Shambala 2014 Video.

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Shambala Festival 2015



We’re back and in ACTION.

This summer we’re focusing all our efforst on ONE festival. The awesome, the lucky, the super GREEN Shambala Festival.

Below is your invitation to become an Eco-Ranger. Don’t hesitate, we only have about FIVE spaces remaining.

Upcycle Eco-Ranger Invitation


Dear Eco-Ranger,

I trust you’ve had a good year. I’m excited to share with you that Upcycle have been invited to participate in Shambala 2015 for the fourth year in a row. This is an invitation to apply to be part of the team.

I’m only inviting people this year. No public promotion. This is not for everybody and it’s important our team is of the highest quality and understands what will be asked of them.

If you want to take part you need to complete the application form at the link below. If that is successful we’ll schedule a short skype call and then your place will be confirmed.

This year our remit as Eco-Rangers will involve a focus on INTERACTION and BEHAVIOUR CHANGE.

We will do this by:

  • Welcoming EVERY festival goer as they enter the site informing them of the recycling services on site. Handing out bin bags and communicating our message

  • Circulate the campsite targeting messy camps and engaging with them to change their behaviour. This can be TOUGH but its our job and we’re good at it.

  • Singing songs (Captain Planet Theme tune, There’s No Such Thing as Waste etc) in our Musical Recycled procession around the campsite

  • Awarding medals for ‘Captain Planets’ as part of a festival wide behaviour change initiative

  • Being part of the Green Wave on Monday morning into the campsite to ensure everybody is packed away as cleanly as possible.

  • Hosing the Cup Amnesty as punters are leaving collecting in the reusable cups.

You will be asked to work three six hour shifts over the weekend and you will be given one meal ticket per shift that you work.

You need to be available from Thursday 27th August for a team meeting at 9:00 (means arriving Wednesday night) until Monday 31st August at 16:00.You will be asked to put down a deposit of £150 that will be returned on successful completion of your shifts.

Please only apply if you can make the dates and times stated above.

Eco-Rangers. Shambala needs up. You are the heart and soul of Upcycle.

Lets do this.

Much Love,

Chris x

Apply at the link HERE


Captain Planet.1

Recruitment for Summer 2014 – Now Open!

Spring Greetings to all you wonderful Eco-Rangers out there.

Its here. The Recruitment for Eco-Rangers in 2014 is finally here.

This year we’ve updated ourselves and are using a super snazzy online application form. Please follow this link or click on Captain Planet below.

We are lined up for pumping summer at the following three fantastic festivals:

Cock and Bull (13h Thur 24 July – 18h Tues 29 July)

Off-Grid (13h Thur 7 Aug – 18h Tues 12 Aug)

and Shambala (13h Wed 20 Aug – 18h Mon 25 Aug)

So, it’s over to you. Please get your application in within one week. We’ll respond to all applications personally but we only have limited places available for each event.

We’re also looking for any Eco-Ranger interested in coming to Shambala to also be keen to volunteer at one of our other festivals. If you make this clear on your application form you will have a much greater chance at being part of the team.

Great! Good luck and see you in the fields soon.

Captain Planet

Dearest Eco-Rangers,


I trust this finds you well. Is anybody else feeling like this .. “Yes Yes Yes!! – Spring is on its way! Wahooo!”

Believe it or not its time to start looking towards the summer. Upcycle is going to be at three festivals this coming season.


Cock and Bull Festival on the 25 – 27 July.


Sunrise Off-Grid … visit their site here.


Shambala Festival! Yippeee!


To really make Upcycle take off this year we’re looking for one of you to take on the role of … Captain Planet, The Pink Eco-Ranger, La Estrela de Manha, Shakti or Shiva.


Starting now with the recruitment process and continuing to the end of the summer and beyond I am welcoming one of you into the Upcycle team.


It’ll be a hugely exciting role that’ll require skill, perseverance, patience and presence. The plan is that we find one Mega-Capitano Eco-Ranger Super-Delux who can lead the team at all three festivals. Amongst other things you will be responsible for:


  • sourcing and managing a team of about 16 volunteers
  • creating a schedule of work over the festival weekend
  • keeping your team on-task, motivated and happy
  • creating an inspirational and engaging environment around the Upcycle Free Shop
  • telling the story of Upcycle’s work through writing blog posts, news paper articles etc etc


You’ll receive guidance and support at all levels. I will personally work with you to coach you through the whole process from beginning to end. Taking this opportunity could be one of the best investments you’ve ever made in yourself.


