Ailsa Holmes
Ailsa has a degree in Social Sciences and Arts from Manchester University, and has worked abroad coordinating a variety of creative projects. In Manchester, she has had experience in community arts working with MIA and Black Labrador and coordinating freelance festivals.

She has a great interest in environmental self- build projects and co- founded Powwow as a way to open up and disseminate knowledge about green building issues to a wider audience.


Richard Howarth
Richard Howarth - Richard graduated in Physics at the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology in 1997, and followed a common path into a career as a computer programmer. However he failed to find this fulfilling and after a period travelling returned to work in the social enterprise sector, more in line with his long held ecological interests and beliefs. He worked for the successful social enterprise Fairfield Materials Management which processes the waste from Manchester's huge Smithfield Market and produces compost from it, and now has a varied role with the environmental charity MERCi at Bridge 5 Mill, "Manchester's Greenest Building".

Elizabeth Mutch
Liz has eight years experience in marketing and public relations across a range of sectors from museums, heritage and interiors to waste management and the hospitality industry. She has a degree and MA in Art History.

An experienced journalist, she has a regular column in the Manchester Evening News and has written environmental, travel and interior design features for a range of publications. Liz has a keen interest in sustainable housing and has attended self build courses and events nationwide. She is a dedicated recycler and has experience in marketing recycling-awareness and education projects across the private and public sector.

In her current position as account Manager for ethical communications company, Current Creative Concern her work includes managing the media campaign for Defra's New Technologies in Waste project; promoting the work of the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation in both specialist and national media, working with Recycling Action Yorkshire to develop a brand and communications strategy and co-ordinating the PR for RENEW, the Northwest's regional centre of excellence. She has recently added the Association for Environmentally Concious Building to her portfolio.

Liz also voluntarily assists the charity Vision Africa with the production of a newsletter and promotional material, and promotes the work of sustainable tourism through the North Andaman Tsunami Relief Fund.

Jon Walker
Jon is a conservation ecologist who specialises in tropical rain forest ecology. Jon has an MSc in behavioural ecology and gained his doctorate in 2004 after two years research on the fruit-ecology and conservation of fruit-eating birds on Indonesian island of Sulawesi. Jon has also organised and led research projects to the Indonesian island of Sumba and to the cloud forests of Ecuador and worked on a turtle conservation project in Europe. In the UK he has worked for environmental charities and has been an associate lecturer at Manchester Metropolitan University. Most recently, he has Been working alongside economists on a sustainable agriculture project at the University of Manchester. Jon is a keen wood carver and very interested in environmental arts.

Chris Walsh
Chris is a founding member and chairperson of MERCi, one of Manchester's leading environmental charities. He is also a co-founder and secretary of Fairfield Materials Management and an active member of the wider Fairfield group of social enterprises engaged in both commercial composting and awareness raising around composting, gardening and healthy food. Chris is a co-founder of Manchester Progressive Enterprise Network (MPEN), a network of over fifty social enterprises, community businesses and workers co-operatives. He is also a co-founder and the Initiation Worker for Manchester Social Enterprise Forum (MSEF) of over 20 support agencies for the social Enterprise sector in Manchester. Chris is also working with others to establish individual social enterprises and charities including RTN Timber - a timber reclamation company and MERCi's Fruit & Veg Van delivering fresh fruit to East Manchester.