IPCUK Convergence site design. Part 2: analysing

Part 2: Analysing the information

This is part two of three in a series of posts about the IPCUK convergence site design. Read part one, surveying.

Six HatsLater on, with bellies full of great food and brains bursting full of information from the day’s observations and considerations, we noticed a limit to our own potential for absorbing more information. So in the glow of the fire from the wood burner in Gidney Cabin we entered into analysis by musing through the 6 Thinking Hats of Edward de Bono…

This was a really useful way to round off the day of surveying and enter into the digestion phase of the information.

One of the really useful resources on site are the available base maps that we could utilise:

Gilwell Park base mapOn Thursday morning Celia did a great job of turning this into a flip chart size sketch that we could then use later. Hannah drew up a brainstorm of elements (both essentials and possibles) for the design considerations. Joe considered sectors of the site. Sandra continued typing up the process in really useful detail. (This document is available if anyone would like to have a look).

We then took a few elements each and considered the intrinsic qualities, needs and yields of each one:


Intrinsic characteristics




Allowing for people to flow through

Sheltered space


Easy access

Spacious enough to hold x people + luggage?

Enough staff, well equipped

Clear opening hours

Easy & warm welcome

Quick orientation & info

Confidence and security

Welcome gazebo

Welcoming & happy

Open on arrival day

Little shelter

Table, chairs

Welcome poster

Electricity, light?

Feeling welcome


Workshop spaces (>5)




flipchart, pens,…



Open Space (2-3)

Open / in use morning and afternoon (early evening)

Bustly, a lot of change of people / workshops




flipchart, pens,…


Sufficient distance from other ws-spaces / Closeness to other ws-spaces

Sheltered space

Undesignated ws-space

Less work for crew

Big space

Big = can host all attendees


Large flat dry ground

Sheltered location


Structure (put up & tat down?)

Seating, Stage,

loud PA (Bar 1 nearby)

Light, Projector

Filming / Streaming equipment & space

Not too much exterior noise

Good acoustics


Large dry space (dining room, opening circle space, main talks / keynote, general assembly, entertainment)

Lots of seating


Dancing space

Next big step area

“office” hours

electricity? wifi, privacy

whiteboards, projector?

table, chairs

Strategy, Mediation

Private space

Global peace

„Nothing on“ space

Rather quiet

Open day and night

Retreat and connection?


Chairs & Tables

Internet access?




Getting things done?

Connecting with others

Catching up sleep

Wellbeing area

Long days

Quiet / relaxing vibe

Water in / out

fire wood


quiet, beauty

a little out of the way but not too far

Vehicle access?

own structures


Hot drinks

wellbeing / health

Market space


Table, Chairs, Roof

Walls? access to secure storage

Lots of lovely, interaction, Opportunity to offset ticket price, money



Power (solar?)

Quiet & dark

Not too near hubbub

Near food / drinks?

Cycle / solar powered?


comfortable seating

Chilled out space

Escape from crowd


Compost loos

24 hours

Easy access (using / emptying) Smell reduction, Water, Hand washing possible, Peeing possible (sight shelter for peebales,…)

Soak, Toilet paper

Regular checking

Space to take poo to

Short distances to loos

Sustainability (not soiling water)




Getting people fed in a reasonable amount of time

Tasty food made by happy people

Electricity, Water, Space for cutting veg, Pots pans… Space for queues, Design for how to give out food

Happy people! Satisfaction…

Covered dining space

Meal times


Shelter, Weather proofing, Near lodges, Seating, Tables, Near washing up, Anchor points (in case of tarp)

Happy eaters

Shelter, Chairs & tables at non-meal times

Noise at meal times


Street food

Opening hours depend on sales people

Extra, on top of PAB-café

Vans?, Power, Water, Easy access for cars

Good footfall, Central / near workshops (food on the go) not too near café?

Quick food for meal skippers, kids, people on different time zones, get lagged, fuzzy pups,…



Fox-proof (lockable?) storage, Washing up

Eating space (tables & chairs?) Any support in food preservation? (fridge in crew lodge?)

