How Small Groups
Achieve Big Things

Together is about the extraordinary revival of small groups in Britain today.

What happens when a room full of people decide to work towards the same dream? Why is it that when we come together in small groups we are so much more than the sum of our parts?

From druids to bingo-clubbers, eco-warriors to flash-mobbers, historical re-enactors to bee-keepers, books groups and knitting circles, W.I.s, Young Farmers and the fan-owners of a football club, Together reveals the true story of modern Britain. The country we live in is in fact an extraordinary composition of small groups powered by shared interests and common ideals. Hemming reveals a different way of seeing society, one that recognizes the massive, untapped potential of these hundreds of thousands of small groups, how they work and what they enable us to do that we can’t do alone.

Witty and provocative, Together gives us an extraordinary cast of characters, a series of unlikely alliances and most importantly, a vision of what we can achieve Together.


Some articles inspired by Together:

‘Group Mentality’ in the Financial Times;

‘Is the English Village Dead?’ in The Times.


The book draws on a wide range of material, from social, political and legal history through to sociobiological research, the latest in group psychology, sociology, membership figures obtained from national federations of clubs and societies, first-hand reportage, you name it. One very small part of the book – and this really is not one of the foundations on which my argument is built, as you’ll see – is the nationwide survey of small groups I ran between 2009-10. Click below for more.



Some of the groups consulted during the research for Together:

Climate Rush, Deerhurst Community Preservation, F. C. United of Manchester, The Thursday Club, Knitting Hill, Laura’s Book Group, Campaign for an English Parliament (CEP), 2nd Battalion, 95th Rifles Re-enactment Group, Farnley Estate W. I., Stunners, International Necronautical Society, The National Fancy Rat Society, Apperley Cricket Club, The Lower Wharfedale Group of the Ramblers, Hadleigh Bobbin Lace-Making Class, Pimlico Puffins, Christian Naturist Fellowship, Inverness Field Archery Club, Outdoor Swimming Society, Wimbledon Book Club, The Gay and Lesbian Humanist Association (GALHA), The London Beer Meetup, London Pooches and Pals Meetup Group, The South-East London Meetup Group, The London Rock Meetup Group, Norwich Coin and Medal Society, London BookCrossing Group, Leeds Morris Men, Headingley Badminton Club, The West Yorkshire Fuchsia Society (Leeds), Littlehampton DollsHouse Club, Rutland Road Allotment Association, Subterranea Britannica, Sunday Hoop Club (aka London Hula Hoopers Meetup), Croydon Natural History and Scientific Society Ltd, London Photographic Meetup Group, Wye Valley Transport Interest Group, Queensway, Allotment Association (Crosby, Merseyside), Thameside Sewing Bees, Coquet Yacht Club, The Real Book Club (TRBC), University of Edinburgh Humanist Society (HS), FireBeaters, The Young Georgians, Rotary Club of Stirling, Model Steam Road Vehicle Society, M5-M50-NGM, Briston Players, Edinburgh University Philosophy Society, D.A.M.E. (Dolls’ House and Miniature Enthusiasts), Mini-Ness Dolls House Club, Bozeat Players, Mendip Caving Group, Alt Tuesdays Caving Collective, Cornwall Bird Watching and Preservation Society, Wells Diving Group, Sevenoaks Allotment Holders Association, Calderdale Leisure Gardens Federation, The Association of Sustainability Practitioners, The Blackburn and East Lancashire Beekeepers Association, Ridgewood Sun Club, Altrincham and District Natural History Society, Berkshire Family History Society, 32nd (Cornwall) Regiment Foot 1808–1815, American Civil War Society, Chesham & District Natural History Society, Dorset Geologists’ Association Group, East Herts Geology Club, Shropshire Geological Society, Thorne & Hatfield Moors Conservation Forum, The British Gladiolus Society, Cleveland Naturalists’ Field Club, Friends of Bunting’s Wood, Wenvoe Wildlife Group, Colchester Natural History Society, Craven & Pendle Geological Society, Yorkshire Philosophical Society, Welford Women’s Winter Reading Group, Wharfedale Gardeners, The Dell Angling Society, Matienzo Caving Expeditions, Strathclyde University Canoe Club, NUI Galway Kayak Club, Baldock and District Canoe Club, Meridian Canoe Club, Bristol Exploration Club, Hood Bikers, South Wales Caving Club, Mildenhall Naturist Swimming Club, The Desert Divas, Two Rivers Naturist Club, South Western Outdoor Club, The Preston Stroke Club, Stroke Care for Newbury and West Berkshire Support Groups, Macclesfield and District Young Stroke Society, Derby Younger Stroke Social Group, Plane Stupid, Stew, Little Moor Allotment Association, Historical Society of Frampton, Greater London Dutch Rabbit Club, Camborne-Redruth Natural History Society, South Downs Society, Broomhouse Lane Allotment Association, Norfolk Federation of Allotments, Furness Family History Society, North Cheshire Family History Society, The Northern Koi Club, Central Scotland Bat Group, Calthorpe Project Wednesday Evening 7:30 Athletic, Middlesex County Cricket League, Shropshire Ornithological Society, The Association of British Fungus Groups, Otley Aquarists Society, Essex Badger Protection Society, South Essex Natural History Society, Barnsley Naturalist and Scientific Society, Brandon & Wolston Young Farmers Club, Welford Women’s Institute, Leamington Hastings Young Farmers Club, Barston & District Young Farmers Club, Welford School Association, Berkshire and South Buckinghamshire Bat Group, Network 2012, Exeter Canoe Club, Dabbers Session, Hoover Amateur Radio Club, The Calton Ramblers, The Remainders, Bovey Book Group, Pub History Society, New Embroidery Group, Dulwich Quilters, South London Women Artists, Dulwich Dilettantes, Painswick Players, Denmead Operatic Society, Gravesend & District Theatre Guild, Middle and East Greens Allotment Association Morpeth, Herefordshire Goat Club, Malvern Hills District Brass Band, Kippax Central W. M. C., Dawlish Black Swan Handbell Ringers, Bingley Amateur Swimming Club, Stockport Amateur Operatic Society, Artful Dodgers, Waltham Forest Hockey Club, AFC Snappers, South London Ladies Book Club, Stoke-on-Trent Reading Group, Connect Group, Buddies, Leytonstone Allotment Holders Association, Seven Kings and Goodmayes Allotment Society, Gosport Musical Theatre Productions, North Leigh Short Mat Bowls, The Bostock Singers, Liverpool Old Swan Cage Birds Society, Yoga Group, Kent lyengar Yoga Institute (KIYI), Wanderers Essex Section, Southeast Koi club, Scottish Outdoor Club, Areley Kings Players, Swansea & District Leisure Club, Sussex Chorus, Birkbeck Early Modern Society, Mabo Miniature Maniacs Dolls House Club, Tern Valley Vintage, Machinery Trust Ltd, East London Advanced, Motorcyclists (ELAM), Midland Vehicle Preservation Society