Brexit Party candidate charging up to £100,000 a person for place at post-apocalyptic farm

A prospective parliamentary candidate for the Brexit Party has built a post-apocalyptic farm and hopes to charge guests up to £100,000 a year to live there.
Brexit Party candidate Peter DaweBrexit Party candidate Peter Dawe
Brexit Party candidate Peter Dawe

Entrepreneur Peter Dawe, 65, thinks climate change, political unrest and famine pose a serious threat to British society and thinks the future of the country looks ominous.

In response, Mr Dawe, who made his money in tech, has bought a 1,500 acre farm in Norfolk and is transforming into a "self-sustainable" community for like-minded "survivalists".

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The post-apocalyptic farm has been launched by Brexit Party candidate Peter DaweThe post-apocalyptic farm has been launched by Brexit Party candidate Peter Dawe
The post-apocalyptic farm has been launched by Brexit Party candidate Peter Dawe
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The extraordinary "survive and thrive" farm could house up to 100 people, he said, though there is the potential 1,000 people could one day thrive there.

Each would pay an annual subscription between £10,000 and £100,000.

Society may crumble

The project is called Beat the Bear and boasts an orchard, flour mill, solar panels and livestock. A community garden to grow fruit and vegetables is also in the pipeline.

Currently, the farm has five houses, with two in need of restoration. Mr Dawe has already gained planning permission for three more houses.

There is also a local water pumping station and a portable water storage reservoir serving more 50,000 people. The farm even has two private boreholes.

Mr Dawe, from Ely, Cambridgeshire, asked for the exact location of his farm not to be disclosed. He was announced in September as the Brexit Party's candidate for Cambridge at any coming election.

"I've had the idea for 15 years, but it's really taken shape the last couple of years," he said.

Very own pumping station

"I've been concerned about how fragile society is and I don't think it would take much for us to lose civilisation.

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"People tend to exaggerate, we're not going to die out. The quality of life maybe somewhat different to what we have today.

"Ten years ago I commissioned Anglia Ruskin University to do some research into the fragility of the world and created an economic model that looks at food, water and energy.

"They then used that model to test different scenarios.

"What if Iran stopped the oil coming out the USA, what if a volcano really went off in Iceland, what would happen if China stopped shipping items?"

Vegetable patch

Mr Dawe said the end of civilisation could be sparked by numerous scenarios, but he doesn't think Brexit will be the cause.

He said: "Most of the possible outcomes are political rather than geological - politicians failing to agree on significant matters. Brexit won't be the cause.

"A few years ago there was a shortage of rice. We have to make sure not only that there there is enough food, but all the other things that make life tolerable."

After selling his company Pipex, the UK's first commercial internet service provider, back in 1995, one of his first decisions was to buy a farm in central Norfolk a year later. He chose one well above sea level for fear of flooding.

Mr Dawe, who in 2016 stood to become mayor of Peterborough and Cambridgeshire, hopes people can live off the land in the years to come.

Unknown location

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He said: "A lot of people are going off grid and are being self sufficient. It is possible, but it's a lot of hard work.

"In a self sufficient community people would only be required to work 20 hours a week and most of that would be what they want to do rather than it being work.

"They can have an everyday job if they want.

"Most people will have a reason for the task they are doing, one person might be in charge of doing the accounts, one person may work on the farm.

"I think people will be surprised when they start living self sufficiently how little they need to work."


Mr Dawe, who was made an OBE in 2001 for his work combating child pornography, said: "We will be encouraging our community to buy their own accommodation in easy travel distance as it grows.

"The local village already has a social club, large church and a large public house and we don't think scavenging DVDs will be difficult.

"Currently we have around 1300 tonnes of grain, 400 tonnes of oil seed, 120 cows, 3 pigs and a few chickens, the latter two are about to become somewhat larger.

"We have 200kw of solar and a 500kw diesel generator. We have plans for a 1MW wind turbine. we also have a 200kw bio-mass boiler for heating.

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"We also have diesel, seed and chemicals sufficient for a further year of "normal" cropping.

Mr Dawes ran for mayor

"We are already operational. Over time we get ever more self sufficient."

Mr Dawe also explained: "One thing we will have is a messaging system from phone to phone that doesn't require a phone network to continue operating.

"You will be able to send messages directly phone to phone because one of the first things that could go down if society breaks down is phone networks."

Mr Dawe claims everyone should have tins of food in the cupboard just in case society crumbles.

He said: "We have had food rationing for ten of the last 150 years. Why would you not have tinned food in cupboard?

"You insure your house in case of a fire but the chances of it actually burning down are pretty slim.

"In the event of an emergency, knowing where to go, that you will be welcome, and that the place is prepared will be priceless."