Brighton Bricks

Encouraging Learning Through Play

Social Landscapes - Permaculture Design Course

April 9th 2016 to July 24th 2016, 7 weekends + 2 optional Design Clinics and 2 optional Permablitzes (practical Permaculture days) linked to the curriculum of the course.

The Permaculture Design Course is a 72-hour inspiring and often life-changing course, 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.

Dates and Venues
The course will be held on the following days:


April 9th & 10th
Design & PrinciplesTreadwell

April 23rd & 24th
Soil & Food SystemsSutton Community Farm & Treadwell

May 8th
Optional Design Clinic Treadwell

May 14th & 15th
Self & CommunityThe Quadrangle Trust, Kent (residential) – tbc

May 28th & 29th
Water & TreesTreadwell

June 11th
Optional Permablitz - tbc

June 18th & 19th
Shelter & EnergyTreadwell & other – tbc

July 2nd
Optional Design Clinic Treadwell

July 9th & 10th
Livelihood & Transition Treadwell & Brixton Remakery

July 23rd & 24th
Presentations & Celebration Treadwell

September 3rd
Optional Permablitz – Reunion Treadwell Close

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.

The main venue is Treadwell (SW2 3TL), a semi-detached home in Streatham Hill that is being transformed into a living example for urban Permaculture Design. This location will allow us to design and explore real and practical solutions for our everyday lives in an urban environment, including small space food growing, community and human scale water and energy systems.

We will also visit different venues in South London on various days of the course. These will include the Brixton Remakery, the community orchard and allotment in Hillside Gardens ParkThe Quadrangle Trust in Kent, the CSA project Sutton Community Farm and more (tbc)…

We will spend one weekend at the Quadrangle Trust exploring health and wellbeing, community building, deep ecology and connection to the natural world. The Quadrangle Trust is an inspiring 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.

Lead tutor will be Michel Thill.

Michel has lived in a number of places around the world including at eco-villages and a Permaculture Education Centre in Asia. Such experiences allowed him to explore the relationship between inner and outer resilience, personal transformation as well as the creation of community and environmental sustainability. He now lives and works in London where he teaches Permaculture Design and runs various community and food growing projects. It is Michel’s vision to create an urban example of a regenerative and restorative, life sustaining and flourishing culture, connecting people to each other and the more than human. Inspired by Permaculture principles and the Ecovillage Design Education, he is currently developing a social enterprise project which seeks to create such micro-cultures within London through reinventing our neighbourhoods.

Co-facilitator will be Tish Vail who has been working as an interior designer for many year and is integrating her professional design experience and spiritual practice with permaculture design.

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; Ros Bedlow, co-founder of Transition Leytonstone, pioneering the recent Permaculture for Transition courses, Hanna Lewis, co-founder and director of the Brixton Remakery.

What the course will cover

Much of the 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 learning, building community, organising people, setting up businesses – all of that inspired by the example of the natural world. The day topics above a guideline and not all there is.

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

• Ethics and principles of Permaculture
• Design process and methodology
• Soil structure, ecology and land regeneration
• Trees and woodland management
• Cultivated ecology: gardens and farms
• 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 stuff like building a worm compost, a haybox cooker or using clay as a building material. There will be plenty of design time for each participant’s personal design and for a bigger group design, both of which will be presented on the last two days of the course. During these design sessions you will have the opportunity to integrate the things you learn during the course and you will have support from the tutors. There are optional design clinics and practical permaculture days planned. We will let you know about various useful resources and share those on an online learning platform encouraging you to build action learning groups with other course participants to support each other through learning, sharing, trying out and reflecting.

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

“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

“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

Registration and Price

For more information and to register contact Mich – 07901036220 – The course is offered on a sliding scale according to income to make it affordable of everyone. Payment by instalments is also possible. Early bird rates if paid in full before January 15th 2016.

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 and 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.

Please click here to see our Cancellation & Refund Policy.