Course Availability: Short Courses and Workshops

Lifeways 2020 is cancelled due to the current situation. 

The new dates for 2021 are from  25-31 July 2021.

For any enquiries contact:

Lifeways is an annual event, a week long experience of workshops, activities and music, suitable for men, women and children.

People of all ages explore, create, and dream in a variety of sessions throughout the week based on a common theme.  Children engage in a variety of experiences including camping, clay work, food preparation, painting, and cooperative games.

The theme of our next Lifeways is 'Bridging the River'

Bridging the River

As you walk along the road of life you may walk through pleasant meadows, along calm seashores or even through dappled woodland glades.

Sometimes, however, you may have to cross treacherous mountain crevasses or tempestuous rivers.

Some of these obstacles can be overcome through shear determination but sometimes you have to build a bridge in order to cross the river.

A bridge can take many forms; it may be just a branch across a bubbling stream,it may be a rope swaying side to side or it may be built of stone ready to stand the test of time.

Bridging the river is an art that requires work and imagination.You may have to collect the building blocks, work with others or even learn new skills before you can start the task at hand.

But a bridge can be built, the river can be crossed and your path can continue on the other side. You may find yourself in a new land - what lies across the threshold?

This year at Lifeways we will be Bridging the River - learning some of the skills required, working with old friends and new to discover what it takes to build a bridge that crosses a river.


Morning Workshops for Adults

Here you can explore the theme of the week through creative study, discussion and hands-on experience.

1.Clowning: Laughter as a Bridge with Vivian Gladwell

“Laughter is the shortest distance between two people.” Victor Borge– Danish Comedian, Pianist and Conductor.

Laughter builds the many bridges that reconnect us to ourselves and to others. Through play and clowning we meet what is most human within ourselves - which is the first and biggest step towards discovering the world within and without. A workshop of play and silliness that leaves you looking at life with new eyes.

2.Imagination: The Bridge Between – Writing Creatively with Paul Matthews

Through writing tasks (playful and profound) outer things will reveal their secrets, and they in turn will lend their images to interpret and express what lives inside us. Adventures in the garden will lead to quiet composition indoors and in response to each other.

3.Bridging into Creativity - Stained Glass Mosaics with Renate McGavin

Bridging a river changes one's perspective as a whole new world opens up - in this workshop we will work with all sorts of perspectives as we work with light and glass to create something beautiful. The workshop is suitable for beginners and advanced. Participants are welcome to bring designs if they wish. You will be asked for an added charge of £25 to cover material costs.

4.Building Bridges with Basketry with Nick Vane

Craftwork brings our creative imagination into relationship with natural materials through the purposeful activity of our hands. They build a bridge between our inner self and Nature by enlivening our senses and from the warm satisfaction of making something that is both beautiful and useful. In this workshop we shall be learning how to make a useful basket out of natural willow. Suitable for beginners and those wishing to build on existing basic skills. You will be asked for an added charge of £15 to cover material costs.

5.Heartening Stories with Janice Witherspoon

Eye to eye, mind to mind and heart to heart - storytelling brings people together and helps to open hearts. In this workshop we will use both personal stories and traditional tales to build a storytelling community for the week. The workshop will include time spent in the biodynamic garden seeing what is opening and unfolding there.

6.Speech and Eurythmy - The Rainbow Bridge between Heaven and Earth with Geoff and Maria Norris

Ancient wisdom tells us that human beings were created by the words of God. We still experience the mysterious power of words in song, poetry and prose in many languages. In this workshop you may experience an understanding of the deeper meaning of words through speech and the gentle art of Eurythmy - movements which make speech visible to us.

7.The Bridge between the Living and “The Dead” in Wolfram’s Parzival with Andrew Wolpert

We have destiny companions with us here on earth and also among those who have died. Parzival bridges the divide between the Arthurians and the Guardians of the Grail, resolves conflict, and is accompanied by his companions on the other side of the threshold.


Morning activities for Children aged 0 – 8

The following crèches are available each morning from 8.50am – 12.15pm

Parent & Toddler 0 – 3 year olds

Here the youngest Lifeways participants can enjoy a peaceful environment, while parents can take this special time to observe and connect with their little ones and with each other. There’ll be songs, story, indoor and outdoor play and parents will be guided with making simple crafts for their children to enjoy.

Playcamp 4 – 6 year old

In this group the children will paint, draw and enjoy simple craft activities. There will be stories, circle games and songs as well as a daily walk and plenty of time for creative play.

Daycamp 7 – 8 year olds

This is a morning group with slightly more challenging crafts and outdoor activities for the older child.

