The annual London Permaculture Festival is a one day grassroots event that attracts around 700 people who come to learn about how the ethical design science of permaculture can offer sustainable, regenerative green solutions to different areas of modern life. Each year we host 20-plus workshops, delivered by experts in their field. These broadly cover, as illustrated by his Permaculture Design System Flower, what permaculture co-originator David Holmgren has identified as, ‘the key domains that require transformation to create a sustainable culture.’

This years workshops include:


How to grow LOTS of herbs and microgreens in a very small space

Mark Ridsdill Smith

You can grow enough herbs and microgreens in a very small space to transform most of your meals with fresh, delicious, and nutritious home grown ingredients. Mark will give you tips on how to grow them successfully, sustainably and at low cost – as well ideas on which are the easiest to grow, the most delicious and the most nutritious. No previous growing experience needed – anyone can grow these successfully! This workshop will cover:

  • How and where to source the large volumes of seeds needed at low cost.
  • How to recycle your growing media and use again – even if you don’t have space for traditional composting.
  • How to grow a LOT of microgreens and herbs in a tiny space.
  • Ways to transform your kitchen waste into fertiliser for your growing.
  • What are the best microgreens for flavour and health?
  • How to keep supermarket herb plants happy and productive for months, even for years!

Mark is founder of Vertical Veg that inspires and supports food growing in small spaces. He has been growing and running workshops and the Vertical Veg website for over eight years. He is passionate about how growing in the city can change our relationship with food, nature and the community in which we live – as well as giving us more delicious food to eat!

Forest gardening

Bryn Thomas

Change Your World with Permaculture


You’re here because you want to make a positive difference in the world – the tricky bit is deciding what best to do. Informed by nature’s secrets of success, permaculture helps us make better choices, feel more secure and connect up with like-minded people. Aranya, author of ‘Permaculture Design – a step by step guide‘, will share his latest thoughts on how.

Design for Action

Graham Burnett

This workshop will guide you through how to go about reframing your design challenges as positive opportunities for active community transformation in our neighourhoods.

Urban Permaculture – introduction to designing edible ecosystems in the city

Susannah Hall & Kayode Olafimihan

This session will explain how to design ecosystems in the city drawing on our experience of designing and implementing over 60 permablitzes for Permablitz London (featured recently on BBC Gardener’s World) in a wide range of gardens across London over the past 5 years.

Permablitz London was initiated in July 2013 as a social experiment in reciprocal edible garden makeovers. We typically hold free one day permablitzes that create or develop a community or household edible, wildlife-friendly garden, based on permaculture designs. Once you have helped at three you can have one yourself.

Kayode Olafimihan founded Permablitz London and designed the award-winning permaculture LAND project at Cecil Sharp House. He is chair of the London Permaculture Network and coordinates the annual London Permaculture Festival.

Susannah Hall is head gardener at Cecil Sharp House permaculture LAND project and for several private gardens. She is a permaculture designer and offers training in permaculture design and gardening.

Permaculture in conflict zones: a new paradigm for peaceful solutions that offers active hope.

Amber Badyari

Come and learn about the work of the Green Kashmir Permaculture Trust who have introduced permaculture into the conflict zone of Kashmir in Northern India. Our mission is to find peaceful solutions to the on-going challenges faced by embattled communities and conflict-degraded environments by bringing renewed hope through the life affirming methodology and systems of the now flourishing global movement of permaculture.

Amber, co-founder or the project, will present an overview of the Trust’s objectives and their outcomes, with a preview of our hopes and plans for the future. The session will conclude with a Q and A session. &

Living medicine: Self care with food and herbs

Gail Farrow

Discover how to use food and herbs safely to boost your health and treat everyday ailments for yourself and your family. Home remedies are a pleasure to make and use – knowing how is the key! This wonderful workshop will help you understand the healing properties of plants and food:

  • how to make a simple breakfast and lunch to balance your sugar levels for consistent energy through the day, instead of the highs and lows we so often experience
  • how plants work to support the body and mind to boost our immunity and maintain health and wellbeing

Plus you’ll receive a handout of the principles and therapeutics of food and plants as medicine, tea-making and breakfast remedies

Emergent Dynamic Governance Ecosystems

Andy Goldring

Andy Goldring is Chief Executive of the Permaculture Association and one of the people behind the development of the Permaculture CoLab.

How to build a Bamboo Bike

James Marr
Hear from James Marr about how to construct a bamboo bicycle. James is a founder of the Bamboo Bicycle Club, an established London based workshop, which enables people to design and build bespoke bamboo bicycles.

The Bamboo Bicycle Club London helps people who are passionate about cycling to build and ride their own self-build bicycles from our workshop. We provide you with everything you need to get creative and learn to build your own unique bamboo bike from scratch. Our bamboo bike builder’s club was founded by James and Ian, two bike riding engineers, who after their own enthusiastic experiments in building bamboo bikes, decided to create a bicycling community with others who are interested in building their own beautiful, robust and environmentally friendlier bamboo bicycle frames.

Zen in the Art of Permaculture Design

Stefan Geyer

Everyone is looking for answers. Permaculture is not only brimming over with answers, but also offers far reaching, sustainable solutions to many of our modern day ills.

Stefan will talk about his book, Zen in the Art of Permaculture Design, described as a little book of quiet lightning and gentle earthquakes, infused with insights from the Zen tradition, that presents Permaculture Design as a modern method of great liberation – a gateway and catalyst enabling a shift in perception that can change everything.

Talk on new book Nature Journal with Cyanotype Workshop

Zoë Burt

Zoë, one of the artists and authors of Nature Journal, will deliver a talk on her co-authored new book Nature Journal followed by a cyanotype workshop inviting participants to make unique blueprint bookmarks in the garden at Cecil Sharp House. Open to all ages.

