the organization

Monks of the Theravada tradition live in accordance with the original monastic code, Vinaya. This prohibits monks from both handling or holding personal rights over money. Consequently, the finances of the monastery are stewarded by a charitable body, Harnham Buddhist Monastery Trust (HBMT - see below) - and are managed on a day-to-day basis by the Monastery Management Committee (MC) and the Office Administrator. The Trustees are friends and supporters of the monastery, who serve in this capacity as an expression of their commitment to Dhamma.

The main priority of the Trust is to ensure that the sangha, the monastic community, is sufficiently provided for in the form of a place in which to live and practice. However, the sangha itself also attaches a great deal of importance to helping lay people develop their practice. This includes providing opportunities to stay at the monastery during both formal retreats and individual short-term stays. In order to facilitate these ends the Trust has established a visitor facility, Kusala House.

Harnham Buddhist Monastery Trust (HBMT)

The Trustees' Annual Report for 2022 (uploaded April 2023)

Previous Trust Reports

In 1984 the lay supporters of Aruna Ratanagiri, Harnham Buddhist Monastery, formed a charitable trust, the Magga Bhavaka Trust, as the body owning and managing the material assets of the monastery. In 2008 the Harnham Buddhist Monastery Trust (Registered Charity No. 1126476, Company No. 6688355) was set up to succeed the Magga Bhavaka Trust and became fully operational in 2010. Although constitutionally independent, this trust is closely associated with the trusts for the other Western monasteries of this tradition within the UK.

Meetings are generally held three times a year and are open to whoever wishes to attend. There are seven Directors, lay people with varying backgrounds and experience, representative of different ethnic and geographical groups of supporters. The monastic community at Aruna Ratanagiri is represented by Members who appoint and disappoint the Directors. The current Members are Luang Por Munindo and Ajahn Puñño. Trust meetings operate by consensus and are quorate with the attendance of at least two of the Directors and one of the Members.

The Trustees (Trust Directors) are:

  • Philippa Padbury: Philippa has been a supporter of the monastery since the early years of its development and has been a trustee since 1986. She is a qualified social worker and has worked in social care and research for the past twenty years.
  • Mike Pearce: Mike and his wife Carole have been supporters of Harnham for many years. He worked for over twenty-five years in banking before taking early retirement to pursue academic interests.
  • John Bower: John first visited the monastery in 2000 in connection with his studies with the Open University. He has been a regular supporter ever since and became a trustee in 2007.
  • Paul Hansen: Paul joined the Glasgow Buddhist group in 2004, he has been a regular supporter of the monastery since 2007 and became a trustee in 2011. He works as a business analyst in telecoms and has been practicing meditation for just under ten years.
  • Rion Willard: Rion's contemplative studies led him to encounter the Forest Sangha after a visit to the Buddhist Society in London, in the early 2000s. Shortly after he became a regular visitor to Amaravati and other monasteries. In 2014, Rion became a supporter of Aruna Ratanagiri, acting as the architect on a construction project that included a new larder, scullery, and visitors' eating area. He is a trained architect, and currently runs a business consultancy for architects. He became a trustee of the monastery in 2023.
  • Eddie Duncan: Eddie first came to Buddhism in 2012. He has been visiting the monastery since 2018 and attends a weekly local Buddhist group. He works as an Environment Advisor in the civil engineering sector. Eddie became a trustee of Harnham in 2023.

Office Administrator:

  • Trust Secretary and Office Administrator
    Penny Wakefield-Pearce has returned to the role of Office Administrator (December 2021) after a break of 2 years during which she acted as a Trustee of HBMT as well as continuing as Trust Secretary. Penny previously worked in the role for 15 years and has been a friend and supporter of the Forest Sangha in the UK since encountering the tradition in the late 1980's.
  • Office Assistant.
    Ian Plagaro has taken on this new support role while Penny is mostly working remotely.
    Ian has been a supporter of the Forest Sangha Tradition for the past 30 years and has a long association with Ratanagiri monastery, having previously served as a Trustee and a member of HBM committee. He works as a psychotherapist for the NHS.

Management Committee (MC)

(replacing what was earlier called the Management Group)

The Management Committee consists of the Office Administrator and two or three monks or novices. For most of the year they usually hold a formal meeting fortnightly to oversee and organize the daily running of the monastery. They have a list of contacts of volunteers within the extended lay community on who's help they can draw.

Should you need any information or advice about visiting the monastery, or ways of supporting the monastic community through offerings of practical help, food or funds, you can email

(Harnham Buddhist Monastery Trust Secretary)

(Office Administrator)

(sangha office) 

or phone the monastery at 01661 881612. We are interested in receiving your comments or suggestions.

You can also fill out a Harnham Helper's form and send it to us by email or post. We will then get in touch with you.

Current Management Committee Members

Ajahn Punnyo

Samacitto Bhikkhu

Samanera Nibbuto

Penny Wakefield-Pearce (Office Administrator)

Running Costs

The running costs of Harnham Monastery in 2022 were approximately £82,500. (This figure does not include all of HBMT’s expenses such as depreciation of property value and occasional costs such as for publications)
So it has cost around £6,800 per month or £226 per day to maintain the monastery buildings and to support the community of sangha residents and visitors.

A breakdown of some the costs

The table below is not fully exhaustive, but represents, on a monthly basis, the main costs spent in order to maintain the monastery.

Running costs 2022
Utilities £2177
Household expenses £430
Office Administration (inc. salary etc.) £1213
Governance costs (accountant) £310
Motor £593
Rent, rates, insurance £1041
Repairs and maintenance £1005
Phones and internet £200
Welfare (dentist, medicine) £70
Events £37

Some expenses are only incurred when a donation has been made specifically for that purpose (e.g. planting trees at the lake.) Such expenses are not included in the above figures. However, more essential maintenance costs (e.g. repainting of the kitchen) are generally included, even though some of these might be covered by a specific donation.

If you have any queries regarding the running costs of Harnham Monastery, you may contact the monastery's Office Administrator at