Permaculture Projects

Return of the Surplus

Keveral Farm

It was little more than five years ago today that my best friend Laura and I sold up and gave away the majority of our world belongings and began our permaculture journey in earnest. After several months of deep listening and practice with Australian and Southern English practitioners we decided we needed to emerge ourselves a little more. Our first stop was Keveral Farm, an organic farming community near Looe in Cornwall. We were lucky enough to be taken on as volunteers during a Permaculture Design Certificate. Some of the teachers we had known from earlier forays though many were new to us.

As the Earth continues to turn and we ourselves are now entering a period of relative abundance through the application of permaculture principles and inspired methodologies, the things we learned and experienced in our few brief weeks at Keveral have stayed with us long after this experience. In accordance with the third ethic of permaculture, Fair Share or Return of Surplus we just wanted to share some of the things we love about Keveral.

Keveral’s vision states their intent clearly:

Keveral enables thriving, intentional community for people and other beings living and visiting here now and into the future for 7 generations. We value ecological living and personal growth. We provide co-operatively managed housing and access to land managed regeneratively. We provide opportunities for personal enterprises. Our aim is to be a living inspiration through education and outreach.

We’ve found their vision statement to be resoundingly true to form. Particularly their last sentence. Though their approach to education is far from what most may conjure up upon reading the word. Keveral’s mode of education is a true ‘leading by example’.  With members of staff on their PDCs and community members including the magical mycelium’ed man Bill Knight; with antics as entertaining and insightful as his mushroom production. The calm, ever humble and wise beyond her years, Klaudia Van Gool, who was the first to introduce us to; The Work That Reconnects, and spark an ongoing love of Social/People Permaculture. And the bordering on mythological presence of Oak Johnson. A man whom struck us with such an inspiring presence we felt in good stead to apply his name to our own son.

Oak Johnson
Photograph of Oak Johnson. Photograph provided by author, taken from Keveral Facebook Page.

Our days were spent helping prepare fresh delicious food in the kitchen, sitting in on revelatory lessons, being inspired by the connection and community of Keveral, meandering through the extensive orchards and woodlands and winding our way down to the sea for swims and general joviality. We remember this time fondly and are forever grateful for Keveral’s existence.

Keveral Sunset
Sunset over Keveral.
Photograph provided by author, taken from Keveral Facebook Page.


Keveral Farm is one of the oldest organic farms in the UK. The original community was established in 1973 and is owned and managed cooperatively. Keveral offers courses, camping and welcomes visitors. We, of course, highly recommend a trip, a course, a visit to this special place.

Keveral Dawn
Sunrise over Keveral.
Photograph provided by author, taken from Keveral Facebook Page



  1. im not sure how to contact geoff but i have two children i am homeschooling and i cant think of a better way to educate them than to do it thruogh geoff and permiculture. so i thought, “well bills idea and geoffs idea is education so why not start with the children they will take permiculture as unarguable fact. so can you please guide me in providing a permiculture program for my kids, ages 13 and 16. if someone spots this and can tell geoff please pass my message on. my email is

  2. Thank you Fionn and Laura for those kind words.
    Pleased to know that we helped inspire you to do the great work you are now doing in Australia.
    Btw, the photo of me is half a lifetime ago !

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