Community run Centre for Environmental Education - practical courses in heritage building (IHBC Recognised CPD Provider) natural, greenwood and rural skills

Orchard Barn, Ringshall, Suffolk, UK, IP14 2LY


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Suffolk Community Foundation funding

Heritage Lottery Fund logo
IHBC CPD provider logo

We held our AGM
online this year. View our 19-20 Annual Report.

Or watch our 19-20 video report on our You Tube channel.

Orchard Barn annual report 19-20

COURSES CALENDER for 2022 TBC - If you are interested in attending a course at Orchard Barn when these things are possible again please email

As a leading social enterprise we specialise in the delivery of Timber Framing Restoration Skills, Timber Framing, Wattle and Daub and Lime courses for professionals, home-owners, self-builders, and anyone with an interest in getting hands-on with natural materials (or learning how to instruct a builder more knowledgably). IHBC CPD atendance certificates .

See inside an ancient Wattle and Daub panel in this YouTube Video

View our FEEDBACK TREE for 2019

Vouchers for courses are available. They also make excellent birthday, retirement or retraining presents.

EXCITING NEWS - thanks to recent funding, work has progressed well this summer on the reinstatement of our 1580 Suffolk Long House We're undertaking the timber framing in a 'like-for-like' manner. Enrole on a Timber Framing course with us, and learn traditional timber framing using locally sourced trees and authentic hand tools.

Work has restarted on the Long House timber frame

To check availability on courses, book a course, discuss bespoke training,  or arrange a talk
,  please email Sarah or phone here on 07766-054042.


We're making great progress with the Long House!

Winter 2021/22 MORE FANTASTIC NEWS  OBee CIC has been awarded funding from National Lottery Local Connections, Mid Suffolk District Council, Suffolk Community Foundation and Ipswich Rotary. As part of our community building plans we are stepping up volunteer working parties this winter. This includes peg making (to hold the mortise and tenons of the Long House together) and shingle making (to clad the roof with).

Interested in applying for a place? Email

The colour coded image below shows the progress of volunteers and students on cutting the Long House timber frame (correct on1st October 2021) Green = complete Orange = works in progress Red = to be started

colour coded image of timber frame Long House progress

As usual, practical activities will be delivered in our outdoor teaching spaces outside the main barn. We specialise in small group sizes with plenty of 1-1 tuition provided by the tutor from the distance needed to maintain safety for all involved.

Our 'new normal'  is the reinstatement of a holistic approach of working with Nature that provides participants with greater awareness, experience and insights into the interconnected of the health of humans with the health of our environment.

Volunteers celebrate

Foundations signed off by Building Regs. After 4.5 tonnes of hand mixed hot limecrete volunteers take time out to relax and celebrate with a mug of tea!

Did you know we have our own YouTube channel? This video (about how we make oak pegs) was made by volunteers Andy and Nina Stevens.

OR check out our YouTube video of the Orchard Barn highlights from 20/21

YouTube logo

We also have lively, informative Twitter, Facebook and Instagram feeds.

twitter, instagram and facebook logos