You will learn:


  • excellent communication skills
  • tools for remaining enthusiastic and empowered
  • a personalised yoga and meditation practice to see you through the summer
  • the ins and out of the running of a small, eco-logically minded social enterprise
  • how to facilitate, hold a space, share openly and allow others to do the same
  • a whole host of upcycling techniques and ideas


As you’ll be receiving coaching from me there will also be plenty of time for your to explore your personal strengths, your joys and values, your drives and motivations. We’ll work together ensuring that you are in a position to implement these skills as best you can throughout the summer.


I’m looking for somebody who:

  • has good experience working at festivals and who is confident in their ability to see the work through to its completion
  • knows how to lead a team and has experience in this area
  • has a hacker mentality, is prepared to improvise, take decisions and motivate others
  • is passionate about reducing land-fill and encouraging others to do the same
  • has some experience in writing articles, telling stories or keeping a blog.


If you think this is for you then please contact me at and I’ll let you know about the application and interview procedure. Please also share the opportunity with anybody you think will be up to it.


Much love to you all,


Chris x

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ud logo

The Toolbox, United Diversity and The Great Turning.


The Toolbox and United Diversity – Taking part in the Great Turning.


United Diversity is a recently re-formed cooperative based in the UK. It’s the outcome of a great story of blood, sweat, tears, perseverance, enthusiasm, vision and passion.

The cooperative’s prospective members include a performing arts festival called Cloud Cuckoo Land, Permanent Cultures, a Permaculture based teaching collective, Upcycle, offering festival waste recycling solutions and Brake the Cycle which has the catchy strap line “Free wheeling to alternative ways of living through adventure.” For a full list of projects and their websites please go here.


In their own way all these parts of United Diversity are contributing to The Great Turning. This is a story of our time beautifully explained in Chris Johnstone’s book Active Hope.


In the story of the Great Turning,

what’s catching on is commitment to act for the sake of life on Earth

as well as the vision, courage, and solidarity to do so. -

Active Hope, p. 27


It’s a story that fills us all with power, positivity and presence. But story I do not mean a work of fiction, but rather a way of making sense of what is going on in the world around us.


Involving the emergence of new and creative human responses,

it is about the epochal transition from

an industrial society committed to economic growth to a life-sustaining society

committed to the healing and recovery of our world.

We call this story the Great Turning.

- Active Hope, p.5

In Active Hope Chris goes on to explain that there are two other stories unfolding at the same time. One is that of ‘Business as Usual’ and the other is ‘The Great Unravelling’. These stories are also ways of making sense of the world. Their titles give away the central plot. The important thing is that…

…there is no point in arguing about which of these stories is “right.”

All three are happening.

The question is which one we want to put our energy behind.

  • Active Hope, p.5


The Toolbox ( has been created to spread and share the story of the Great Turning through coaching and workshops. The Toolbox is a peer to peer coaching and workshop experience designed to serve people like yourself. People who are already taking part in the Great Turning in their own way. People who, I think, are brave, inspirational and I would like to work with.


Regular coaching conversations and the occasional workshop offer participants a professional, dynamic a resilient coaching relationship. Coaching helps you find clarity, and motivation, direction, enthusiasm and insight.


Coaching is an immensely powerful tool. It has changed my life profoundly. It has become something of a sacred space for me in which I can open, share, be vulnerable and truthful. A key element through a strong transformational period in my life.



As Deepa Awal explains, coaching creates space for internal shifts, changing perspectives and expanded world views. These conversations can ‘change us in a fundamental way, open up new possibilities, generate insight, shift a long-held emotion, change a belief, and, above all, connect us to something bigger than our individual selves.’ (

Let's start retelling our Story


There are a few coaching places with The Toolbox this February. Please e-mail me at for more information regarding this opportunity and to arrange an initial free conversation.


Not just a musician...

Shambala Music Video

Yeah Yeah!

Greetings to you all. I hope everybody is happy and well. Do you actually receive these e-mails? I’m not just sending them out into the ether…

If possible please respond.

Give me some news, where are you? What are you doing? What would be your dream come true?

Anywho… We’ve done it!! Yippeeeee!!!!! Its been a while coming but the Official 2013 Upcycle Shambala Music Video is here:

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Its been an adventure to get this video ready but it was well worth it. We’re really happy with the outcome and would appreciate it if you can spread and share far and wide.

