Introduction to permaculture course

Course 1: Sat 9 - Sun 10 February 2019 - FULLY BOOKED
Course 2: Sat 6 - Sun 7 April 2019
Course 3: Sat 7 - Sun 8 September 2019
Course 4: Sat 16 - Sun 17 November 2019

This two-day course runs from 9.30am to 5pm in Stanmer Park, Brighton.

This course introduces the basics of permaculture design. It aims to inspire and empower you to use permaculture design in your everyday life.

What will the Introduction to permaculture course cover?

This course will cover the history, various definitions, design process, ethics, principles, other design tools and case studies from a range of applications.

You will use this theory to co-create a design over the two-day course.

Please note that attending this course does not qualify you to use the term 'permaculture' as part of your work as a professional or with the public, such as being a gardener, a teacher, a designer, giving talks about permaculture, etc. In order to do this you need to go on to complete a permaculture design course such as our Permaculture design course (Building sustainable communities).

Who is the Introduction to permaculture course for?

This course is for people concerned about the state of the world, who want to look at those challenges and create solutions.  It is open to anyone aged 16 or over. No prior knowledge of permaculture is needed.

Learning methods and outcomes

The course will be taught using a variety of methods; group work, games, presentations, discussion, video and slides. We will visit Stanmer Organics project. There will be some linkwork to help you reflect on what you are learning and put it into practice. By the end of the course, you will have a basic knowledge of some of the permaculture ethics and principles and how to apply them. Course participants who complete the entire course will receive a certificate, which will be sent via email after the course.

What does the Introduction to permaculture course lead on to?

This course is an ideal starter for anyone interested in a full permaculture design course. It is now necessary to have completed an Introduction to permaculture design course in order to take Brighton Permaculture Trust's Permaculture design course (Building sustainable communities). You can also go on to explore other specialist courses.

Course tutors

The courses will be led by the following tutors, with assistance from trainee teachers.

9-10 February 2019: Tracy Hind and Hannah Wilde
6-7 April 2019: Stephan Gehrels and Christine Wiltshire
7-8 September 2019: Chloe Anthony and Hannah Wilde
16-17 November 2019: Stephan Gehrels and Chloe Anthony

Chloe Anthony is a permaculture teacher and designer who is passionate about design, forest gardens, community living, sustainable organisations and Transition.

Stephan Gehrels also received his Permaculture Diploma in 2009 and runs school environmental projects in Brighton.

Tracy Hind works freelance in youth and community development and has a long-held belief that community activism is the only thing that really changes anything.

Fran Pickering received her Permaculture Diploma in 2009. Her main areas of interest are local food production, grass root catering, green building, and community building.

Christine Wiltshire is a new permaculture teacher enjoying and learning all aspects of design, with a passion for wildlife, diversity and textiles.

Hannah Wilde is a new permaculture teacher and is particularly interested in the therapeutic benefits of nature and the use of permaculture as a tool for social change.


We usually run one or both days of this course at:

Stanmer Park (near University of Sussex)
South East England

Sometimes we run one or both days of the course at other locations within 15 miles of Brighton.

Get directions to our meeting point in Stanmer Park.

If you intend to book accommodation, please check availability before booking a place, as accommodation in Brighton can be hard to find, especially over the summer months.

Get details on local accommodation and Brighton Permaculture Trust supporters who can provide accommodation in their homes.

Recommended introductory material

The following provide good introductions to permaculture. It is not essential to have covered this material before the course.

These books are recommended, but it is not necessary for those attending to buy or read them.


Fees include tuition, refreshments, handouts and information sheets.

  • £247.50 - Sponsored/organisation rate
  • £247.50 - Individual income more than 25k/yr
  • £200 - Individual income 18-25k/yr
  • £152.50 - Individual income less than 18k/yr
  • £52.50 - Individual, concessionary rate (check eligibility)*

* Concessionary places are limited. If places are not available check back two weeks before the course/event as more may be available then.

We endeavour to make our courses and events affordable to all. Unfortunately, we do not receive any external funding for most of these and rely on large amounts of voluntary input.

See the cancellations and refunds policy.

Booking the Introduction to permaculture course

Booking is essential, as most of our courses/events are fully booked weeks in advance. However, if places are still available, then bookings can be made until midday the day before the course/event. A place is not secured until we have received the requested payment.

Please do not book unless you are able to pay for your place.

Paying for your place

Please read this section carefully.

When you complete the booking process, you will receive a confirmation email from us. If you haven't received that email within the next few hours, please contact us immediately, as this email contains vital information regarding your booking.

You can pay when you book your place using a credit/debit card or PayPal, or you can tick the 'Pay later' box (in the Event Fee section), which gives you the option to pay by BACS or send us a cheque after you have booked. If you choose to pay later, you will have 7 days to pay for your place. Bookings that remain unpaid on our system for longer than that will expire. You will receive notification of this expiration by email. If you then decide you want to come, you will need to contact us to see if there is a still a place available for you.

If you are booking within two weeks of the course, or the course is nearly full, you will not have the option to pay later. Instead, you will need to pay immediately at the point of booking using a credit card or PayPal.

Be certain that you understand ALL the information on this page, then:


9-10 February 2019 course - FULLY BOOKED


Book the 6-7 April 2019 course


Book the 7-8 September 2019 course


Book the 16-17 November 2019 course

  • Beatrice
    "I'm still full of joy - you brought so much meaning in my current professional conversion - from designing softwares.... to communities. Looking forward to the next course!"

