Setting the Dates!

A meeting of the Druid Camp Association in Stroud today agreed the dates and venue of 2020 Druid Camp, and began the planning process for another excellent druid camp.

The 2020 Camp will run between Wednesday 5th and Sunday 9th August.

The venue will again be the woodland glade at Flaxley, facilitated by Starcus and his team.

Ticket prices will be released shortly, but are not expected to change significantly although this year will see the return of early bird ticketing and an increase in “at the gate” prices. There will be no day ticketing.

Donation to Extinction Rebellion

At Druid Camp 2019 there was a collection which produced £133.90. It was decided this money should go to Extinction Rebellion in recognition of the theme of this year’s camp.

As it turned out, the Climate Emergency Fund was offering matched giving.

On Monday 26th August, on behalf of Drud Camp, bish paid in £140 to the XR fund-raiser, which was matched to £280. Every little helps, and if you’re moved to join the Rebellion yourself, who are we to judge? 😉

Draft DCA AGM 2019 Minutes

Post Camp Annual General Meeting held on the camp site on Sunday 11th August 2019.

  1. In attendance
    1. Mark Graham – DCA Chair
    2. Mark Rosher – DCA Secretary
    3. Eighteen Other Members (names redacted here)
  2. Mark Graham as Chair welcomed everyone to the meeting. All camp attendees were invited to attend as DCA members for the period. He noted that accounts would be available soon after camp once the treasurer had had opportunity to balance the ticket sales and expenditure. He noted that the camp had been successful and numbers had been close to site limits. He opened discussions, seeking feedback from those present.
  3. Site Toilets
    1. The steps leading up to the compost toilets in the woods were slippery when wet.
      1. Action: next year the steps will be overlaid with chickenwire to assist grip.
    2. The hand sanitiser and toilet paper were often depleted
      1. Action: add to toilet crew list, to replenish stock from Druid Camp (not Starcus) stock and to check more regularly (hourly?)
    3. Many people were unfamiliar with using compost toilets and were disposing of inappropriate items such as wet wipes which cannot be composted. They were variable in laying down sawdust after use.
      1. Action: Create laminated toilet use signs to hang in every stall, with simple instructions.
      2. Action: Add Toilet talk to Camp Virgins Talk
    4. Many people, generally men, were urinating in the woods where children might be playing. Although this is generally good practice it might be unsanitary.
      1. Action: Procure and install at least two straw bale urination toilets, one in each wood, with signage to indicate use.
    5. The disabled portaloo again was used inappropriately, as the hasp was ill-fitted and the combination padlock was inadequate to the task. This meant it was left unlocked by authorised users and it was used by others.
      1. Action: Mention the issue of the hasp to the supplier and inspect it for adequacy on delivery next year.
      2. Action: Obtain a more appropriate padlock(s) pre-camp.
    6. The additional portaloo (for those not disabled but unable to mount stairs to compost toilets) blew over in the high winds, making it unavailable for much of the camp.
      1. Action: Stake and tie down both/all portaloos
    7. It was noted that the smaller children found the compost toilets frightening and or difficult to use.
      1. Action: Source a small persons portaloo.
    8. Generally, despite the above, the toilets were seen to be very well looked after by the cleaning team, and the additional battery lighting was appreciated. A third compost toilet would be welcomed, as well as a disposal point for chemical toilet waste (big hole in ground?) As otherwise they were being poured into the compost toilets.
  4. Showers
    1. The showers were noted to be more reliably warm/hot than last year. However, the floor of the shower block is rotted and damaged, leading to unstable footing and poor drainage.
      1. Action: Report to Starcus team to remedy.
  5. Sauna
    1. The sauna was welcomed but it was noted the site crew were failing to keep the fire lit adequately or for the needed hours.
      1. Action: prepare and manage a sauna team with identified roles and times of operation.
  6. Site Crew
    1. Graham Butcher undertook to be the site carpenter for next year’s camp, arriving early to ensure general carpentry jobs were done prior to camp. The meeting thanked Graham for his offer.
      1. Action: Ensure Graham’s availability next year and involve as site crew coordinator.
  7. Druid Camp Virgins
    1. Druid Camp Virgin talk always excellent and essential especially for new druid campers. However, some folk arrive after it has happened and the info sheet presented by Gate while good is not as friendly as a talk.
      1. Action: Consider a daily Druid Camp Virgins talk perhaps pre 10am meeting alongside the Stav and Yoga. (Bish might offer this)
  8. Cafe
    1. Cafe was seen to be greatly improved over previous year. The constant free drinking water supply for the nearby kids area was appreciated.
    2. There were requests for children’s meals. The main meal provided was both too large for young people and not “what they wanted”. Such things as beans on toast and pasta were requested, could these be made available on demand?
      1. Action: pass request on to Starcus team.
    3. There was a call for more cakes, and perhaps sandwiches and rolls.
      1. Action: pass request on to Starcus team.
    4. Not directly a cafe issue but the white van was missed. Apparently this service which served the pre-Starcus site has ended.
      1. Action: Sam Gadsden offered to stock and resell a number of long life items.
      2. Action: DCA team to investigate if a local dairy provider would visit site on a daily basis to provide milk, bread, butter…
  9. Social Area
    1. Discussions noted the lack of a comfortable sofa area in the cafe such as prevailed at pre-Starcus camps.
    2. Glenn and Wendy Hall have a large bell tent that could be made available if help was available to erect it. Sofas would be needed from, say, Sofa project.
      1. Action: agree social area bell tent. Locate in quiet area near main circle.
    3. The Quiet Space provided by Jay was well used and appreciated. The meeting hoped to see it again next year, perhaps though in a quieter space.
  10. Gate
    1. Gate ran very well, and thanks to Esther (not present here) and her team of gate folk was expressed by all.
    2. People turning up early, on Tuesday, were identified as getting in the way of site preparation. 
      1. Action: A cash payment of ten pounds per person would be charged at the Gate for anyone other than agreed set-up crew arriving before 08:00 Wednesday.
    3. The new wristbands were appreciated. Discussions went into whether facilitators and set up crew should have different colour bands, but overall consensus was no, we are not hierarchical. However, a second wristband for set up crew might prove useful.
      1. Action: Obtain new Druid Camp 2020 wristbands in one or two colours as needed.
  11. First Aid
    1. The meeting discussed the sole known medical issue at this year’s camp – a deep cut resulting from a child tripping into a tea light jam jar. The active response by first aider Emily Blackett was acknowledged with thanks.
    2. The first aid team would like a centrally placed tent for a first aid position with supplies. This would not wholly replace the first aid station at Gate but that would become the backup for first aid. In the tent there should be a table.
      1. Action: DCA team to procure and erect a suitable enclosure (another gazebo?) and a table and chairs.
  12. Children’s area
    1. The opportunities granted to the young of our camp were celebrated. The chidren’s team were fantastic.
    2. The children’s marquee failed in the high winds and was damaged.
      1. Action: to ensure it is either repaired or replaced.
    3. Clare Lee offered to lead on safeguarding policy for next year.
      1. Action: to accept.
  13. Marquee Stability
    1. The meeting discussed the recent high winds and the risk of marquee collapse following the incident on Friday 9th during the main talk with Kristoffer Hughes, where the presentation was halted in order to secure the main marquee.
      1. Action: to set up a site crew in liaison with Starcus’s team to regularly check pins and ropes.
  14. Assistance Dogs
    1. While we had had only three(?) assistance dogs this year it was our first year of allowing such. Discussion ensued as to how it had gone for the camp as a whole. Discussions included what exactly was an assistance dog and noted that the UKL NHS does not accept or identify emotional support dogs as working dogs.
    2. It was strongly noted that the person most vocal about assistance dogs in the morning meetings was not keeping her dog on a lead as required. This was the subject of a complaint by another assistance dog user, who felt she was unfairly impacted through holding to the site rules.
      1. Action: to identify and clarify the position on assistance dogs and DDA requirements, and to create a policy and adhere to it.
  15. Next Camp dates and ticket prices
    1. To be agreed with Starcus but anticipated to be first week August. Tentative dates 5th to 9th August 2020.
      1. Action: to confirm dates and publicise as soon as possible.
    2. Ticket prices to be determined by DCA meeting but consideration to be given to early bird pricing.
      1. Action: DCA committee. 

