ongoing works….


…so the kitchen is slowly taking shape thanks to the amazing and generous work of Edek and Simon who are there most days engaged in this art form that is Plumbing; i’m mesmerised at their skill and so grateful for their good disposition and spirits.

…and the outdoors cob oven has received it’s final smooth coat as well! made of clay, sand and wheat “glue” (cooked flour and water). We did it last saturday on another session of collective fun; Raju, Renee, Toby, Ken, Tony, David, Pilar and Renee’s children were there with hot cups of tea, cold toes and good laughs




making the cob base with sand and clay








The prepared cob oven awaits….






Raju making the wheat paste for the render






Ken putting the render on like plaster using a float




Renee mixing up the render wetter with a shovel




David securing the loose fire bricks with cob mixture



smoothing the render around the door way so the door fits



Raju smoothing the render down




The finished smoothed render final layer!


Hooray we are nearly done!


First fire

Another cob oven building session and we are getting close…

As you know the hornbeam bakers’ collective is getting their new premises ready at the Blackhorse Workshop, a warehouse in an industrial estate in Walthamstow that is about to become a community space for artists, builders, chefs and community bakers.

Today Ken, pilar and Simon opened the door of the cob oven and removed the sand -mold- from the insideImageImageImage

We had to wear hard hats because there were other works taking place… ImageImageImage

…and we look like proper builders

It was a relief that the structure of the oven didn’t collapse when we took the sand out. Ken had brought the tools and did most of the hard work, his help and enthusiasm are being of great value.

We are doing this work with very little economic resources, we are fundraising right now as we get the work done and try to find cheap equipment. Members of the collective and supporters are putting a great amount of hours and creativity into bringing this new phase of the collective into birth… Sometimes it feels to me that it is too big, we can’t make it, we’re not ready… and today I feel we can, not alone but with the help of our friends and supporters, by making each step of the way a community adventure, by trusting that together we will find creative solutions as we keep developing our ability to work and organise together.

The oven didn’t collapse, we gathered a little bit of kindling and in the middle of this industrial state, in this crisp, sunny autumn day we lit a flame in the hearth for the first time…

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…wishing a great abundance of loaves and  nourishment for the years to come *


Priory Court Community Clean Up Event 2 Nov 2013





Raju from the Hornbeam Bakers Collective held a workshop for the ‘Community Clean Up’ event at Priory Court Community Centre.

The aim of the day was to bring the Community together to help with lots of planned activities around reuse, recycling and skills sharing (whilst saving money) in and around the Community Centre at Priory Court.  There were lots of indoor and outdoor activities with lots of hungry people at lunchtime, including the mayor Nadeem Ali and local residents, who ate bread made by Raju and the bread making participants as well as wholesome soup made by Ruth from the Hornbeam Cafe,

We also handed out recipes with what to do with left over bread. Please email us if you would like a copy!

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New venue!! and call out for workshop leaders

As many of you know already, the Hornbeam Bakers’ Collective has a new venue; we are very excited about these new developments and are hoping the new space will become a vibrant community resource.

From january we will be partially operating from there; we doubt the kitchen will be fully fitted by then but we can start using the workshop space for other kind of classes and events.

So please read below, pass this mesage around to your contacts and get in touch if you would like to offer a workshop, we would love to hear from you.


Best wishes,


pilar on behalf of the Hornbeam Bakers



Workshop Programme Call Out Jan – Mar 2014:


The Hornbeam Bakers Collective are seeking workshop practioners who can lead non-baking workshops from Jan – Mar 2014. Please submit a short proposal of what you would like to run as a session, availability and what would requirements you would need in detail. We are looking specifically for any workshops that can empower individuals and the communities we live in. Anything from yoga, healing and health focused, environmental, making various foods, self empowerment, education, arts, craft or skill sharing and more!


Our ethos at the collective is too keep workshop costs low so that they are made more accessible. The fee for the workshops will therefore reflect this at £100 for leading a 3-4 hr session to include costs of materials (*shorter sessions will have a reduced fee). The rest of the costs will go towards the collective to be put back into our community project and for administration and hire of venue. We can provide some equipment but would prefer if facilitators can provide their own and/or are using minimal resources.


We are seeking facilitators who are either qualified to teach and/or have good experience, and can provide references and any appropriate certification.


Please send submissions to by 15 Nov 2013