A MASSIVE thank you to Maxi who directed and edited the video. And also to Craig and Oli who did the music and have made it sound so wonderful.

Also huge appreciation goes out to FORMIDABLE VEGETABLE SOUND SYSTEM for letting us use their song.



Not just a musician...

Sweet. Thats it for now. Enjoy the video and spread it as you can over the t’internet.

Much Love


Upcycled Band!

Mega Update


Allrighty!? Greetings huge fan base.


We hope you’ve had an excellent summer. What did you get up to? What are the lasting memories? What did you learn and who did you fall in love with?

Here are some highs and lows from Upcycle over the summer of 2013 and a brief look toward to the winter and onto the summer 2014.




The Campsite Clean-Up Carnival that we hosted at Shambala. Bumping into masshy-feeling drug munchers on Monday morning and singing songs with our Ukulele and recycled band to encourage them to pick up their waste!


Upcycled Band!

Sorting through the rubbish at Cock and Bull accompanied by Flo the Goat with her uncanny ability to pinpoint and consume the organic material.


Serious fancy dress.

Taking part in the final fine pick at Cloud Cuckoo Land – a highly enjoyable experience recognising the quality of the work we had achieved and the impact we had had on the farm to keep it so spotless.




Getting caught in the rain in Mud-Alley at Cock and Bull festival and having soaking feet while slipping around in the mud carrying hugs sacks of smelly rubbish.


Not having sufficient volunteers at Smugglers Festival so Mira had to work incredibly hard, mostly by herself and one or two others.


Leaving Shambala knowing it’ll be another year until a festival of that quality occurs again.


Winter 2013 (October 2013 – March 2014)


Exciting plans are looming. We are looking to consolidate the progress made over the years with Upcycle. We’ve developed an awesome system of waste management ensuring the highest possible composting, reuse or recycling rates (above 80% by volume at Cloud Cuckoo Land this year) combined with the optimal festival going experience for our volunteers.

This needs to continue. We will be seeking our UK’s most conscientious, small (below 1000) and ecologically minded festivals with the aim of providing them with our services.

Together with MoreBins we want to develop the equipment we’ve used and create signage that is informative and engaging.

We will continue to develop and research into ideas and solutions for ecologically and conscientious festivals and events.


We are currently looking to recruit for the following voluntary positions over the winter:


Festival Researcher


Creative Director

PR and Funding Champion


If you’re interested then send me an e-mail (chris(at) and I can send you over more info. These will be voluntary posts unless you can find funding yourself.


And for the Summer of 2014.


We are already excited about the next Cloud Cuckoo Land – set to form a new precedent for small festival culture world wide. And also the possibility of working at Shambala 2014 is getting us jumping around the bedrooms and bin bags.


We will earn more money to ensure our work can continue while being transparent with all you about how this money is spent.


We will take on more small festivals and encourage this culture to thrive in the harmonious and creative direction we are all hoping for.


We are also looking to recruit for various positions this coming summer. These will involve a ‘Festival Manager’ role who will be the Eco-Ranger in charge on site at each event. We also need volunteers to step up to a ‘Shift Supervisor’ role so that we can ensure the quality of work and experience is not diminished.

Fantastic, that is it for now. Thanks for reading. More news is coming. Please spread the word that we’re looking to recruit if you have a friend who you think will be interested.

Much love to you all,

Chris and all the Team.


Shambala – Musical Madness

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Oh Yes! Shambala here we come.  We’ve been busy making plans here at Upcycle.

The idea goes something like this –>

We’ll be making recycled instruments over the weekend and walking around the campsite and introducing ourselves to the festival goers.


Professionals this lot...



Then on Monday when all are packing down and going home we’ll be jazzing around the campsite merrily singing this song..

Awesome! We love this and are super excited.

While singing and dancing with our newly created instruments we’ll be helping campers clean up after themselves. Angelic.

Angelic Campers..


The mission is to keep the campsite beautiful and clean.

Lets see how many festival goers are humming this little number on their way home clutching a piece of ‘waste’..


Its Arrived…

Dearest Eco-Rangers.