Planning for 2020

We are already working on the theme and content for Druid Camp 2020. However, it is far too early for us to publish anything here. The next key release will be the confirmed dates for Druid Camp 2020 and as soon as we can we will update you here, and on the Facebook page. In the meantime, if you want to review the 2019 blog pages, you can do that here.

Post Camp Pre Meeting

After a fantastic Druid Camp 2019 there’s a lot of stuff that happens. We’ve had no time to meet up since but here’s a bullet list, mainly for us so we can remember what we’ve done.

  • We held the AGM on Sunday 11th. The minutes for that are being circulated for accuracy and will be published soon.
  • Esther is doing the accounts and they too will be published on here shortly. They should show a small but decent amount left in the bank which will fund next year’s camp.
  • The web site has successfully implemented SSL security and no longer shows “not secure” or similar on web browsers. This should give confidence to people making payments through it.
  • Feedback is coming in via the team@ address and is being stored currently in the Association Google drive (not public).
  • We need a coherent and simple refund policy to allow for people who have last minute changes.

Susan Marie Paramor

“drum and voice workshop”

The Magick of Songs of the land.

Susan Marie Paramor will explore through song drum, rattle, tambourine, the legends and myths of the land.

Open to all ages. The band Car Dia will be playing on Friday evening before DragonsFly.

Duelling Dragons. Written by Sean Rice
“Tales of Magic and Mystery”

A presentation by Sean Mychal Rice and Susan Marie Paramor. Dramatised readings poetic interpretations of Ancient tales from Albion.

Car Dia

Car Dia writes about Standing stones Gods and Goddesses ancient trees she brings with her band a magical mixture of woven stories in song.

The audience are encouraged to sing and bring their drums to the performance, which will be on Friday evening before Dragonsfly.

Before performances a drum and voice workshop brings the participants together with rattle drum and voice.

Susan Marie Paramor Car Dia

Plus, Susan Marie and the band fiddle player will be giving a workshop performance reading of Duelling Dragons tales of Magic & Ancient tales of Albion on the Friday.

Sea Essences

Julie Bowman will be at Druid camp this year with her Sea Essences, and will be running a workshop (or two) about essences with a focus on how they can help stop life’s crises from affecting us so fundamentally.

Come along to the workshops and gain a deeper insight. These exploratory, experiential workshops will be focussing on vibrational essences that have been created in a number of ways. We will also be looking at the history of essences.

These workshops will help you to gain a deeper understanding of, andhelp with connecting to your own self and relinquishing stuff that is carried from other histories