ABOUT THE PROJECT
An Important Project.
A Unique Eco-Community
The land was purchased in 2013 by the founder, Robin, fast-forward 7 years and he finally crossed paths with Natasha & Ky, who are now turning this collective vision of conservation and community into a reality.
We very much believe that the Earth is not ours - it is a shared space for all life to exist that should be treated with respect and kindness. We understand that we have an important role to play in the ecosystem, so our goal is to act as guardians that over our lifespans, will caretake this beautiful piece of land and commit to improving it for all.
At this site - now known as Paradise Valley, it has only been around 100 years since humans were one of hundreds of species this area of land supported. Humans living in nature is natural and how we are ‘supposed’ to live this being said, it is of great importance to the conservation and to us, that we tread lightly through our re-integration, respect and allow for the needs of all plants and animals present here, adapting our plans as necessary to ensure that our impact on all beings on this planet, for now and always, is positive and beneficial.
Paradise Valley is set in the rolling hills of beautiful Herefordshire, in an idyllic location providing everything anyone could need. With woodlands, meadows, a brook and multiple springs, there really is everything needed to be able to provide beautiful, abundant habitats for animals, plants and humans alike...it truly is Paradise!
We are at the beginning stages of our project, this means limited facilities, finances and very basic accommodations whilst working on site. We have a compost toilet, a couple of sheds, some make-do shelter and a few wagons. That’s it. We love keeping it simple but to make this an achievable, sustainable endeavour something a little more substantial is required. To do this requires residential planning permission and a couple more people who are kind, willing and wanting to be a part of this incredible project and who are ready to live a humble off-grid life.
The woodland is11 acres in total, it provides incredible and diverse habitats for wildlife and still allows us to sustainably harvest resources through coppicing and other sustainable regenerative woodland management techniques.
The woodland is made up of broadleaf and conifer plantation on ancient woodland sites (PAWS) with some smatterings of semi-natural ancient woodland and small areas of plantation. We mean to conserve wildlife, promote and increase biodiversity and sustainably utilise the natural materials for building, charcoaling, crafts and firewood in accordance with our woodland management plan approved by the forestry commission.
The Meadows are 11 acres in total, covering the rolling hills, a marsh and the flat dry land along the winding Sapey Brook. The meadows bloom with wild flowers in spring and are plentiful in wild herbs, grasses and edible plants throughout the year. The hills and smaller woodland areas break up the land, forming pockets of tranquility and privacy, so you feel like you are being hugged by nature. The soil is rich in clay so provides a fantastic resource for when we begin to build in cob. The clay can also make things a little more challenging, slipping in the mud in autumn and winter is inevitable, and this lack of drainage isn’t ideal for growing vegetables. However over the last year or so, the many varieties of seeds we have sown have grown and have done so in abundance. We have been using veganic and permaculture principles to our advantage and we have had no problems at all. Nature is amazing… especially when you pay attention!
Planning Permission & Where We're At
We are right at the beginning!
In order to make this project sustainable we need a team of at least 4 people to live here permanently.
We are in the process of applying for temporary residential planning permission for 4 units. This will give us 3-5 years to prove that what we are doing is achievable and viable.
Natasha and Ky have been working on the land since March 2020 managing the woodland, growing organic food using vegan permaculture principles and finding out what it will truly require to live and work here in this “peace” of Paradise. Lot’s of progress has been made, yet there is still an endless list of things to do and extra hands are required to get this project truly in motion.
To conserve wildlife, restore the ancient woodlands, give back to the planet and to create a sustainable completely vegan, off-grid and substance free eco-community.
OUR CORE PRINCIPLES
Vegan | Substance-Free | Self-Sufficient | Addiction-Free
Veganism is not only scientifically proven to be a healthier choice for strong and vibrant bodies, but it's healthier for our planet too as animal agriculture is the leading cause of species extinction, ocean depletion, water pollution and habitat destruction. And, of course, the most compassionate approach is to live in harmony with animals and all beings so refraining from abusing, eating, enslaving and imprisoning them, to us, is the obvious choice.
