Bergerac Build Festival 2020

Calling all builders, diggers and dreamers!

This August, help us transform an underloved farmhouse into a bustling community hub in the beautiful south of France. Moments from the acclaimed Buddhist monastery Plum Village, our Bergerac hub will become a home for the community, complete with accomodation, event space, and garden. But we need your help!

Between Monday 3rd – Sunday 30th August 2020, we will refurbish our newest coliving Hub at the beautiful Le Petit Bois Matin, near Bergerac, France. 

The aim is to strip back the walls to their original stone. At the moment, they’re covered in concrete, and we want to restore them to their natural beauty. 

Beyond that, there are plans to vivify the garden and renovate the surrounding spaces. We are seeking volunteers to help us knock down walls and ceilings, paint and sand floors, and bring the garden back to life. We also can’t wait to meet new people, make meaningful connections, and have an unforgettable month!

WHEN: Monday 3rd – Sunday 30th August 2020. Come for as little or as long as you want!

WHERE: Life Itself Bergerac Hub, Thenac, France 24240 (Map)

BOOK: The festival is free to attend. We need you to register so we have a sense of numbers for catering:

FAQs: COVID 19 guidance, nearest supermarkets, bike hire and more!

How to find us


  • Bergerac: 20 minutes 
  • Bordeaux: 1h 40 minutes
  • Plum Village (nearby Buddhist monastery): 5 minute drive, 25 minute walk


  • Bergerac airport: British Airways, Ryanair, Flybe, Jet2
  • Bordeaux airport: all major airlines 

Train: Bordeaux St Jean – Bergerac: 1hr 15mins, every hour 

Taxi: It is a 20 minute taxi ride from Bergerac to the Hub.

Bike: Check out the Freewheeling France site for information on routes


Le Petit Bois Martin map


You can arrive anytime between Monday 3rd August and Sunday 30th August 2020 and stay for as long as you can. There is flexibility so when you register please let us know how long you will stay for. 

Once you arrive, we’ll sit down to eat together, followed by a general orientation and briefing for everyone involved. This will also be your first opportunity to meet and greet your co-builders!

What you will need:

We will have rotating teams to share the roles of cooking, cleaning, and fun making.

You will need: 

  • Sleeping bags 
  • Towel
  • Tough boots 
  • Sun screen (!) 
  • Hats 
  • Plates, cups, cutlery for eating and drinking with 
  • Snacks 
  • Tools you think will help

What we will provide:

  • Breakfast, lunch and dinner 
  • Showers
  • Hula hoops
  • Some tools (see tool library below) 
  • Tents 

More information:

Life Itself will provide meals and a camping ground (including showers) for your stay. We will all work on-site for 4 hours a day. The rest of the day is yours to make new friends, explore the area, and have fun.

If you have tools and are up for bringing them, then please do and record them in the Tool Library here on this sheet:  Life Itself | Build Schedule

Please bring sunscreen, light clothing, and a hat for the sun. Also bring sensible clothing with warm layers for the evenings and waterproofs. A good pair of boots and plenty of socks is always a good idea.

Creche facilities will need to be self-organised by those who require them.

Event design 

The Life Itself team will be present throughout the month to guide us on the plans for refurbishments and getting creative. 

There’ll be a daily plenary session each morning to check-in and organise ourselves. In addition to our core builds, there will be plenty of time to arrange some self-organised workshops.

We’ll sit down together for three wholesome meals per day. Building and workshops will be scheduled throughout the morning depending on the heat. You’ll get a site tour once on site, including campsite, event/build site, and meeting space.

Please bring your ‘Do-It-Yourself Festival Survival Kit’ including pint/half pint cup (preferably non-glass), knife/fork/spoon, plate or bowl or both, and anything else that will help keep your impact on Bergerac’s flora and fauna low. 

Each volunteer will participate in our shared kitchen throughout the event. This is a core part of our programme, and if you don’t have experience already, will be a great way to learn how to cook for your community.


This is a low budget pilot scheme, and as such we’re unable to take every precaution which we’d otherwise insist upon. During this co-build process, it is essential that everyone be vigilant in the interests of their own safety and that of others.

To be clear, you are responsible for yourself during your stay, as a co-creative participant in a shared project. There is no legal structure yet established to limit liability, with Bergerac Build Festival genuinely self-organised by a core crew of committed volunteers. 

Share with your friends and bring them!

Please share the link to your networks, friends and families to build with them and share an adventure with purpose this summer!

Please don’t hesitate to get in touch with Petronella ([email protected]) with questions or suggestions.