The Children's Fire

The Children’s Fire

With Mac Macartney and special guests Nigel Shaw, Tommy Crawford & Bethan Lloyd

This is a course for all those who are ready to make change in the world.

What will you pledge for the future of our children?

Join us for this 5 day immersion into the ancient teachings of our land as you explore what change you are ready to make now.


16th June - 21st June The Children's Fire Book Now

Times: 6 pm Sun. 16th – 4 pm Fri. 21st June

Fee: £663

Limited bursary places are available at £496 on application.

The Children's Fire

Mac Macartney’s new book, ‘The Children’s Fire, heart song of a people’ was published last year. The ethos of the Children’s Fire has been the beating heart of Embercombe since its inception, and we’re now offering this 5-day deep immersion into the meaning and implications of this ancient teaching.

While we all contribute to the wider story of society, the Children’s Fire pledge begins with the individual. What would it mean if you were to make a pledge to the protection and wellbeing of our children and the young of all species?

In what way can you make this pledge?

This is an opportunity to find out.

Join Mac, founder of Embercombe and author of The Children’s Fire, as he brings together the wisdom, knowledge, processes and practices from the indigenous teachings that have underpinned the work of Embercombe from the outset, to help you uncover your personal pledge, waiting to be made.

Helped by the poets, musicians and practitioners of this land, this week will be about sharing, reflecting, exploring and trying out some of the different ways in which we can offer ourselves to the task of making change in the world – in our lives and with each other.

Some of the questions we will be asking ourselves:

  • How do we draw on the ancient, ancestral wisdom, and make it relevant for the world of today?
  • What guidance can we find from other wisdom traditions relevant to our own context and time?
  • How do we find our way to a sense of reverence and sacredness in our lives?
  • What does it mean to belong and find deep connection to life?

What You Can Expect

Immersed in a small group, you will explore together what it might mean to be Keepers of the Children’s Fire.
Spend time walking on the wild moor, once inhabited by ancestors who knew the power of the fire.
Learn new practices and receive gifts – new ways of thinking and doing – from special guests and guides.
Sit in a sharing council of friends, and take up the invitation to make a pledge. For the future of all children.


Mac Macartney

In 1999 Mac founded Embercombe. At which time he was also the founder and CEO of a leadership consultancy for corporate executives operating internationally between 1989-2005. Over a period of twenty years Mac was mentored and coached by a group of Native American teachers. During this training and ever since he has attempted to bring two worlds together – an ancient world view that emphasises relationship, interdependence, and reverence for life with the huge challenges and equally huge opportunities of the 21st Century. You can find out more about Mac’s work here.

Mac Macartney

Tommy Crawford

Tommy Crawford is a Poet, Storyteller, and Founder and Creative Director of the international mischief-making organisation, Dancing Fox. Combining his love for mythology, street art and improv theatre, Tommy works with artists and activists around the world to create “beautiful disruptions” — moments where the wonder of the world can flood in, and the bubbling magic that lives inside each of us can pour out.

He has curated and led workshops in Lebanon, Brazil, China, India, Indonesia and across Europe and the USA, and his poetry has been featured in galleries in London, exhibitions in New Delhi and wheat-pasted by artists as love-notes from the streets of Belfast to the crumbling temples of Sri Lanka.

His work is deeply inspired by the year he spent sitting at the feet of wisdom-keepers from different Indigenous Peoples from around the world, Islamic mysticism and poetry, and the wild and sensuous beauty of the British Isles.

Tommy Crawford

Nigel Shaw

Nigel Shaw has produced a highly regarded and diverse collection of recordings over the last 30 years. His gentle and soul-filled instrumental works, and ability to infuse his music with a powerful yearning for wild nature, have come to define his unique approach to sacred sound. Classic albums such as The River and Requiem: Well of Souls continue to be significant and widely appreciated decades after their initial release. More recently he has composed a series of albums that honour the sweet and raw ancient moorland landscape: Dartmoor Journey, Dartmoor Roundhouse and Dartmoor Symphony, which received its orchestral world premiere in 2010. He has created and directed strong, musically dynamic projects with the albums Ancestors (inspired by the songs of the indigenous people of the Siberian Arctic) and Exile (which honours the human experience of being displaced from home and tribe). His work has encompassed wilder strands of dance music as co-founder of the festival bands Riven and Global. He also performs with Bamboo Cedar Oak, a brotherhood of master flute players that also includes Guillermo Martinez (USA) & Hiroki Okano (Japan).

Nigel Shaw

Bethan Lloyd

From Theology and Religious Studies at Cambridge to living with the Pataxo indigenous tribe in Brazil, Bethan has been exploring the channeling of voice on and off stage since her childhood in Wales.

Her work is inspired by her native tradition, where the bards and druids would go into ‘Awen’, a trance that allowed them to connect to the other world and bring back knowledge for the benefit of their people. Her exploration has included training as a classical singer and learning with both shamans, masters, and the wordless ancient teachings of the natural world.

Her most recent retreat was a month in solitude with only her voice overlooking the sacred Island Ynys Enlli, and she is currently teaching Wild Voice workshops across Europe. 

Upcoming Dates & Booking

16th June - 21st June The Children's Fire Book Now

We aim for all of our courses to be as inclusive and accessible as possible – please contact us for information on paying in installments.  

There are also a limited number of bursary places available for this course at £496 on application.

If you have any questions please call +44 (0) 1647 252 983 or email

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