who are we?

The UK's original off-grid, grassroots festival, The Green Gathering is a showcase of low-impact living filled with music, arts, activism, spoken word, crafts and so much more. Four days of exploration, imagination and self-discovery, combined with unforgettable acts and opportunities to learn life-long skills.

Behind the scenes we’re a passionate bunch of festival-lovers, environmentalists, activists, campaigners, gardeners, musicians, builders, philosophers, educators, travellers, health workers and artists.

A not for profit event, the festival is commissioned by our charity and produced by Optimistic Trout Productions CIC, a Community Interest Company. Any financial surplus from the festival goes to fund creative environmental and educational projects.

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

Contact us if you’d like to get involved.


Steve 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, keeping a calm eye on everything that happens across the festival. 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). Muggs is also a trustee of The Green Gathering charity.

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

Em Weirdigan

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

Em manages the GG’s Green Markets, writes the monthly newsletter, keeps internal comms flowing, co-ordinates publicity, and is passionate about sustainability topping the agenda. She qualified as an assessor for A Greener Festival in 2017, curated the Solution Zone at Extinction Rebellion’s Spring Uprising in 2019, and was interviewed for Festival Vision’s Green Leader Q&A in 2021.

Em has worked with refugee solidarity groups in France and Greece; strives to convince people that expecting interminable growth on a planet with finite resources is silly; counts campfires and dancing amongst her favourite things.

Shane Collins

Shane has been involved in every Green Gathering since 1994. Nowadays at the festival Shane and his crew are responsible for the Speakers’ Forum and Greensweep recycling.

In 2023 Shane went part-time as a GG director.

Shane is a Green Councillor on Somerset Council and as a long-time green activist, has been involved in Reclaim the Streets, Legalise Cannabis events, Extinction Rebellion and other environmental and social justice campaigns.

Shane’s 5 Steps to Sustainability were filmed live from an XR action.

Linda Benfield

Linda has been involved with the Green Gatherings for many years, getting stuck in to a wide variety of roles, from finance and admin to infrastructure procurement, catering 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 has long been involved in production work at events across the south of England and regularly attends event-focused conferences and strategy meetings.


The Board of Trustees is made up of volunteers who are committed to delivering on The Green Gathering’s charity objectives - all based around education for sustainability. 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.

Buffy Buroughs

Buffy is the GG charity’s youth rep and is involved with the festival's Clean Stream Resource Centre (aka 'extreme recycling'!).

She has a keen interest in sustainable agriculture and food security and in 2021 was recruited as a One Step Ambassador promoting the importance of climate-friendly behaviour in the run up to COP26.

Tony Phillips

Tony has a 30 year history of social enterprise and community development in the social care, environment and arts sectors through Realife Trust, the charity he set up in 1990.

Most recently, he is pioneering the GG charity's Regional Partners Project, connecting with like-minded communities across the UK.

Mickey Murphy

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

Francis Williams

Our newest trustee, full of energy for driving the charity’s mission.

Steve Muggeridge

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