Nature Journal is a book filled with creative projects to connect with nature throughout the seasons. Step-by-step techniques in how to make botanical inks, natural dye recipes, lumen photography, blueprinting and other processes. Featuring space for sketches and field notes to make the journal your own.

Zoë collaborated with Permablitzlondon on a dye garden at Morley College, London where she teaches creative workshops. Nature Journal is available as part of the curated offer for the Fashioned from Nature exhibit at V&A. She has exhibited her textile works in the UK and Germany, and has works in a number of collections, including the Embroiderers Guild.

Composting for City Gardeners

Sue Amos

An introduction to the whys and wherefores of good composting. How to do it, and what you’ll need. You’ll leave knowing enough to manage your own heap, bin, bokashi bins, and much more.

Sue Amos has been gardening in London for 25 years on a wide range of gardens, community gardens allotments and other projects.

The gift economy: what’s it worth?

Ros Bedlow

An oak tree doesn’t charge a squirrel for acorns. We wouldn’t expect payment from a close friend or relative for a meal or a lift into town. In ecosystems, and in families and closely knit communities, the gift economy flourishes. Are there ways in which we can encourage wider ‘gifting’? What might be the benefits? And the challenges? And how does this fit in with permaculture?

Ros Bedlow is a teacher and facilitator, and co-founder of Transition Leytonstone. She has a particular interest in applying permaculture ethics and principles to people and communities, and a few years ago helped to co-create an Introduction to Permaculture for Transition Towns. She has recently started offering courses on the gift economy and is exploring ways to create a wider gifting network.

Positive Solutions Around the World

Nicola Peel

Nicola Peel is an award winning environmentalist, filmmaker, speaker and solutionist. Nicola has been working in the Ecuadorian Amazon for 18 years on a number of environmental and social projects. Finding solutions to oils spills with fungi, building rainwater systems for indigenous people suffering from contamination due to the oil industry, training farmers in agroforestry to prevent the slash and burn of tropical rainforests and cleaning the beaches of tons of plastic, turning rubbish into a resource.

Aside from Nicolas practical work on the ground, she also inspires us to look for solutions in the intelligence of Nature, through the science of Biomimicry. Nature is our greatest teacher. Biomimicry is an approach to innovation that seeks sustainable solutions to human challenges by emulating nature’s time-tested patterns and strategies.

Introduction to Permaculture

Randy Mayers

During his presentation Randy will cover the basics of Permaculture: the building blocks for conscious design and living in harmony with the planet, and all its’ inhabitants. He will touch on ethical and ecological principles, some design tools and some ways to get started on your very own Permaculture journey.

Randy first came across Permaculture in 2008. He found the subject full of common sense ideas that immediately inspired him to apply the principles in his own life. After completing the 72 hour Design Course in 2010, he went on to help design and implement land-base Permaculture projects. He also co-founded the May Project Gardens in south London, a community garden scheme dedicated to bringing low impact and sustainable living to an urban audience. Eager to spread the knowledge and experiences he had gained, he then participated in a week-long Training of Teachers course facilitated by some of the Permaculture Associations’ finest tutors. Randy is currently on the path to obtaining his Diploma in Applied Permaculture Design under the mentorship of Aranya, Permaculture teacher and author of Permaculture Design: A step by step guide. He has been a resident at Landmatters Co-operative Permaculture Project since November 2014 where he is currently involved in developing the community food gardens whilst setting up educational programmes in Permaculture and sustainable living.

Natural Beekeeping

Heidi Herrmann & Rachel Hanney

Introduction to Permaculture Principles

Chloe Anthony

Come and be introduced to the twelve Permaculture Principles.

Chloe Anthony is a permaculture tutor and practitioner, working with Brighton Permaculture Trust, offering introduction courses in Mid-Sussex and a diploma tutor, Chloe lives in Sussex on a smallholding and is passionate about design, edible and forest gardens, building community and sustainable organisations.


Introduction to Permaculture

Nat Mady

Nat will give an overview of permaculture, its key design tools and some practical applications. The workshop will be lively and thought-provoking and should give you plenty of ideas for your garden, your balcony or even your lifestyle!

Nat is co-director of Cordwainers Grow, a Hackney based social enterprise that focuses on environmental education by bringing people together through creative learning experiences. She is also founder of Hackney Herbal and is part of Permablitz London. She has an MSc in Environment and Sustainable Development from UCL where her research focused on Agroecology and resilience in farming systems in Central America.

Urban Hens – Keeping Chickens in London

Jenny Bettenson

Come and meet the hens from Spitalfields City Farm and find out how to look after our feathered friends in the city. This will be a beginners guide.

Jenny has been the Farmyard Coordinator at Spitalfields City Farm for 6 years and has a wealth of knowledge and experience relating to animals. She holds a BSc (hons) in Animal Science and has a passion for preserving the Rare Breed Farm Animals.

Sociocracy – the age of consent

Les Moore

Sociocracy is a whole system approach to governance, inclusive decision making, and the ongoing evaluation and improvement of an organisation or project. Sociocracy seeks excellence through continual improvement and decisions based on consent and not the will of the majority. There is an ongoing process focused on defining aims and measuring results. There is a learning curve but individuals and  groups can catch on quickly. This workshop will explore the connections between Permaculture and Sociocracy together with a gentle introduction to its guiding principles.

Building with Straw Bales

Mary Rawlinson

This talk will introduce you to building with straw bales, describing the building methods, the advantages of using straw and how this method of building could provide affordable houses for the future. Finally, there will be an invitation to get involved and learn through the School of Natural Building.


What's happening outside at the festival
New to Permaculture - find out more at the Festival
Stalls market