Neil Kingsnorth

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About me

I am a permaculture practitioner and teacher based on a permaculture smallholding in Pembrokeshire, called Patch of the Planet, which I co-run with my partner. At Patch of the Planet we investigate, experiment with and apply ways to live locally and low impact, building a close relationship with our local land and landscape. This includes finding as many ways as possible to harvest needs from local, natural systems and running enterprises on the land. I also run permaculture training and other courses here.

Diploma Tutor Experience

For me, permaculture is a useful, practical tool for designing solutions that work in harmony with the complex and remarkable systems at play on our extraordinary, living planet. I have the certificate in permaculture design, the diploma in applied permaculture and am a permaculture educator. I run a five-acre agroecological smallholding in Pembrokeshire. The project includes permaculture training courses alongside an orchard, agroforestry area, perennial and annual vegetable growing, a tree nursery and a small campsite. We integrate animals in thoughtful, beneficial ways without keeping them for meat, we work very carefully to develop and improve our living soils and we experiment and innovate a lot. Permaculture sits at the heart of all of this. The whole site, and many elements of it, are a consequence of permaculture design. My particular focus and experience is more focused around design with land, food and tree systems and natural systems and ecology

Diploma Tutor Skills

I have huge passion and considerable and growing knowledge about trees, and particularly productive and system trees. I train in orchard skills, have agroforestry, willow coppice, windbreaks and orchard areas on my smallholding and manage my own tree nursery business producing on trees that are carefully selected for climate resilience. I am also part of a project supporting collection and provision of local provenance native trees. I am always happy to talk trees! I have been an environmentalist for decades and have worked a lot in the third sector, including as the Head of Activism at Friends of the Earth, the CEO of The Orchard Project and a campaigner at CND and Global Justice Now (then known as The World Development Movement). I believe in the power of positive human action and I think there are few better phrases to guide a life well-lived than "be the change you wish to see in the world." I also understand and have substantial experience working with community groups and campaigns and in facilitating and training. For several years I ran a permaculture-based garden design business and have built up solid experience around the creative process and the planning and implementation of garden land projects that are designed to work closely in harmony with the natural world. I now run my own smallholding, undertake permaculture-themed courses and work in local resilience projects. These are my passions and areas of specialism and they give you a taste of how I apply permaculture. However the diploma is a varied journey, undertaken by people with a range of interests and I'm interested in supporting people through the process in whatever way they wish to take it. I enjoy the idea of supporting people to maintain momentum, to continue to build their learning and to keep up the motivation and inspiration during their diploma journey.

Educator experience

My focus is largely on land-based work, whether that is large spaces like smallholdings, small spaces like gardens, or community projects. I have a wide breadth of design experience and have designed and implemented community orchards, forest gardens, family gardens, disability accessible spaces, climbing structures and broadscale and detailed designs of larger areas. 

Educator skills

I am particularly interested in integration of trees into landscapes large and small, as well as looking at how trees, and shrubs, can play central roles in building soil and system health.

I have sound knowledge and experience in managing fruit trees and orchards and in tree pruning and grafting and run training on these topics.

I have very broad experience of garden design and the implementation of designs, on budgets small to large. In particular I'm experienced in finding designs that meet the needs of the clients whilst not compromising on either the needs of the natural world or the necessity to use resources lightly.

I have worked with and in community groups for a quarter of a century and ahve trained and designed for them, as well as being involved in and sometimes leading local community campaigns. So I understand how community groups work and very much enjoy working with them.  

Educator qualifications

Diploma in Applied Permaculture (2022)

Certificate in Permaculture Design (2015)

BA Hons, Philsophy