Practical details for those attending courses:
Most courses start on a Tuesday or Wednesday evening at 5-5.30. The evening, which runs until around 7.30-8.00 is a time for us to meet, have a shared meal, check in and start to create the space for the course. A key part of this is a shared meal, and there is a ritual intent with this to share each other’s energy through the food we bring. For this reason, it’s great if you can bring some food that you have made yourself and put your consciousness into so as to help start creating the space for the deeper work we will be doing.
The following days (either 2 days or 3 days) start at 9.30, but you are free to arrive anytime from 9.00. I really encourage you to come a little before 9.30 so that you can take some time to walk in the valley and ground yourself. Tea and lunchbreaks happen with the flow of the day, and if you feel a short break is due, do say so!
We generally finish around 5.00, but sometimes we all feel quite saturated earlier and finish 4.00ish. Equally, if we’re on a roll with something, we may go on to 6.00!
Food: There is a cafe at Ruskin Mill is you wish to buy lunch here. This can sometimes (though not often) be a busy place, in which case you might wish to bring your own food to avoid engaging with too many energies when in a more open and sensitised state. There’s a kettle and tea’s at the Apothecary so make yourself at home the rest of the day. Apart from the shared meal, which has something of a ritual quality, I prefer people not to eat in the Apothecary since the smell of food can interfere with the work with herbs later.
What to bring: The Apothecary is a small and very full space, so it’s great if you can bring with you the minimum that you need. This would most likely be drawing pad/notebook and if you have it a shawl and sheepskin are useful for the journeying work. If you like working with colour, do bring oils/watercolours with you – I have pastels and pencils at the Apothecary.
Directions to the Apothecary: The Apothecary can be found easily on Google maps at GL6 0LA. The Apothecary is next to the mill lake adjacent to Ruskin Mill. Parking can be tricky, so if coming for a first time, please leave an extra 30-45min to find somewhere to park and walk up to the Apothecary. If there is space, you can park at Horsely Mill (< 1 km further along the valley from Ruskin Mill) and enjoy the lovely walk back down the valley.
Suggested B&B’s: It is great to be able to stay with people who are familiar with the work we do – two highly recommended places for low cost (£25-35 range) B&B are Stroud Slad Farm and and on Bisley Road with Sara-Lea. An incredible option at a somewhat higher price (around £90) is the Tree House which was brought into to being by Jon who studied the Foundation Year with us several years ago.
Directions to the Slad Farm: Slad Farm is at the postcode GL6 7LE. For most courses there is parking at the farm itself and the courses run in the large white yurt which is on the valley side of the road (as opposed to the higher, woodland side).
Courses including wild camping: It is great if you have a basha and bivvy bag yourself – if not we can very likely lend you one! Otherwise you will need thermals, waterproofs and a sleeping mat. Even in mid summer the weather can require full thermals – utterly unpredictable so you have to be prepared for all conditions!