Barbara Jones will be speaking at the Big Straw Bale Gathering
Speaker Name: Barbara Jones.
Talk Title: Straw Trek – The Next Generation.
Talk description: A journey through time and spaces
Barbara pioneered the idea and inspiration of strawbale natural building in the UK in 1994
and has led the growing movement to improve our built environment and speak out about
the problems and health risks of certain manufactured products and practices that are
widely used today. She is internationally recognised for her work in developing the design of
strawbale buildings using only natural materials, speaks at International conferences, and
has a wide network of colleagues and contacts within her field.
She designed and built the UK’s first Council houses out of straw, the first 2 storey loadbearing strawbale houses, the first terrace of strawbale houses and the first strawbale Hotel. She works closely with self-builders to design affordable homes and mentor them through the build process, and has been involved in over 500 builds. She has also designed several options for cement-free foundations, all of which are approved by UK Building regulations, and are increasingly being used by other architects and engineers. Currently she is designing pre-fabricated straw panel houses for housing developers.
Alongside her passion for building, Barbara is also internationally acclaimed for developing a
unique and empowering way of teaching practical skills on building sites. This method has
resulted in an unheard of number of women learning practical construction skills, proving it
is not the job that puts women off, but the way it’s taught and carried out (in construction
there are at present less than 1% women working ‘on the tools’, but in the School of Natural
Building there are over 60%).
All this has been achieved in novel ways through collaboration, skill sharing and community participation. Most recently she is part of the team that successfully secured the Asset Transfer of a Community College in Todmorden, that she will help to run as a Centre of Natural Building, agro-ecology, and community ventures.
She is the author of Building with Straw Bales, a manual for architects and self-builders, that has been continuously in print since 2002, last revised and updated in 2015.
Child Ticket (Under 16) - Big Straw Bale Gathering
1 Child ticket for The Big Straw Bale Gathering 2018 (Under 16)
Down To Earth - Swansea, UK - 10th, 11th & 12th of August 2018
- Conference talks from leading professionals
- Practical workshops
- Kids entertainment
- Welcome evening event with soft drinks available (Friday 10th from 7pm)
Optional - Add 3 organic meals for £20 (Saturday Lunch, Saturday Eve, Sunday Lunch)
- Camping / Accommodation
- Extra family excursions provided by Down To Earth (coastering, hikes etc)
* Site open 6pm Friday 10th - 5pm Sunday 12th. Camping is available locally for £15-20 per night - A lovely new accommodation block should be finished in time for the BSBG but can't take bookings until it's complete, so stay tuned. Site postcode is SA3 1ED. Down to Earth is offering excursions at an extra price, full details and booking available closer to the event (approx price = £35 half day / £55 full day)
Theme: Sowing the inspiration, Growing the industry & Harvesting the knowledge
SBUK are proud to present the inaugural ‘Big Straw Bale Gathering’ - a gathering to discuss and learn straw bale construction and share the latest and best thinking within the industry.
Held at Down To Earth’s beautiful strawbale roundhouse in South Wales, . The weekend will feature talks, discussions and hands on workshops, for all levels, led by the UK’s best natural builders and leading associated professionals. So come down and get excited about building with straw, learn some new techniques or get stuck into the geeky technical stuff.
When you are full of knowledge you can relax with great local organic food, music, dancing, yoga, ‘Strawbale Ale’, children’s activities and a host of extra curricular events ranging from walks to canyoneering on the beautiful Gower peninsula!
The Big Straw Bale Gathering will collect up everyone with an interest in straw bale building in the UK. No matter what level you are engaging with straw bale construction, there will be lots to learn at the BSBG.
Jeffrey Hart - Events Director - SBUK
StrawBale Building UK - SBUK - is a Community Benefit Society, formed in 2016 with the aim: To promote straw bale building and best practice within the sector.