Radical Bakers 2018 report and thanks

Radical bakers 2018 wasn’t very radical, unless you count learning how to do things for yourself as radical… There were a range of practical skill based workshops. We had sourdough, baking, brewing, fermenting, infusions, ointments, cold remedies, textiles, woodworking, mushrooms, foraging, a team bake-off and loads more…

The event sold out at 120 adult tickets and made a small profit in the first year. The people who came were really relaxed and friendly and when we went to clear up, it took 3 of us about half an hour. The camping field was spotless with no bits of plastic. Most people sorted their own recycling and Stu, who recycles everything for us, said it was a pleasure.

The workshops were well attended and engagement was high. We had a few people drop out at the last minute and their workshops were covered by volunteers who all did a great job. We encourage shared learning with others rather than top-down teaching. There was a hands-on element to most of the workshops.

The Bake-off was on the Sunday and was won by the Community Kids. People got the chance to use heritage organic flours and wood-burning ovens to bake bread and cakes. There were drop-in baking sessions all day Fri and Sat with a dedicated team keeping the ovens going. There were some amazing Sourdough breads and some mouth-watering cakes made.

The food from Shakira and her crew was very good and served with joy. A lot of the fresh stuff was locally sourced and it all tasted amazing. Her crew worked really hard and were totally into delivering good food. They were knowledgeable and friendly. We sold meal tickets and approximately 2/3 of people bought them. This meant that we had about 140 eating including crew.

Issues we had were fairly limited:

    Lots of people came by car and/or wanted campervan places. In order to encourage public transport use next year, we will be making a lift-share page and running a shuttle service from Shrewsbury train station
    Somebody emptied their chemical toilet down the compost loos. 🙁 I have updated the website FAQs and ticket T&Cs and Crabapple have put up signage. Hopefully the damage is limited.

Next year we hope to have more workshops connecting practical skills and action with the wider political environment. We will be improving the fermenting area with some hands-on demos. We will also be expanding the Farming and forestry thread as well as more herbalism. I am inviting people to submit ideas for workshops by email to hello@radicalbakers.org – Our basic offering is a fully catered ticket and up to £50 travel expenses per workshop, but this is negotiable.

Crabapple Community have confirmed the dates for next year. 13-16th June 2019. Crabapple event field is full of mature trees and wildlife, with properly working composting toilets. The residents have been really supportive and people who attended respected their boundaries. Thanks to everyone who came, it was an enabling and energising weekend.

2018 Thanks and acknowledgements

Radical Bakers 2018. What lovely people and atmosphere.

Please brace yourselves for a long gushing post. Things went fairly well from an organising point of view, but what made it was the amazing atmosphere. How chilled and friendly was it? There are so many people to thank, if I forget someone I am sorry.

Thank you to everyone who bought tickets and joined our temporary community. Everyone from Lisa (who bought tickets first, way back in October 17) to Jason and his family who got tickets through the Facebook group from somebody who couldn’t make it. I am really proud to have got such a nice bunch together. Particular thanks to Sandra for helping in the kitchen (we hope to see you on the crew next year), to Erica for stepping in and running a very well-informed discussion on preserving, to Milly for giving a last-minute talk on Permaculture and Henry who taught us a lot about sourdough. Thanks to the well-behaved dogs and responsible owners. What particularly impressed me was the total lack of rubbish. Everyone tidied up after themselves and Stu, who recycles everything, said it was a pleasure. Engagement with the workshops was high and I hope everybody took something away into their daily lives. Please feed back to us what you would like to see in future years. We will be having less camper-vans and caravans next year and encouraging people to come by public transport by running a shuttle service from the train station and by making a lift-share page.

Many thanks to the members of Crabapple Community who have been totally supportive throughout. Thanks to everyone for respecting their boundaries. Crabapple is a special place with a rich history.

Thanks to the hard working and friendly bar staff. Lisa Moomin you are a Star! I totally under-catered the bar (who knew that bakers were also drinkers…?), so next year expect loads more lovely local ales and ciders. The Rhubarb cider from Hereford went down a treat and next year we will be getting more from Barleywood Cider (made by Isy).

Thanks to Tanka, Andy on the gate, Gary and the rest of the site crew for going above and beyond what was asked of them.

Thanks to all the workshop providers! Especially Iain for helping in so many ways, with particular mentions for Stella, Julian and Ed. Thanks to Kerry from Precious Days for providing such lovely activities for the kids. Thanks to Wren for building the cob oven. We cooked pizza in it last night. And not forgetting Scott Rewild from The Rewild Project who gave a brilliant series of brewing and foraging workshops. He will be back next year with the wine we started this year. Cheers Scott! Next year we hope to add some more radical workshops connecting practical action and skills to the wider political environment. We will have more workshops on the Friday as lots of people turned up on Thursday night.

Thanks to Shakira and her Crew in the Cafe. The food was amazing and they worked hard all weekend. The breakfast porridge was the best I have tasted. The meals were delicious, healthy and a lot of the fresh stuff was sourced locally.

Plans are already being hatched for 2019. I am really encouraged by the community of people we gathered.

Much love to everybody, RB Crew

Tickets on sale for next year HERE.