Children’s Camp 9 – 14 year olds

The camp is divided into younger (9-11) and older (12-14) camps, which are right next to each other. Some of the activities are shared and others separated. Morning and evening programmes will include games, crafts, helping with meal preparation, and other activities The campers choose ONE afternoon group for the duration of the conference. Please help your 9-14 year old child to pack a tent, sleeping bag, blanket, towel, good walking shoes, waterproof clothing and boots, swimming gear, old clothes, torch and eating utensils (plate, bowl, cup, knife, fork and spoon). Tents may be shared by children in the same age groups.  Please make your child aware that at Lifeways he/she will have a (welcomed) break from mobile phones, tablets, mp3 players, computer games, laser pens or any other electrical devices. Do apply early to ensure your child’s place and remember to fill in their first and second-best workshop preferences as well as meal options on the application form.


Afternoon Groups (*Adults only, ** Children only, ***Adults and Children)

Adults only

A* Life After Life - Crossing the bridge between death and re-birth with Dr Sue Peat & Rev Roger Druitt

Exploring the mysteries of what happens after our death, we can ask how best to prepare for the spiritual journey from life on earth to that in the spiritual word - and back to our next earthly incarnation. How too may we begin to influence this now? Rudolf Steiner gave many spiritual exercises that can help us connect with those who have died in a healthy and positive way - benefiting both ourselves and those who have died.

B*Interactive Holistic Bee-culture and Bee-keeping with Christian Grützmacher & Ianthe Lauwaert

Hands on: we will do maintenance in the existing honey-bee garden, care for the log hive and work on a new hive, so bring your work clothes, gloves and wellies. Hearts on: we will do social and artistic exercises related to bees, as well as contemplative bee observation. Heads on: we will discover the magical realm of honeybee culture through conversation, so bring all and any questions you may have.

C*Bridging Heaven and Earth with Colour with Liri Filippini

In this painting workshop we will be exploring certain aspects of colour and light whilst embarking on an artistic guided journey towards wholeness of being. We will be using specific exercises designed to facilitate an enlivening, heart opening process to build the bridge between our spiritual and physical existence as human beings. No prior painting experience required.

D*Listening as a Bridge to Community with Juanna Ladaga

Working with acoustics, music and games we will explore how sound can help create a listening space for community building.

E* Imagination Builds Bridges with Gianluca Reggiani

We will be working joyfully together by performing some exercises for actors using Michael Chekhov’s Technique that concerns and develops imagination. We will try to “build a bridge”, a connection, between the body of one’s own personality and the powerful body of one’s own individuality which is used by actors to create “characters”. No previous acting experience needed - just bring along your body ready to be moved by imagination!

F* Making Magical Models with Robert Byrnes

See, touch, move and make (with ease) models that flow endlessly and transform magically.

You will be asked for an added charge of £5 to cover material costs.

Children only

G**Energetic Outdoor Games for 11 – 14 year olds with Milly Woodrow

Social, energetic, imaginative games played together outside on the lawn.

H**Simple Woodwork for 11 – 14 year olds with Louis Lines

Learning to use tools and techniques, we will start and complete a simple project.

I**Candle Dipping & Decorating for 8 – 14 year olds with Ted Prestbury

Learning how to create beautiful candles through form and colour.

J**Wet Felting for 8 – 12 year olds with Hellen Williams

From fleece to felt - exploring the wet felting process, creating 2D and 3D works with infinite possibilities. 

K**Clay Digging & Modelling for 6 - 10 year olds

Adults and children

L***Land Art: Building Bridges to the Natural World – for adults and children of all ages* with Arthur Dyer

Working with the elements, welcoming the elementals, prepare to get stuck in! In dialogue with the lush surroundings of Emerson College and drawing inspiration from land artists such as Andy Goldsworthy, we will seek to make visible beauties unseen. We will gather, sculpt and co-create, leaving an offering as a collective gesture of appreciation for this generous earth. *All children must be accompanied by a parent.

M***Build a Bridge with Songs for 5- 7 year olds with a parent with Sarka Kubschova

Follow a story with games, craft and singing along to the ukulele.

N***Pick ’n’ Mix Crafts - for 2 - 6 year olds with a parent  with Philipa Lovemore

Creative experiences for children and parents.

O***Stay and Play for 0 - 3 year olds with a parent with Christina Lines

Play area for children and a simple craft for parents.


Lifeways is organised by Florrie Cassell, Louis Lines, Yvette Dellsperger, Sue Peat and Ted Prestbury.

Cover Design by Vija Docherty                                             

Conference Secretary Naamah Pinkerfeld

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