About Looby Macnamara

Looby smiling and sunflower

Looby leads a productive career as a pioneer of permaculture and co-founder of Cultural Emergence.

I am an author, facilitator, designer, gardener, mother. I have written 4 books; Cultural Emergence, People & Permaculture, 7 Ways to Think Differently and Strands of Infinity.

I first came across permaculture in 1999, and it really was life-changing for me. I was deeply inspired by the collaborative learning environment and the focus on emerging solutions through collective wisdom.

Since then I have been deeply immersed in the permaculture movement, and have been a trustee and chair of the Permaculture Association and senior diploma tutor. I have been teaching since 2002 and have run many courses including a dozen teacher trainings.

I am a pioneer of personal and social permaculture. I wrote the first book to globally translate the principles and design methods of permaculture for people based systems; People & Permaculture. I am creator of the Design Web which has been used by thousands of people to create all sorts of designs.

In 2016 I set up the Applewood Permaculture Centre with my family, where we run courses and grow food.

I am part of the Mother Nature project - to support mothers in their process of personal transformation.

"I’ve had the privilege of teaching with Looby and experienced her warmth, caring and her keen mind. All this shines through in her book, Cultural Emergence which is an important contribution to the growing field of  ‘social permaculture’ – applying the principles of ecological design to our human cultures. Looby has provided us with an invaluable set of tools, principles and practices for creating  change in human systems – whether a family, a small group, a business, a community or a world that needs to shift its culture to support regeneration."

Author of the Fifth Sacred Thing, The Empowerment Manual and The Earth Path


Looby and her cat Casper

I am a resourceful facilitator who awakens each person’s talents and curiosity through play. I create deep transformative experiences through building community, creating a safe container and stretching edges. I facilitate with creativity and fun, creating a magical field of possibilities for the group, within which each person can shine and connect with their deepest, authentic self and a wider vision for humanity.

I have taught internationally and I love co-creating these fields of encouragement with other wisdom keepers. I have co-facilitated with Jon Young, Maddy Harland, Starhawk, Aranya, Chris Evans, Tomas Remairz, Lucy Walton, Peter Cow, Hannah Thorogood, Andy Goldring, Delvin Solkinson, Helena Von Bothmer and Marie - Louise Mederer.

“Looby Macnamara is blazing a trail across the new edge of permaculture design. Combining teaching methods from many traditions, Looby is building a bridge to guide people into the next level of their lives and livelihoods. Her books have uplifted thousands and her in-person classes take these teachings to a whole new level of understanding and application”

Delvin Solkinson
Visionary Permaculture

About Applewood Permaculture Centre

Applewood Permaculture Centre has been our family home and project since 2016. It is a beautiful 20 acre smallholding with gardens, orchard, lake, woodlands and pasture. It is home to many other beings including buzzards, tawny owls, dragonflies, bats, deer, badgers, foxes and countless song birds.

My partner Chris Evans is also a long-standing member of the UK and international permaculture community, and has lived and worked for many years in Nepal, where he is advisor to Himalayan Permaculture Centre. He is the co-author of The Farmer's Handbook (printed In Nepali; free English download).

We run a wide range of courses here, mainly focused on Permaculture or Cultural Emergence pathways.

The essence of each of our courses is empowerment, so that each person is able to bring their own unique set of skills and life experience to enrich the learning environment.