Rubbish / compost process, Food / fuel to buy, Tips on how to use site (available resources)

Tidy clean fields

Happy healthy campers

Undisturbed caterers

Bar 1

At back of big space

Serves drinks while dancing / entertainment takes place


Stock, Hot water, lighting, Seating?, pump, a bar, bottle opener, corkscrew, Shelving / storage (barrel rack etc.)

Glasses, glass wash station, Cash tin, Float

Licence (+Lockable space) Loud (!) PA, Toilets /…

great conversations

laughter, fun

Drunk people

Muddy patch of ground


Waste (empty bottles, bottle rps?, crisp packets, slops,...)

dirty glasses



Bar 2

Pub-like atmosphere

cozy, enclosed space

not as loud as Bar 1

See bar 1

Tables & chairs/seating

Beer mats etc. to make it feel pub-like

See Bar 1


Run by PAB (Chris Pepper & Fran to ask)

eat-in / take away options

Power, water, facilities, rubbish facilities, tables & chairs, lockable secure storage

No thirst


surplus of money

no trash

Juice / Tea (non alcoholic) bar

Open during day till late (closed bar but open space?)

Power, Light, Water, Comfortable seating, Music, nice lighting, warm, open late - offer take-aways for after bar closing? space still open (after bar closing)

Alcohol-free space

hot & cold drinks?

Chilled, comfy

Daytime café-space


Crew camping

noise curfew (11-7 quiet)

Close to / away from activities. Space for arriving early / last to leave (self-contained)

Tool lock-up (cars nearby?) Noise curfew (quiet 11-7)

Well-rested crew

easy crew communication

Family camping

Own fire within

Own fire within earshot

Near food and kids area

safety, quiet, ???



Night owl


Safe paths for drunkards, Fire pit, Near glass disposal? Away from people who need quiet / non-drinkers

Merriment that is inclusive, safe, non-offensive

Early birds

Quiet nights, loud morning

Away from late night activities, No fire?

Quiet evening area

Loud morning space

happy morning people

Snoring space / snorers corner


Be away from light sleepers

Noise at night time

Teen space


Electricity, Wifi, Shelter, Lights, Privacy vs. Support / minimum supervision, Freedom, Resources (…), Music? Tinned music?




Great perspective


Kids area



Resources (...)

Storage, Peace, Near food and other act. Parental connection, By big / main fire, Near family camping, Near woods, Washing, Snacks, Water, Toilets

Happy families



Fire lighting


Program & Activity


After exploring the potential web of elements we went back to the bigger picture of the site itself. We considered the sectors of the site. There are a number of noise sectors to consider that will have an impact on any area of the site we chose to use - in some areas the site is affected by noise from the road, other areas will be affected by a potential building site that may be in action during September (we are waiting to find out about this) and the area away from this has a lot of intermittent and unpredictable noise from other groups using the children’s on site activities.

There are a range of other sectors around the site of wonderful views, access routes, wind and sun.  The consideration of all of these have fed into the potential placing of elements on the site.

Having collated and considered yet more information we decided to invite Hannah Morrice, our liaison person at Gilwell Park to the hearth of the Gidney Cabin to ask many questions and explore potential options with. Hannah is very supportive of permaculture, she intends to attend as much of the event as she can and is exploring the extent of the interactions we can build between permaculture, Gilwell Park and the scouting movement. Hannah also has a long list of action points that she took away from this meeting, a huge list of questions to answer, and things to consider / discuss with her colleagues.

Having gone right into various details of the design we decided to pull back out to the main pattern of the site again and took the opportunity before dusk to reexamine the site. This time we were going to specific areas to explore potential ideas, consider what structures might fit where, how we might utilise spaces in creative ways, stack functions into various elements.

As darkness fell we took the opportunity to explore which areas were served well by existing lights, where the dark spots were etc...


Part three here.