founders in order of joining

I am looking for a lot of men who have an infinite capacity to not know what can't be done.

Henry Ford


Ashley Dobbs

From the beginning of his business career Ashley has undertaken ambitious projects. At 22 he raised £0.5 million to convert Flanesford Priory, a 14th century monastery, ancient monument and grade one listed building into 17 holiday cottages. This won a Civic Trust Award and the judges commented: “This is a spectacular rescue seemingly against all odds. A long fight and two public enquiries later the sensitive and imaginative conversion is a tribute to its owner.”

He went on to undertake developments in Europe and the United States.

In parallel with these commercial activities,Ashley was instrumental in introducing teleworking telecentres to the UK and was founding Chairman of the Telework Association. (A telecentre is a community building with IT equipment that locals can use to learn and work in.) Since the Association’s foundation the number of teleworkers has grown in the UK from two thousand to two million and the number of telecentres has grown from zero to two thousand. Ashley has blended philanthropic interests with his commercial business to create developments known as televillages. A televillage is a combined residential and workspace development that enables the residents to walk to work rather than commute. All the homes and workspaces within a televillage are linked to a fibre optic network (intranet) which links directly to the Internet. A televillage is an adaptation of the tried and tested institution of the village, being a place where people both live and work. It is as much a psychological concept as a technical invention, which is founded on two things that are unlikely to change:

  1. BulletTechnology, which will make it increasingly easier and cheaper to work remotely

  1. BulletPeople need people

Green Cities will be a natural progression from these projects which were groundbreaking in their environmental approach.

Nicholas Browne

Having been educated at Repton School and Cambridge University, Nicholas has taught, researched and practised Architecture since 1975.

Experience of major housing programmes in Gwent, Milton Keynes and Warrington was gained while an associate at MacCormac & Jamieson. During the same period a project for a new Arts faculty at Bristol University and a Hall of residence for Worcester College, Oxford were completed. Other work included a Head Office and the building of a school for the disadvantaged in Hertfordshire.

Since establishing his own firm in 1983 a wide range of commissions have been undertaken,ranging from

  1. Bulletsustainable housing projects in Kent

  1. Bulletrestoration and refurbishment of listed


  1. Bullethead offices for public companies

  1. Bulletcompetition winning design for a

crematorium and a landscape for


  1. Bulletdepartment store in Tokyo

  1. Bulletfilm production studio and offices

  1. Bulletapartments in Buenos Aires

In parallel with engaging in the art of making buildings, teaching posts have been held at different universities, including Cambridge University and the University of North London, at both degree and diploma levels.

Permeating both the academic and the practical realms of a career in Architecture has been an abiding interest in the relationship between landscape and the built environment.

James Skinner

After being educated at Eton College, Oxford University and Florence University, James Skinner spent the early part of his career in Africa. As a journalist in Africa he wrote mainly for the Observer and the Economist, before becoming the representative of the Economist Intelligence Unit in the Indian Ocean area, based in Dar es Salaam. Later he was responsible for managing and developing the commercial investments of the Tanzanian Government with more than 70 businesses in his care. With his own company James Skinner went on to create a range of prestigious hotels in Africa and the Middle East before returning to London. He stood for both the Westminster and European Parliaments as a

Liberal Democrat in London, where he now lives. As well as being a pragmatic businessman with a wide range of practical experience in property and other creative and innovative business developments, he is multi-lingual and has also been involved with several influential think-tanks.

James Skinner has acted as a catalyst for a number of major projects with an environmental emphasis.  He is currently a Founder Trustee of the New Economics Foundation and of the Elm Farm Research Centre, the leading organic farming institution in the UK.

Tim Smit KBE CBE

Tim is famous for his work on the 'Lost Gardens of Heligan' and the Eden Project, both in Cornwall, England.

Born in Scheveningen, he was educated at Cranbrook School, Kent, in England, and studied archaeology and anthropology at Durham. He worked as an archaeologist before taking an unexpected leap into the music business, working as both a song-writer and producer receiving seven platinum and gold discs.

In 1987 he moved with his family to Cornwall and became involved with Rob Poole, John Nelson and Heligan. During his time at Heligan, Smit wrote a popular book about the project.

Later he started the Eden Project, near St Austell, an £80 million initiative to build three transparent biomes in an old china clay pit. The biomes contain different eco-climates loosely based on the different climates found throughout the world - tropical jungle, temperate, and desert. Eden professes to educate people about environmental matters and encourages a greater understanding and empathy with these matters.

He was awarded the CBE in the 2002 New Years Honours List, and an Honorary Knighthood in 2011. In 2006 he was awarded an honorary Doctor of Design degree by the University of the West of England "in recognition of his outstanding achievements in promoting the understanding and practise of the responsible management of the vital relationship between plants, people and resources, which have made a major contribution regionally, nationally and internationally to sustainable development, tourism, architecture and landscape architecture".

Tim Smit has recently become a Social Enterprise Ambassador. Social enterprises use a business to address a social or environmental need. To find out more about Social Enterprise Ambassadors and the work they do, visit the Social Enterprise Ambassadors website.The Social Enterprise Ambassadors programme is led by the Social Enterprise Coalition and is supported by the Office of the Third Sector.

