Richard Higgins Biography
Previous to the developent of the HH-2 Horticultural System Richard renovated and built several properties starting with the acquisition from the Redundant Churches Fund and subsequent development of St. Swinthuns Hall Gallery in the City centre of Worcester. He attained planning permission and complied with the upgrade from Listed grade III to Listed grade II – a building of excepsional interest for this unique Georgian building. installing a mezzanine floor with spiral staircase and the excavation and conversion of the previously undiscovered mediaeval cellars into a fully functioning restaurant. He opened and managed Worcester’s first Vegetarain restaurant winning acclaims in the National Good Food Guide. It is now an Italian restaurant.
Permaculture and Sustainable Farming. Richard became interested in Permaculture after returing from India in 1996 where he released the Lost Science of Organic Cultivation, an update of the valuable work of Sir Albert Howard. He has designed and run many farms and smallholdings.
Richard purchased land in Hawaii, 2005 and built a singlehandedly a Government approved dwelling in the Nanavale Forest on the Big Island of Hawaii. He was offered a Trusteeship of the Nanavale Forest Reserve.
The road to The HH-2 Horticultural System
Richard Higgins NDA. PDC. Philosopher and Holistic Scientist is the Founder and Director of Sustainable Agriculture London and the chairman of Good Gardeners International. Richard was raised on a Somerset mixed farm in the UK and studied his NDA at the Royal Berkshire College of Agriculture. He later completed a ten year post graduate study, of the works of Sir Albert Howard while travelling and teaching from China to Hawaii. Howard is now considered the Grandfather of organic farming and his research from the Permanent Agriculture of the east (which is where the term Permaculture was derived), and the growing system that he employed in conjunction with the Good Gardeners No Dig technology has formed the foundation of the Howard-Higgins Horticultural system. While the system has not been taught in its final form to the general public or the Manual released the technology is now being filed for an International Patent.
Richard has become a world leading exponent of this branch of Sir Albert’s work on Soil Fertility and has developed the HH-2 System into it’s third prototype today which renders all types of organic wastes and obnoxious wastes into fertiliser in 90 days. The subsequent title The Operators Manual is the latest science, innovation and IP developed by Richard through his 25 years of research on the subject. He first trialled this work on a farm in Hertfordshire and was so astounded by the results that he went to India to trial the work there again; as Howard had done 100 years before.
The road so far…
Richard is accepted as a LEAF advisor and Consultant member, June 2020
Kew Gardens Science Festival, 2019
Richard attends the Science Festival and applies to the CPU Department for verification of the HH-4 efficacy and applies again to speak at the Jodrel Laboratory.
Save the Children International, 2019
Richard, as the Chairman of GGI is offered a four year contract with Save the Children International with his business partner NorgesVel. MOU completed.
HRH The Prince of Wales
Richard’s work is known to HRH having received the transcript of his lecture at Coventry University, 2011. The HH-2 system stands on offer at the door of Highgrove today. Richard has several letters from Prince Charles.
Richard has taken advantage of marketing HH-4 through the on line facility of Ebay. The product can be found here https://www.ebay.co.uk/sch/i.html?_from=R40&_trksid=m570.l1313&_nkw=hh-4+fertiliser&_sacat=0
This year has seen Norgesvel achieve funding to take the HH-2 technology into Mozambique where many peanut farmers’ crops are suffering from the carcinogen Aflatoxin. This toxin is harboured in exhausted soil and becomes prevalent in storage of crops and when the crop is used for consumption. This will later form the partnership with GGI and SCI in 2019. With the outbreak of the Coronavirus the technology is still awaiting export into Africa.
Other areas of interest: Rothamsted have spent 50 years on the aphid problem and have to date found no solution. Richard has also communicated with the following establishments; The Potato Council Oxford and Cambridge University Farm on airborne potato blight; Wellsbourne Research Centre on freeing tomatoes from all kinds of diseases. Warwick University on setting up further growing trials in Africa and with Professor Roy Kennedy of Pershore Horticultural College who have offered verification trials on the efficacy of HH-4 on slugs, snails and caterpillars..
Eastern and Ottley Agricultural College, 2017
Richard presents a Sustainability Module for the MSc students by invitation of Dr. Tony Wilson. Two years running.
Warwick University 2017
Richard was invited to present to the Field Scientists of the Life Sciences Dept., of Warwick University which has now amalgamated with Wellbourne Horticultural Research International where Richard visited many years before to meet with Professor Noble – head of the field laboratories. Professor Holub is seeking funding to test the HH-2’s end product HH-4 on the Haricot Bean farms that he is connected with in Kenya. Also in the same year, also at Warwick, Richard presented an overview of the science of DRY sanitation to Professor Elizabeth Wellington who has been in Micro Biology for 40 years. The offer of a contract and expounding of the technology has not been taken up to date.
