tim bowles - campwell founder
After 5 generations on the family farm, Tim broke with family tradition and moved to London and then Hong Kong for more exciting and rewarding work in advertising and then wine sales.
However, as he experienced the world outside becoming more and more connected, it seemed to become increasingly disconnected, lonely and stressful.
So, he headed back home in search of a better life.
In rebuilding a new life on the family farm; reconnection with nature and simple living became the basis for his recovery and new enterprise, “The Farm Camp” in 2013 (now “Campwell farm”). This off-grid eco camp was created to inspire people to live more real, balanced and simpler lives. Adventures away from screens, reconnecting with others, themselves and our natural environment. He believes our future health and the health of our planet is all about this re-connection.
Since growing a strong bond with Tim Gatfield and Cherry Wood since 2013, the opportunity arose to take it on and rebrand as ‘Campwell woods’ in 2020 with a similar ethos and even wilder vibes to ‘Campwell farm’ .
With the arrival of his daughter ‘Minnie’ in 2019, the future looks wild all round.
tim gatfield - cherry wood founder
Tim Gatfield first became involved with green woodwork in 2000, having worked as a cabinet maker for 12 years. With a longtime interest in conservation, rural and craft skills, and a more sustainable way of life, Tim fulfilled his dream of owning his own woodland when he purchased Cherry Wood in 2005 with the intention of managing the wood and setting up a school to teach green woodworking skills to others, and pass on the pleasure of living and working in the woods. A previous career in the army had given him valuable knowledge of bushcraft and living outdoors, which he could pass on to his students.
Over the following 14 years the “Cherry Wood Project” has run some 350+ courses with nearly 3000 students and many hundreds of school children’s activity days. Many, many volunteers have helped to restore the wood back to a coppice rotation and build the sustainable structures using materials from the wood. The adjective most used by visitors and participants alike is ‘inspirational’ and indeed many have found their time at Cherry Wood to be life-changing. In 2018 it was rated in the “10 of the Best Creative Retreats in UK and Europe.”
Tim will now split his time between Cherry Wood and Devon. Cherry Wood is now called Campwell Woods and run by Tim Bowles with a similar ethos and it remains largely unchanged.
becky bowles - campwell farm bookings and shepherdess
Becky is Tim’s sister and helps keep the camp running smoothly. She wears many hats, helping with the farm cottages, sheep and the camp. Now she has a young son, Ruben, she tries to juggle alot less.
Passionate about outdoor activities, she runs our sheep herding activity, creative workshops and bush craft sessions. She also helps in the office, managing bookings and keeping guests happy.
pam waight - project manager
Pam joined the team at the farm camp in 2018 being another great recruit from Winsley village. She too was keen to be outdoors, and help prepare our spaces for arrivals after a long career in the events industry. Now, she has stepped up as project manager for events and guest experiences. Her 2 sons, Angus and Campbell are energetic young lads who come to help at the camps when things are busy.