    Beatrice Lajous

  • Helen
    "I enjoyed the group work and varied spaces - Earthship and Plot. I really enjoyed the lunches with contributions from everyone. "


  • Edward
    "The delivery of the course content was very natural and often took the form of a discussion between the tutors. The course felt very collaborative in that respect."


  • Hannah
    "All of the tutors were amazing. They had a very personable manner about them and were great at listening to what everyone said and valuing it. They created a space in which anyone could say what they wanted to."


  • Maria
    "I enjoyed the exercises, the way the trainer encouraged people to get involved, the mixture of theory and practice, etc. Being a trainer myself, I can fully appreciate the high standard applied both in the design of the course and the delivery."

    Maria Esperanza Sanchez

  • Sinead
    "My interest and study of permaculture over the last year or so has been an autodidactic solitary endeavour. So it was lovely to attend a course and meet people who not only actually knew what permaculture was :) but also were just as eager and interested."


  • Nathan
    "This is a great course, fully supported by the tutors ... the potential is almost overwhelming, the sense of inclusion that comes from them and the trust helps ground you in its principles which allows you to learn and think about its application."


  • Gill
    "Very helpful to attend a class - information stuck much better than home reading on its own.... Good to be amongst doers, not just talkers."


  • Rebecca
    "Really enjoyed this course, strongly focused on Permaculture principles, superbly structured, well delivered supported progressive learning. Thank you."

    Rebecca Landau-Wildy

  • Kristina
    "I found the course very powerful.... I came out of the course feeling empowered and motivated to apply permaculture principles to all aspects of my life and learn more."


  • Mark
    "The course was what I hoped it to be - a design course - so not too airy, and specific and directed enough to be useful and practical ... I thought for an introduction course it was perfect."

    Mark Seiltz

  • Richard
    "A fantastic two days that I would recommend to anyone."

    Richard Millar

  • Roy
    "The tutors were very approachable, knowledgeable & enthusiastic. They allowed us to make our own minds up, rather than forcing their opinions on us. The tutor:student ratio gave us the chance to get to know each other, contribute and network."

    Roy Hill

  • Millar
    "The teachers and the delivery and the content was just right for first timers to feel permaculture can be for them."


  • Anna
    "Been seeing every aspect of life differently since."


  • Saray
    "It was an amazing experience and hoping to go back soon. The venue is great, and teachers are awesome. Can't wait for more."


  • Ville
    "Even if you can get the information covered on the course from books, you can't buy enough books with the course fees to get access to the range of practical expertise the course teachers have, or the valuable second opinions from other course participants."

    Ville Koskinen

  • Ann
    "I liked the fact that the course covered some elements of allowing us to look, discover, and learn for ourselves."


  • Phil
    "All in all a great weekend, learning a great subject which, thanks to the enthusiasm of the team, has left me hungry to learn more and more importantly put it into practice and pass the lessons learned onto my family."

    Phil O'Donoghue

  • Richard
    "I came away feeling inspired, wanting to know more, wanting to get involved, pondering much on the importance of a relationship with the land and also with community, and generally struck with the profound beauty of our ancient, staggeringly diverse home."

    Richard Basgallop

  • Catherine
    "Really well taught, structured and thought through. Amazing to be brought from knowing very little to having a go at your own design in two days."


  • Ozichi
    "Brighton Permaculture Trust is a revolutionary organisation for the times that we are we in. I can see the change and impact of what I am learning transforming my way of living."

    Ozichi Brewster

  • Nick
    "The course left me feeling really positive. The problems of climate change, peak oil, and our all-consuming culture often leave us feeling overwhelmed and hopeless. This course showed practical steps can be taken, which gave hope."


  • Kate
    "I thought the site was beautiful. I loved spending a lot of time outside.... A really lovely group of people, relaxed atmosphere, delicious lunches and an inspiring course."

    Kate Lewis

  • David
    "I liked the holistic approach, so practical-based activities like surveying and observations following all the principles of permaculture - it was a delight."

    David Kemp

  • Michele
    "Many thanks for presenting such a huge topic in bite sized, easily digestible pieces."

    Michele Woods

  • Christoper
    "It was a great course and brilliant to meet other like-minded people who share the same or similar interests... Every day it is making me think differently how I approach daily tasks.... I am already enjoying making it part of my everyday and can't say enough good things about the course :)."

    Christopher Lusty

  • Polly
    "All trainers showed great knowledge and passion. I am now much more aware of the ethics and principles in permaculture and hope to do the design course soon. The pot luck lunch was amazing."

    Polly Charlton

  • Liane
    "The course tutors were excellent. They were personable, knowledgeable and fun. I felt that for an introductory course it gave complete information and tools to go off and make a start on developing a permaculture design."

    Liane Webb

  • Eva
    "Trainers set a very relaxed pace, helped us all to slow down and think. Despite (or because of?) this, we covered a lot in two days."


  • Helen
    "I thought the teaching was very well done, and thoroughly planned out. They allowed plenty of room for breaks and discussion, and there was a good effort to get everyone mingling and talking with each other."

    Helen Jack

  • Megan
    "Made to feel welcome from the start, really great warm up and ice breakers. Relaxed atmosphere made for enjoyable learning. Interesting and knowledgable tutors."

    Megan Whale

  • Anon
    "The course culture and the set-up was for me invaluable to creating a solid platform for learning as and with a group."
  • Erin
    "Such a great opportunity to meet people from all walks of life with many opportunities for further study and involvement. Thank you for being passionate about what you do and for sharing your knowledge and experience."


Contact us

For further information or if you have problems with your booking, please contact us.