversity, and in helping groups learn the communication tools and interpersonal skills to navigate conflict.
Starhawk has co-facilitated with Looby a Social Permaculture course before the International Permaculture Convergence in 2015, with 50 people. They worked together again facilitating the Activating Cultural Emergence course in California in 2018. And this year we are happy to welcome Starhawk to Applewood Permaculture Centre to continue the Cultural Emergence journey.
So honoured and happy to be able to join you in this beautiful and nurturing place
I always enjoy teaching at Applewood. It is a great site, and Looby and Chris are excellent hosts and trainers.
Barbara lives and gardens at Bogata Suma. Barbara has taken the year long People and Permaculture Facilitator's Training with Looby and Peter Cow in 2017. During this training she has completed many designs and is wildly enthusiastic about the Design Web and it's power for bringing direction and manifesting change.
She took her Permaculture Design Course with Rosemary Morrow and has participated in various other permaculture courses and workshops with Mark Shepard, Rakesh Rootsman Rak and others.
All this knowledge she uses in her life, on her homestead and future nut farm Bogata Suma.
For me Applewood is a magical place because of the transformations that happen here. There is an abundance of 'tools' to receive and to learn to apply.
I love to co-facilitate with Looby because she stretches my edges in a gentle way, and she helps me grow - as a teacher and as a person. What more do you wish for in life...
Anne-Marie works on the interface between agriculture and nutrition and is passionate about sustainable solutions for both. She works for international organizations on research, evaluation, design, documentation of nutrition programmes and policy. She is presently designing and implementing research to bring nutrition and sustainable agriculture together.
She completed her Bachelor’s degree in Physiology and Biochemistry in 1981 from University of Southampton, UK and her Masters degree in Nutrition in 1987 from the University of London. In 1992 she carried out a Permaculture Design Course in Devon, UK. In 2004 she completed her PhD in International Nutrition with Soil Science and Epidemiology from Cornell University, USA. She has been working as a Nutritionist since 1987 in a wide variety of roles. During the 1990s she taught Permaculture design in the UK and Czech and Slovak republics.
She has worked for the Universities of London, Bristol, Leeds and Cornell as research assistant or research fellow on Nutrition research. She has worked for Save the Children in Ethiopia and as an international nutrition advisor for Concern Worldwide based in London with a supportive role for Nutrition activities in 4 countries. She has acted as Nutrition Consultant for Action Contre La Faim, Save the Children, Concern Worldwide and World Vision. She as also consulted with the UN Standing Committee on Nutrition and the Food and Agriculture Organisation.
She has carried out quantitative surveys related to the causes and consequences of malnutrition in Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Sri Lanka, Mali and has also developed a special sampling system for nomadic pastoralists. Recent consulting work includes programme and policy analysis related to nutrition and agriculture. She carried out a complex evaluation of Health Systems in Zambia in 2008 as part of a 40 strong team and her role was nutrition, health education and promotion and environmental health aspects. In 2017 she worked with a team of evaluators for FAO on a strategic programme evaluation of Strategic Objective 1 (reduction of hunger and malnutrition). Operational Research projects include nutrition-sensitive Conservation Agriculture in Zambia, Operational Factors in Nutrition-Sensitive Agriculture Programming in Zimbabwe and a policy analysis in Malawi on Nutrition Policy. She has recently carried out case study with the Himalayan Permaculture Centre ‘Exploring, documenting and developing sustainable approaches to improving nutrition in the global south’.
I lived in Birmingham for the first thirty years of my life, working in places which required constant contact with people though training, recruitment, student support, sales and marketing and public relations. I met my partner and moved to my dads hometown of Shrewsbury twenty five years ago after qualifying as a primary teacher in Education, Art and design. I taught at a local school for several years and ran rugby and gardening clubs (not simultaneously!). I really enjoyed the curiosity of young minds and the creativity demanded of me to provide an engaging and safe learning environment.
After having four children I returned to college to study Horticulture so that I could propagate and grow edibles and ornamentals in our mature South facing garden, where the soil is fertile and a wealth of soft fruits and productive apple trees thrive. I enrolled on a year long Garden Design course in London at the end of my Horticultural Studies so that I could further develop the design element of outdoor spaces. I worked as a garden designer for ten years veering towards an organic approach and planted at Chelsea Flower Show with Olivia Kirk to create healing gardens, (three silver-gilts and two golds). In 2015, I found a course which encompassed teaching, horticulture and design. It was a year long Practical Sustainability Course at Shift Bristol lead by Sarah Pugh. The PDC was part of this programme.
I came across Applewood Permaculture Centre; which was closer to my home, in early spring 2017and completed the Training of Teachers course, the year long Facilitators course and the Activating Cultural Emergence Course. I have co facilitated Permaculture courses in Bristol, Cornwall, Shrewsbury and Hereford. I am currently an apprentice of the Diploma in Applied Permaculture and, am now part of the team at Applewood and a member of the Permaculture Association.
For me Applewood has a peace. It feeds me in nature, companionship and spirituality. Applewood provides a care and connection to all who visit. It reaches out and nurtures. The shared food is wholesome and nourishing, the dormitories are comfortable and there are plenty of spaces outside and in for times of contemplation. My favourite place is at the top of the bank. I sit with my back against the fence; where the wild brambles grow, and gaze across the valley to the opposite side where the ravens gather amongst the line of majestic Douglas firs which dominate the skyline.
Collaborating with Looby, Chris and Tomas is a positive enriching experience.There is an authenticity which I appreciate and I feel grounded when working with them and the support they offer. Applewood facilitators encourage collaborative effective experiences: the areas outside and inside provide warmth, light, opportunity and laughter
The Applewood team
We are pleased to have the support and expertise of Emma and Mary as our cooks.
Emma Gorbutt has over 20 years of experience catering for vegetarian, vegan and specialist diets. From her early days working for Fiddleheadz, a French based vegetarian restaurant in Hull, to co-owning and running the Purple Penguin Vegetarian, Vegan and Organic Cafe which toured the UK, she has interspersed this with cooking delicious food at squat cafes, actions and camps. Emma has been vegan for over 24 years and has a wide knowledge of cooking great food for Gluten Free and other dietary restrictions and loves to cook with seasonal and locally grown ingredients. She is also happy to cook with dairy and eggs when needed and is most known for her wide repertoire of cakes and flapjacks!
Emma has recently taken on the additional role of Course Administrator and providing office support for Looby and Chris. She has done a variety of admin, financial and project work since 2001 for organisations such as the Permaculture Association, Scarman Trust, West Devon Borough Council and most recently for Earthworm Housing Co-op.
"I really appreciate my time here cooking at Applewood. Having access to home grown and wild foods right out side the shepherds hut kitchen, listening to bird song and experiencing the peace and tranquillity of cooking, so close to nature, makes my time here truly special. I take great pleasure in creating nourishing and nurturing food to support course participants in their learning and relaxation at Applewood. The connections that are created by sharing food, conversation and laughter last far longer than the meal itself, and I love being part of that experience. I am excited to have broadened my role here at Applewood, to help grow and support the work of Looby and Chris. I love being part of our close knit team and that I get to work in such a beautiful place only 20 minutes up the road from where I live at Earthworm Housing Co-op. I am proud to be a part of Applewood and look forward to meeting the people I book onto the courses held here."
We would also like to think all the amazing, visionary photographers who have come on Applewood courses and whose images we have shared on our website. Thanks to Dana Wilson, Pete McCowen, Kathleen O'Hara and Olly Boon.