DIY green roofs – learn how to do it yourself on 29 & 30 October

The next opportunity to learn how to ‘do green roofs yourself’ is coming up.

On the weekend of 29 & 30 October, Building Green with Organic Roofs and Brighton Permaculture Trust, is running a workshop on the subject.

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For bookings go here.

These highly successful workshops have been running for several years. Don’t miss this opportunity to have a fun weekend of learning about this fascinating subject, picking up new skills and quizzing the experts on how to ‘do it yourself’.

For bookings go here.

Green roof course taking bookings for October

The DIY Green Roofs course is open for bookings, and takes place October 29-30.

It’s a highly successful weekend course that gets great feedback, and draws participants from across the UK and beyond.

More information, and bookings, here.

Building Green tour of Brighton & Hove

The second day of our DIY Green Roof workshop involved a tour of some inspirational buildings in Brighton & Hove.

First was the Velo Cafe, with a green roof fitted by Organic Roofs. Lee Evans talked the group through the trials and tribulations of green roofing on a pitched slope. The roof now looks great, and we spotted a female grey wagtail feeding on it.

Building Green DIY Green Roof workshoppers taking a tour of the Velo Cafe, Brighton

Building Green DIY Green Roof workshoppers taking a tour of the Velo Cafe, Brighton

Grey wagtail on the roof of the Velo Cafe, Brighton

Grey wagtail on the roof of the Velo Cafe, Brighton

Building Green DIY Green Roof workshoppers taking a tour of the Velo Cafe, Brighton

Building Green DIY Green Roof workshoppers taking a tour of the Velo Cafe, Brighton

We visited Madeira Drive to see the ‘world famous sheltered walk’ and the green wall. Great inspiration for greening the other 4 building surfaces – which are often forgotten amongst all the talk of roofs! This was the first guided visit to the Madeira Drive Green Wall, and Building Green highlighted the threats and opportunities for its continued conservation.

Building Green DIY Green Roof workshop crew hearing about the special green wall at Madeira Drive, Brighton

Building Green DIY Green Roof workshop crew hearing about the special green wall at Madeira Drive, Brighton

Finally we went to Whitehawk to see the great wildflower roof at the Crew Club. Unfortunately the roofs on the Children’s Centre and library are faring less well – much of the planting has died and the roofs should really be refurbished. Still, it’s a hotspot for green roofing and green building – nearby houses are making their own contribution too, as this well managed ivy attests.

The 'chalk downland' green roofs of the Crew Club community centre, Whitehawk, Brighton

The ‘chalk downland’ green roofs of the Crew Club community centre, Whitehawk, Brighton

Whitehawk home - carefully grown and tended ivy as a home for wildlife and attractive front garden. Brighton

Whitehawk home – carefully grown and tended ivy as a home for wildlife and attractive front garden. Brighton

All in all a great weekend – new friendships, new networks, and some new neural pathways from all this learning!

DIY green roof workshop a success!

This weekend’s DIY Green Roof workshop was a real success!

Happy green roofers with their green roofed bird boxes

Happy green roofers with their green roofed bird boxes

We had participants from Brighton & Hove and further afield across the country…and a keen Spanish green roofer who travelled over from Córdoba!

We discussed the fine points of projects on sheds, house extensions and even a Dutch barge.

Everyone put their learning into practice by building their own green roofs and installing them on a bird box they also put together.

The second day was a tour of some green roofs and green walls.

Lee Evans, course tutor, talking participants through the benefits and technical aspects of green roofing at Organic Roofs HQ

Lee Evans, course tutor, talking participants through the benefits and technical aspects of green roofing at Organic Roofs HQ

Lee Evans, course tutor, demonstrating how to build the bird box to the course participants.

Lee Evans, course tutor, demonstrating how to build the bird box to the course participants.

Course participants DIY-ing their bird boxes

Course participants DIY-ing their bird boxes

James Farrell, course tutor, talking participants through a container green roof at Organic Roofs HQ

James Farrell, course tutor, talking participants through a container green roof at Organic Roofs HQ

James Farrell, course tutor, talking participants through a container green roof at Organic Roofs HQ

James Farrell, course tutor, talking participants through a container green roof at Organic Roofs HQ

Finished bird box with a green roof

Finished bird box with a green roof

Happy course participant with their green roofed bird box

Happy course participant with their green roofed bird box

Not too late to book your DIY Green Roof course!

It’s not too late to book your place on this year’s DIY green roof course!

  • learn about how to build green roofs
  • understand the history of global green roofing, and the benefits of the modern habitat-based approach
  • put the principles into practice – build your own green roofed bird box to take home
  • visit inspirational green roofs and green walls in Brighton & Hove
  • get expert advice on your project
  • enjoy the surroundings of Organic Roof’s new workshop, right on the banks of Shoreham harbour
  • have fun, learn new skills and make new friends!

You never know, you might be so inspired that you jack your job in after the course – and become a professional green roofer. That’s exactly what previous course participant Lee Evans did!

To book your place, visit https://brightonpermaculture.org.uk/courses/ecobuild/greenroofs

Happy green roofer with the green roofed bird box we built on the Building Green DIY weekend

Happy green roofer with the green roofed bird box we built on the Building Green DIY weekend

A visit to Organic Roofs

I visited Building Green partner Organic Roofs‘ workshop and green roof demonstration centre in Shoreham recently.

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Lee Evans with the green roof research station at Organic Roofs HQ, Shoreham

Organic Roofs head honcho Lee Evans showed me around the site, which has an amazing view of the harbour.

We will be holding the next green roof DIY workshop there on 24/25 October – book here. It’s a great venue for it.

On the site are two green roofs created on shipping containers, a nursery for green roof plants, and a new research station that will be measuring the performance of different substrates and plant systems. There’s also a ‘waste office’ which takes after the award winning Waste House in Brighton.

Organic Roofs won a number of awards recently, including NRFC Green Roof of the Year, Brighton & Hove’s Best Environmental Industry Company, as well as being finalists in 2 other categories at the #BAHBAs – Fastest Growing Company and Best Place to Work.

Container green roof at Organic Roofs HQ, Shoreham

Container green roof at Organic Roofs HQ, Shoreham

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Plant nursery, Organic Roofs HQ, Shoreham

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Organic Roofs HQ, Shoreham