So when talking about sustainability and a future for humankind and all beings on the planet, veganism is an obvious necessity.
As a community, we want to support each other to behave mindfully and with kindness. Substance use often leads to people behaving out of character and can easily lead to ignoring one's own integrity. Alcohol, tobacco and other substances often carry a high carbon footprint and can negatively impact others so our community actively encourages finding more sustainable, healthier ways to cope with difficulties, enjoy ourselves and celebrate life.
Self-sufficiency simply means that, as a community, we provide for our own needs as far as is achievable. This gives us control over our lives, self-satisfaction and allows us to ensure that we do things in a compassionate and sustainable way without supporting unkind, unsustainable and unethical practices.
By avoiding reliance on external, uncertain entities, we can be truly sustainable and share our abundances generously with others out of choice and freedom.
Self-sufficiency is all about being able to support ourselves in healthy ways without being reliant on external things that are temporary and unsustainable. Addictions are unhealthy, harmful and often lead to unkind, thoughtless behaviour choices. We support evolution, adaptation and growth and we encourage everyone to be resilient and independent so that they can make a meaningful contribution out of choice rather than out of fear or dependency.
We believe that living and embodying these principles enables us to peacefully co-exist with all beings, with greater awareness of our impact on this world. We believe that living compassionately and aligned with nature gives us the best opportunity to be truly fulfilled and allows us to grow and evolve into better people causing greater benefit to the world.
If this speaks to you...please get in touch and see how you can get involved today.
THE PARADISE VALLEY GUARDIANS
Founder & Vocational Project Worker
“I bought Paradise Valley in 2013, expressly with the intention of founding an ecological community here. I formed the Living Land Trust to own the land so that it is available to vegan, off-grid, self-sufficient, addiction-free community in perpetuity. I am 70, in partnership, have two children, one highly disabled. I have experience as a communard of Atlantis Commune, as a graduate of the Humaniversity Therapist Training, as a facilitator of Scott Peck Community Building, a Thai Chi instructor, and all the rest…
I welcome to our community all interested souls seeking a healthy, grounded, creative and loving lifestyle. This, for me, is a school for ascending souls! Welcome... ”
Full Time Valley Guardian & Project Worker
“Three years ago, I woke up to the pain of this world. I pulled apart my life and, from that point, I committed to causing as much overall goodness and benefit to all life on this planet as much as I could achieve. I found out pretty quick that our civilisation’s current way of living makes that goal... well... pretty unachievable to say the least! So, having zero experience...or skill, I converted a van into my home with hopes to find somewhere rural to reside, learn to grow food and give back to our planet.
Fast-forward one year and whilst the world has been in chaos, I’ve been blessed with the opportunity to fulfil what I set out to do... with planning permission as the only hurdle! At Paradise Valley, I can fulfil my goal more and more each day. Having tried and tested this close-to-nature, simple life, it really hits home as to how important and necessary this way of life is - if we as a species are to have a future at all!"
Full Time Valley Guardian & Project Worker
I joined this project in early 2020 and feel humbled to play a part in creating a community at Paradise Valley.
I believe that our world is at crisis point with climate change, materialism and unsustainable systems and I want to help create an alternative, more sustainable way of living - a way that is in harmony with nature and healthy for our bodies, minds and souls.
I come from a background of health and fitness, education and horticulture and I enjoy music, yoga, spiritual philosophy and heritage crafts.
I'm always up for a peppermint tea and an ontological discussion and I am keen to contribute everything I can to making this world a kinder, more sustainable place for the generations to come."
Volunteer Valley Guardian
When I saw Paradise Valley and heard of the vision for the land, I vowed to support this endeavours. I have been a committed vegan for 10 years now. I give moral support and food to fortify the 'workers' as well as help to further crop-growing and general activities to enable the ultimate vision. I am very excited and encouraged to see the progress that has been made in the last year or so towards this aim.