Campfire Convention was conceived as a social network in 2016 and as a launch preview, we staged the first Campfire Convention 001.UK in the Black Mountains in fields around The Bridge Inn in Herefordshire on the Welsh Borders. The weekend was attended by 250 people and we invited Brian Eno and Scilla Elworthy as keynote speakers, around a whole variety of sessions discussing Universal Basic Income, Last Life Quarter, the Refugee Crisis and much more. Eno later accepted our invitation to become the first Campfire patron. 

Here is a short film made about the event by young film-maker Josh Harris.

In 2017 we concentrated on starting to light Beacons around the UK as we went on tour staging Campfire Conversations from urban centres such as Edinburgh and Hartlepool in the north through to Axbridge, Lewes and Bournemouth in the south. Many were hosted by people we hadn’t yet met face-to-face and each had a unique theme and direction. The Axbridge event offered seven speakers across an all day event and was like a mini-festival, complete with DJ session in the evening, camping and views across the Somerset levels to Glastonbury Tor.

Campout 2018 trailblazed our first experiment with the Open Space concept, back at The Bridge Inn. A small gathering came together around a blank blackboard with time slots down the left and DIY slots for sessions, as Campouters proposed their own programme across two days. It was a remarkable success despite people’s uncertainty on arrival! At heart of the Campfire ethos has always been empowering members of our own community and this experiment showed that attendees were enthusiastic to overcome any initial hesitancy and to work together to self-organise an open and democratic programme process. Our Firecasts 011 and 012 feature the insightful reactions and reflections of those who came. 

Campout 2019 was staged as a full Campout (200 people) at Field 725 just outside the Somerset town of Frome and featured a vibrant mix of talks, conversations, fireside sessions, wellbeing and music. It was a big success with attendees developing themes through the weekend. 

Pete Lawrence’s review listed some of the key emergent themes as follows: Rediscovering and Welcoming our Eight Year Old Self; The Power of Ceremony; The Rhythm of Conversation; The Joy of Singing; Grieving and Hope; The 5-Day Experience is a Journey that You Can’t ‘Pop in’ To; Leadership and Stepping Up; Campfires Bring out the Best Intimacy; Radical Talent Spotting and It All Comes Back to Love

Highlights included a keynote by Roger Hallam, co-founder of Extinction Rebellion and talks by Jacqueline Walker and Theo Simon

Reactions to the event were very positive:

I left Campout feeling not only inspired but more hopeful than I’ve felt in years!”  Brett Hennig

Song, dance, babies, love and grace, conscious conversation, delicious food, men and women in ceremony, laughter, hay bales, openness to change – this is what the future looks like! So glad to have been involved.”   Lynne Franks

I had the time of my life – the best weekend ever”  Sam Aukland

I feel so fortunate to have been part of it. Thanks to everyone who made it so special – life changing even”  Rose Lennard

One of the most enjoyable, educational, warm and enriching experiences of my life”  Andy Morgan

Photo Gallery

World Harmony Online for Summer Solstice 2020 was a particularly ambitious six-stage online festival over summer solstice weekend which attracted a large audience from over 60 countries.

The weekend launched themes around community connection and universal wisdom with a beautiful visual representation of Beacons, both traditional and futuristic, using drone programming and XF, with audio soundtrack featuring Pip The Poet’s reading of ‘Desiderata’ and culminated in the specially commissioned version of ‘Love Is The Answer’ sung by Mozez. 

Campout 2022. After a two year hiatus during the Covid lockdowns and pandemic restrictions, Campout’s long-awaited return to a field happened at Fernhill Farm in the Mendips in July 2022. This was our first co-created event, over four days, with Daniel Dobbie’s Angelfish and Dan Astin-Gregory’s Elevate Community and a similar mix of talks, conversations, open space, wellbeing, music, arts and crafts, which also included a children’s space. 

Dan Astin-Gregory was our keynote speaker and he also programmed an Elevate day on a variety of topics from personal development to social change. We also featured a cacao ceremony from Dan Knowlson and the hugely successful transformational breathwork into dance with Yael Hochenberg.

For more info or the 2022 programme, a photo gallery and more click here or the image below.

Reflections on 2022 Campout:

Feeling into the tender places in me, the gifts received, the many conversations, the utter MAGIC, the vibration of UNCONDITIONAL LOVE, as I transition from the beautiful tapestry that was woven in our Campout 2022” Yael Hochenberg

Small 300 person events are the future for community, growth and rebellion!” Daniel Dobbie

Creating new governance” Sam Aukland 

"If you want to help to change the world and have a lot of fun doing it, consider joining Campfire Convention. The best alternative to Facebook that I know and the best chance you have of meeting fascinating people and making great new friends . Best of all , come to the events, come to Campfire Campout : be part of the solution and warm your heart around the fire.”   Ros Floyd-Sanchez

A gathering that taught me how to dream big again and that made me feel more powerful than I ever did before. A community that gave me hope and made me feel home” Leah Willi

Campout 2023 was another story of co-creation, this time with the Elevate community at Braziers Park on the edge of the Chilterns in the Oxfordshire countryside.

"It is vast, in it's wonderment and inspiration”  Jessica Mallock

“A beautifully held space. Best festival ever, thank you” Gitika Partington

“And if those 300 odd attendees have gone out into the world this week with even half of the connectedness and empowerment that I've been living with, as I'm absolutely sure is the case, then it goes without saying, that Campout 2023 was a mind blowing, life-changing event. Thank you from the bottom of my heart♥️”  Gaynor Stanley

“A truly beautiful experience.” Leora Lightwoman

“We are onto something” Bob Hillary

“A terrific inspirational and fun and connected four days” Sarah Dick

Here is a short film made by Andy Blithe / Aturn films