Survey Eastern Uganda 2016
Richard was invited to survey a school in Jinja, Eastern Uganda for the purpose of installing the HH-2 equipment and growing system for this school. An appeal for this and other projects are now on the Charity Choice web site http://www.charitychoice.co.uk/charities/search?t=qsearch&q=255300
Chairman of Good Gardeners International 2016
After being a trustee for many years Richard was offered the chair of the GGI by the founder and chariman Ramsay-Shewell Cooper and David Wilkin the previous chairman.
Kew Gardens 2016
After viewing a TV programme “Kew on a Plate” and seeing the large array of diseases and pests in the vegetable gardens of Kew Gardens in London, Richard offered to install his HH-2 system there. Their Mycology department have identified the specific fungi that Richard employs in his HH-2 system and have put him in touch with the CABI laboratory for further testing of the product. This however requires funding. Richard has received a donation to take up the offer made by HRH the Prince of Wales to attend his open invitation at the Highgrove Estate in Gloucestershire, UK, where he intends to deliver the Howard-Higgins System in person. Still awaiting a response
New Director Professor Crawford visits Well End Micro-Farm to witness 19 inch Parsnips and 3.5 Kg beetroot grown on un-dug land.
Easton and Ottley Agricultural College 2015
Dr. Anthony Wilson of the Eastern and Ottley Agricultural College invited Richard to teach a module on the Howard System to his Msc students for two consecutive years. Dr. Wilson believes this fundamental science is lacking in the agricultural institutions of today and has ordered the HH-2 system for the new greenhouse development at Askham Bryan College where he now works. Richard joined the UKTI recently and was invited to meet the Agricultural Representative for Pakistan through the British Foreign Office. He was informed that ‘the Government of Pakistan would be extremely interested in this technology.’
Oxford Real Farming Conference 2015
From the immense interest from his presentations to a packed auditorium at this conference Richard is now lecturing at Agricultural Colleges.
Attending a “Year of the Soil” lecture at Rothamsted Richard was subsequently invited to meet the new director of Rothamsted, Achim Doberman, who he hopes will take up the suggestion of the previous director Professor Maurice Moloney to ‘take this work to the Far East to obtain funding and carry out this work on a large scale.’ Awaiting further action.
Fro the Radio broadcast of Professor Ted Cocking of Leeds University on the technology of introducing nitrogen fixing bacteria onto any crop root system Richard was invited to meet the CEO of Azotic Technologies at the Institute of Directors in London to discuss his soil amendment programme. He was then offered a possible world partnership combining the two technologies.
3rd African Congress for Water and Sanitation 2013
Richard attended this congress in Kigali, funded by the Waterloo Foundation and made several approaches to the committee about the major different aspects to the Howard-Higgins DRY system that is now manufactured in the United Kingdom.
Richard presented the science of the HH-2 system to the Stockholm Environmental Institute in Stockholm, where the Director, Dr. Roasemarrin was so impressed that he suggested that ‘this science should be taught from football stadiums.’ Richard also presented to the subcommittee of SuSanA (3,000 members) where he is the co-chair of the working group WG05 – Sanitation to Agriculture.
Radio 4 Farming Today 2013
More recently he has presented at the National Badger conference in Hampshire about the prevention of the spread of TB in cattle through the introduction of the HH-2 system for sterilising cow waste and producing antibiotics in the soil that are passed into animal fodder.
Rothamsted Soil Scientists 2013
He was involved with the GM debate with Rothamsted Research and after presenting the case against GM technology on the Farming Today programme was subsequently invited to meet with the top five soil scientists of Rothamsted Research by Maurice Molony, the Director. A Forty five minute discussion ensued.
Soil Association Presentation 2012
Richard is also a consultant to various other groups on food security and presented at the National Soil Symposium, for the Soil Association. He runs a Micro-farm for teaching sustainable systems for the future.
Richard was deployed to Mozambique with The Royal Norwegian Society (NorgesVel) where trials were completed on scaling up the HH-2 system for maximum carbon sequestration from general farm wastes and local sanitation inputs. The system is known as Black Carbon Farming as this method sequesters 3 times more carbon than any above ground growth (Lawton, Permaculture Research Institute, Australia).
he spent three months at the Haiti earthquake disaster utilising the Howard-Higgins method of DRY sanitation and waste management – forming ‘the cleanest refugee camp in Haiti’ where he developed the first OXFAM urine separator footplate, which they now have in production. His site was recommended to be open to the public by the DINEPA WASH office and the site was visited and approved by the Technical Director of CRS., and many others including Professor Reid of WEDC., who, in his appraisal of the sanitation disaster in Port Au Prince Haiti, recommended that the HH-3 DRY Sanitation system was the most effective method of processing obnoxious waste management. (Haiti film II, MEDIA section of www.suaglon.co.uk).
Writing of The Lost Science of Organic Cultivation 1997
Richard completed this title in Calcutta, India, which is an update of Howard’s work
The Waste Products of Agriculture, Faber and Faber, 1931. It has now finally benn released for sale with an ISBN number June, 2020