Who Are We?

poss-painting-bwWe’re a passionate community of festival lovers, environmentalists, activists, campaigners, gardeners, musicians, builders, philosophers, educators, travellers, health workers and artists.

The Green Gathering festival is commissioned by our charity and produced by the charity’s event production company Optimistic Trout Productions, a not-for-profit Community Interest Company (CIC). Any financial surplus from the festival goes to the charity to fund creative environmental and educational projects.

The Green Gathering community is made up of fabulous festival co-ordinators and crew, directors of Optimistic Trout Productions, trustees of The Green Gathering charity, and our inspiring ticket-buying festival-goers without whom the rest would be useless!

Contact us if you’d like to get involved.

 

Optimistic Trout Productions CIC – Directors

muggs-squareSTEVE MUGGERIDGE (aka Muggs)

Steve Muggs has been involved with festivals since the early 80’s, since the days of the Stonehenge Free Festival and the infamous ‘Battle of the Beanfield’. Thereafter, he has been engaged with the transition of some aspects of Free Festival counter-culture into Green movement events, including Maidstone Green Fair (1993–2003) and the Green Gatherings.

On site Muggs heads up the vital “Green Control” crew. He deals with licensing, liaises with authorities, writes long emails very late at night and is a regular speaker at conferences such as  Green Events and Innovations (GEI).

Here’s Muggs being interviewed about festival, traveller and countercultural history since the 1980’s.

em-pic-2EM WEIRDIGAN

After 25 years on the festival circuit, including ten running Weirdigans Cafe, Em became a Green Gathering director in 2013.

Em lived outside St Paul’s Cathedral during the 2011 Occupy encampment; campaigns against extreme energy and corporate takeover of the commons; has been involved with refugee and local solidarity groups in France and Greece; and strives to convince people that expecting interminable growth on a planet with finite resources is silly. Into co-ops, dabbles in veg growing and writing.

Em co-ordinates the GG’s Green Markets, does admin and publicity, and provides the written web content. She recently qualified as an assessor for A Greener Festival.

shane-bio-picSHANE COLLINS

Shane has been part of every Green Gathering since 1994.  A long-time green activist, he has been involved in CoolTan Arts, Reclaim the Streets, anti-roads campaigns and Legalise Cannabis events.

A Green Party candidate in many elections over the last 20 years, in 2015 Shane became a Green Councillor on Mendip Council.

At the GG festival Shane and his crew are responsible for the Speakers’ Forum, bars, recycling and crew food.

As you can see from the pic, he’s a dad too.

lindaLINDA BENFIELD

Linda has been involved with the Green Gatherings for many years, getting stuck into a wide variety of roles, from finance and admin to infrastructure procurement and security.

Linda is always one of the first people on site pre-festival, and is involved in site planning and site management as well as feeding the hungry, hardworking site crew.

As part of Totally Amazing Events she is involved in production work at events across the south of England.

 

The Green Gathering charity – Trustees

The Board of Trustees is made up of volunteers who are committed to delivering on the Green Gathering’s charity objectives. Some of the Trustees have a history of supporting and contributing to the festival and Green Gathering community over a period of years; others bring fresh ideas to the table.

alex-bio-picSUSAN ALEXANDER

Alex spent 20 years working with Gypsy and Traveller communities in the UK, as National Co-ordinator of Friends, Families and Travellers (FFT) and later as Trust Administrator and Senior Grants Officer for the Travellers Aid Trust (TAT). Alex is now a Director of Equus Ferus, a Community Interest Company promoting Equine Facilitated Learning and Natural Horsemanship skills (www.equusferus.org).

 

kerne-spiralsonKERNE RAVEN SPIRALSON

Born 31/10/1993, Kerne joined the GG charity in November 2013 with a view to representing the views and needs of young people in the Green community.

Already a GG festival veteran, having worked in the Kids’ Area and site infrastructure, Kerne brings a unique perspective to the charity and has helped co-ordinate youth activities.

Kerne is a musician, songwriter and rapper.

guyGUY SMITH

Guy has been active in festivals and the Green movement since Stonehenge in the early 80’s.  A former squatter and bus dweller, he now lives in a community in West Wales with his family.

A juggler and singer, Guy also stood as Green Party parliamentary candidate for Llanelli and was instrumental in producing the GG charity’s ‘Sustainable Futures’ event in Carmarthenshire, in 2016.

CHLOE WILSON

A committed and passionate environmental and social justice activist and parent, Chloe has in recent years co-ordinated the Campaigns area at the Green Gathering festival.

MICKEY MURPHY

The newest Trustee, Mickey is keen to take forward the charity’s educational objectives, working with young people towards a sustainable future.

STEVE MUGGERIDGE

Steve Muggs is one of the founders and directors of Optimistic Trout Productions, the trading arm of the GG charity. He is the key liaison between event production and charity trustees.

Additional trustees may be invited to join the Board on the basis of skill-sets / skills required by the charity.

PHOTO CREDITS: Thanks to Stefan Handy, Keef Gibson, Ayesha Jones, Ben Cavanna, Brian Darcy, Zoltan, Johnny Solstice & Cathryn, Mike Urban, AimeeVPhotography, Garry Holden, Mark Pickthall, Greeny Lens, mistereb.com & all who've shared their pics.

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