For us the Festival Season is about to get under way. We’ve not started our tour yet but its nearly upon us. Heres to one final shout out to any budding Eco-Rangers out there. We have spaces reaming at these three Festivals:


Cock and Bull Festival — 25th – 29th July

Cloud Cuckoo Land — 31st July – 6th August

Smugglers Festival – 29th August – 2nd September

Working as an Eco-Ranger gives you a unique opportunity to experience UK festival culture at its best. We have an awesome core team, and we’ll be building on last year’s experience. Its a great time to join in, get your hands dirty and work to inspire a truly loving attitude towards our world.


We’re low on applications this year, I’m not sure why, but any help in spreading the message would be much appreciated. Please use facebook (, our website ( and twitter (@upcycleuk) as much as you can to spread the word.


Excellent. Thanks for your help in advance and I hope to see many of you over the summer.

Much love,


Chris x


Yum Yum!

Spring Update – Mountains of Rubbish

YES YEEES! Summer is here and Upcycle is hitting the road.

We’ve been working our little socks off at the ground breaking Building Man event this last May. We’ve focused on transforming a Mountain of Rubbish into a series of tire walls, seating areas, some crazy paving and a stair case. Its been brilliant work and we feel we’re learning a great deal.

Yum Yum!

Massive Respect to Marcus and Joe for creating such an inspirational experience. The story will be told for many years to come. Please see the website here:


Yeah Yeah Yeah! We build that!

In other news we’ve had our Indiegogo Funding Bid out for a few weeks now and the money is coming in… but extremely slowly. We appreciate that money is not easy for anybody at the moment so here is the alternative to sending us your dinero.


Volunteer for us!

Show your Love and Support for Upcycle by becoming an Eco-Ranger. On the 6th June we’re joining forces with ReJuice to put on a food waste banquet in east London and if you and your friends are around we’re looking for volunteers.


So that Saturday 8th June in Hackney Wick at one of London’s most creative dining experiences. Please get in touch with me ( or Holly ( if you’re interested. Here is the facebook invite.


And below is the call our for the summer tour. Please forward this part onto your buddies and spread the word. Places are filling up and teams are taking shape….

Inspire your Summer – Become an Eco-Ranger with Upcycle.


Upcycle are recruiting a crack team of Volunteers for their up and coming festival tour. Known as Eco-Rangers Upcycle volunteers are a powerful, moral and creative force spreading across the UK festival scene.


The aim of Upcycle is to:

to create a small festival culture in the UK that is ecologically harmonious,

where festival goers understand and participate fully in the onsite waste management system,

and where the environment is left more beautiful than before the festival.


As an Eco-Ranger you will be granted Free Entry to your chosen festival, two meals per day and the opportunity to work in an dynamic and creative festival project.

You will be responsible for the setup, stocking and running of a Free Shop, together we will also create and implement a successful recycling policy for our event. You will work three 6 hour shifts over a festival weekend.


Our current festival tour:


Cock and Bull Festival — 25th – 29th July

Cloud Cuckoo Land — 31st July – 6th August

Shambala — 22nd – 26th August

Smugglers Festival – 29th August – 2nd September

At each event we will have a team of between 15 and 20 volunteers. Applications are open but will close at the end of May. Tell your buddies, phone your friends. This is an opportunity not to be missed.


Pleas see here for all the info you need:


Much Love and Respect to you all,


Yours, Chris (



Building Man! 2 – 25th May – Volunteers Needed

Greetings Eco-Rangers!

I hope this finds you all super well. Two exciting projects we would like to give the big ones to this week.

Firstly the fantastic Break the Cycle.

Congratulations! 21 fearless travellers recently completed the legendary Land’s End to John O’Groats cycle ride. Camping in snow, swimming in freezing rivers and braving sand storms. What an adventure it was. And as if the 1000 mile bike ride wasn’t enough they’ve also been raising money for Building Man…


and Secondly: Building Man

The cycle ride is a fundraiser for the innovative Building Man project that will be happening at Bodenahm Manor during May. We’re onsite from the 2nd to the 25th May and are looking for volunteers to help create this event.

All the information is on the website.

And please remember our volunteer applications are open for Upcycle’s summer tour. Please see here for more information. We’ll close applications at the end of May so not long left. Places are filling up fast so get yer applications in…

Much Love to you all.

Chris x


Our Funding Bid…

Yes Yes. Us again. Forgot to pu this in the last post but we’ve just launched our funding bid for this summer. Please see our Indigogo bid below and support us if you can.