I attended my first straw bale course in 2005 in Norfolk. I was already a convert before I turned up and the course confirmed all of my hopes. After the course all I had to do then was find a project so I could practise and practise what I learnt.
I was lucky enough to find an organisation that was prepared to put their trust in my enthusiasm and I was offered the role of project managing a straw bale community building at Hackney City Farm. Barbara’s then company, Amazon Nails, provided design consultancy and delivered practical courses throughout the project. I soaked in as much knowledge from this process as possible and started volunteering for amazonails in any way I could.
I completed the amazonails ambassador training course in straw bale building in 2007 and came to work for them full time in 2008.
Before getting into construction I was working in environmental education for children and adults and running awareness raising campaigns. I love teaching the straw bale building courses as much as doing the building myself. I really enjoy the team that is created as the days goes by, the ah ha! moments that ripple around the group at each of the different stages of the build and sharing the absolute joy of creating something strong and beautiful.
I now run a small business of my own (www.emmaappleton.co.uk) and I am associate teacher and builder for Straw Works. I am training in carpentry and learning to draw.