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Townhead aerial view

The Townhead Collective in the North of England is a group of twenty men and women who live off the grid in comfort on very little money.

This video shows one of the residents Piet Defoe explain exactly how to make a reliable hot water system out of an old radiator painted black,and a few lengths of pipe.

Please send links to other off-grid videos to news@off-grid.net

The Townhead/Lifespan website explains the current court battle to avoid eviction by a former resident.

Buy our book - OFF THE GRID - a tour of American off-grid places and people written by Nick Rosen, editor of the off-grid.net web site

6 Responses to “Solar hot water for pennies”

  1. faythe

    It’s just a thought…………why not build a storage shed with some of those “creative” treasures that are lying around. My father was a farmer and saved ……..well, every nut, bolt, bottle, wood, etc in a huge shed out back. And it was organized right down to the last nail so he could find it when he needed it and his home was a home, not an eyesore.

    Reply
  2. Carl watson

    Living off grid often goes hand in hand with avoiding waste whether that is conserving water, electricity or by not throwing out materials which could be of future use, granted you don’t need to scatter it about to look like a junkyard but not everyone has space to store things out of sight, also many of these off grid projects evolve over a period of years, if you were having building work done on a conventional house over this sort of time period on a tight budget chances are the surroundings would be similar, I applaud these people for recycling materials rather than subscribing to today’s throw away society

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  3. philip korte

    I love the quote (without raw materials one cannot be creative ) my wife and i live in the high desrt of AZ. off the grid ,on our ranch called OFF THE MAP , my wife is a fifth gen. scottish potter and i build custom motorcycles. I have in the last three years collected materials by tearing down old and dangerous structures utilizing recycled materials, and am in the process of building a bottle wall . materials all recycled , could not do that without stuuf in the yard .

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  4. Don

    Without raw materials one cannot be creative. Without being creative one has trouble sustaining a simple life. It is not coincidence that creative people with sustainable lifestyles live in such surrounding. Boring people have tidy yards.

    My son is extremely creative – many US folks will buy his product this year – but he early on told me how much easier he found it inventing stuff in our yard – he had “stuff” to work with.

    eg: Why is the British TV show “Junk Yard Challenge” set in junkyards?

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  5. Vee Soar

    too true – what is it about those who go down the simple living route which seems to require that their surroundings look like a junk yard . Is there some unwritten rule that you cannot live simply and have tidy, pleasant surroundings ?
    Of course I have to say that there are an awful lot of people who are NOT off grid who live in a tip; but if off gridders do so, as you say, it give this lifestyle a bad image

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  6. Jason Smith

    It is unfortunate that so many videos of off grid locations are always scattered with excess “supplies” lying around. I think for the movement this can really hurt us, not sure, but I wonder if municipalities look only see heath and public safety violations?

    Reply

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