"Mark Twain once famously said; "that reasonable men bend themselves to the ways of the world therefore only unreasonable men can change it." It is time to make the unreasonable, reasonable.

Tim Smit talking about the Green Cities Foundation

Lucy Blythe  CEO Kew Foundation

Estelle Myers

Dieter Horstmann

Jim Bevervley

James Lyon

Jason Klumb

Wendy Dobbs

Dr Horace Dobbs International Dolphin Watch

Oliver Dobbs

Chloe Dobbs

Simon Berry

Jenny Colley

Hannah Emery-Wright

David Homes

Jasmine Karamzadeh

Hanu Maki

Katerina Okhonko

Jude Allen

Karmyn Ayn

Hester Joubert

Jason Tompkins

Regan Duggan

Andre Crummy

Blue Smith

Kellie Turner

Emily Elizabeth Dixon

Keith Ralfs

Renshaw Watts

Ginger Gilmore Ginger Art

Prof Richard Green University of London

Andrew Parker Dolphcom

Julia Bell

Leonardo Spohn

Glyn Maddocks

Max Newbert

Jason Vesey

Erika Klement

Chris Bryce

Kristy-Leigh Deacon-Stock

Sarah Lindblom

Alvro Peralta

Steve Hussein Bremner

Scott Kelly

James Holt

Tula Baasan

Mathew Ball

Andreane Dube-Levesque

Carol Vickers

Jason Schlackl

Paola Levet

Marion Young

Peter Vickers

Amber Patricia

Elizabeth Metuzals

Morgen Eckert

Kristi Buckland

Bonghi Sebsca

Binnie Barnacle

Terri Foyel

Googol Plex

Ryan Hansen

Lawren Hyder

Justin Best

Martin Macnutt

Mateusz Galysz

Carly Tennant

Shannon Stashewsky

Sarah Rose

Doug Makaroff

Lex Felix Klardie

Steven Ranger

Chalisa Gonzalez Balonos

Karyne Bailey

Thomas Heddle

Benjamin Weller

Rosy Farias

Zoe Ranger

Roger Dowker

Danno Ford

Michelle Nadon

Aprille Leal

Ann Smith

Andrew Marchand

Lisa Wright-Wick

Andreane Dube-Levesque

Sophie Donpineo

Julia Craik

Justin Phillips

Gem Ingram

Joan Barton

Ryan Wilson

Richard Pearson

James Henry

Nigel Catterson

Mark Edlund-Plater

Nigel Catterson

Kimberley Jones

Jacqueline Wood

Sally Hall

Keith Hall

Charlie Guidal

Charles O’Malley

Vera Avds

Namita Caen

Robbie Burgess

Sylvia  Albrighton

Francesca Gore

Tim Shaw

Prem Yari

Maria Von Kohler

Lesley Ferguson

Eric Mueller

Gary Clarke

Gavin Claxton

Ben Ellis

Rhiannon Belcher

Sarah Williams

Lindze Roy

Mariana Civeria Ceron

Alice Sharp

Eddie Green

Barnaby Green

Allan Ferguson

John Ryna

Richard Preddy

Fran Ota

Heather Wilkinson

James Shaw

Alan Avans

Laurent Nutta

Gareth Strangemore-Jones

Robert Rubinstein

Chris Cook

Bitna Seo

Adela Pickles

Peter Story

Omar Salem

David Kelly

Lynn Cohoe

Sherry Coutu

Paul Gibbons

Les Rvans

David Price

William Craven

Thomas Graham

Sair Ra

Dana- Lee Smirin

Sagar Shah

Oliver Karius

Mike Zeidler

Matt Dowse

Tanya Skillen

Guy Anderson

Apologies to those that have become Founders but whose names do not yet appear.


Ashley created the world’s first televillage in Crickhowell which lies in the Brecon Beacons National Park. The scheme won the Royal Town Planning Institute award for Innovative Sustainable Housing Development, with the following citation:

Sustainable development, however

defined, is an objective that most planning authorities profess through their policies. It is not often achieved in practice as effectively as at the Crickhowell Televillage, where the principles of sustainability underpin the entire development.

The result is a unique and well-designed housing development in a new village form. The planning authority regards this as a “flagship” development, providing a benchmark for other residential developments in the National Park.

Achieved the holy grail of town planning”.

A major research project led to the proposal for a national strategy for an integrated forest policy in the UK with a network of processing industries geared to produce material for local markets, including the building industry. This new approach included a planting programme of permanent rotation, thus avoiding the scars of clear felling with shelter belts created as part of housing layout and productive farm land.

The underlying philosophy continues to inform both academic and real programmes including “Greening the City”, run as a diploma project at the University of North London, and “Terra Lanka” a program of regeneration through agro-tourism and sustainable environments in Sri Lanka.

As the owner of Bristol Electric Railbus he is currently working on the introduction of a zero-emission public transport system known as Ultra Light Rail (ULR) by developing new fuel cell powered trams and inaugurating the first ULR tram service in Bristol, where he also founded the Bristol Urban Village


“Eden” The book by Tim - If this book doesn't inspire you to aim higher and better, then nothing will.  Amazon review

“Arrival “By our 100th Founder Kimberley Jones

Verge of Extinction by Jasmine Karamzadeh