Author Archives: bryn

Free Fruit Day returns this Saturday – 10 October

We have a great collection of free fruit to distribute in Reigate on Saturday 10 October, so come along!

Full details are in the poster – here. We’ll be on Reigate High Street, opposite the Market Stores, between 10.00 and 15.00 – or until the fruit runs out. There are apples, pears and quinces this year – with more coming on the day.

Here are some of our pickers with the results of their hard work…

Fruit picking team

 

Transition Redhill – March Update

Time to ActClimate Change…It’s Time to Act!

The big event this month is the Time to Act climate march on Saturday 7 March. After the success of the People’s Climate March last September, this one needs to be even bigger. The climate talks in Paris this December are crucial if we’re going to protect all that we love. Our movement is growing, and we’re more diverse and determined than ever before.

Saturday’s march features a number of blocs. The Transition Bloc has a Facebook page for those who want to get in touch beforehand, and the main website for the event is here.

Now is the time to act. See you there!

Woodland Trust Tree Packs

If you or someone you know want to get involved in planting trees in their community, the Woodland Trust are giving away packs. For further information please see https://www.woodlandtrust.org.uk/plant-trees/in-your-community/.

Transition Drinks3 pints

Our monthly Transition Drinks. All welcome.

We will be in the main bar at the Garland. Come along for a chat and see what we have been doing and what we have planned. We are always keen to hear new ideas, and if you have a project you think we could help with, please come and tell us about it.

We’ll be there from 8, probably until about 9.30 or so, so drop in any time in between.

When: Tuesday, 17 March 2015 @ 8:00 pm – 9:30 pm
Where: The Garland, 5 Brighton Road, Redhill, Surrey RH1 6PP (Map)

Dates for your Diary

  • Wednesday 3 to Friday 5 March – Ecobuild at the Excel Centre, London. Detailshere.
  • Saturday 14 March – Acoustic Music Session at The Garland. Monthly acoustic music session at The Garland, Redhill from 3pm-6pm. A very informal session involving musicians of all standards. All welcome. See this page for details.
  • Tuesday 17 March – Transition Drinks. See above for more information
  • Tuesday 14 April – ‘Vegetable Growing – Techniques, Ideas & Advice’. A talk hosted by the National Vegetable Society, followed by a seed swap. Click here for more information.
  • Saturday 21 March – Green Architecture Day – public event at the University of Brighton. Details here.
  • Tuesday 21 April – GrowthBusters: Hooked on Growth. Our April Transition Drinks meeting will include a free screening of this acclaimed documentary film. See our event page for more details.

Free course placements at the Centre for Alternative Technology

Wind turbineThe Centre for Alternative Technology (CAT) is offering a funded placement for grass roots campaigners to join them on their next Zero Carbon Britain (ZCB) course.

Join them at CAT on 6 – 8 February for an empowering and inspiring weekend looking at this ground-breaking research. ZCB offers a robust, evidence-based scenario that explores ways we can deliver a climate positive future, whilst also maintaining a modern lifestyle. The course also covers how ZCB can be successfully used as a powerful tool to inspire positive action, stimulate debate and build consensus in our communities and places of work. The course is ideal for Change Makers working in Local Green Groups, Transition Towns, FOE groups, CAT members, students and activists etc

To enter please send CAT no more than 300 words (posted to the CAT Facebook page or email courses@cat.org.uk) about why you should get a funded place what you will do with the knowledge you get from the course.

Deadline is 5pm GMT 29 January 2015.

The winner will be judged by a panel of CAT staff and announced on 30 January on the CAT Facebook page.

(By entering you accept that CAT will post your name to the CAT Facebook page should you win.)

Travel to CAT is not included but vegetarian wholefood full board and onsite accommodation at CAT is included.

Transition Redhill – January Update

Happy New Year everyone! Apologies for the post-festive season lateness and brevity of this update, but there are still a few good things happening during the dark days of mid-winter…

You've Been Trumped film posterHave you been Trumped?

We will be showing the film You’ve Been Trumped at our usual Tuesday evening meeting at the Garland…

You’ve Been Trumped is a 2011 documentary by British filmmaker Anthony Baxter. The film documents the construction of a luxury golf course on a beach in Balmedie, Aberdeenshire, Scotland by developer Donald Trump, and the subsequent struggles between the locals and Donald Trump and Scottish legal and governmental authorities. The film was briefly ranked as the highest rated British film of all time on the Internet Movie Database.

Read more about the film on Wikipedia.

When: Tuesday, 20 January 2015 @ 8:00 pm – 9:30 pm
Where: The Garland, 5 Brighton Road, Redhill, Surrey RH1 6PP (Map)

Admission free. All welcome.

Bikes Revived logoCycles recycled

Did you, or anyone you know, receive a new bike for Christmas? If that has left you with an old, and no longer wanted, bike then please consider donating it to Bikes Revived in Merstham. There it will be expertly restored or recycled with usable parts being used for other bikes. (They also offer a bike assembly and safety check service for new boxed bikes.)

In Brief

  • A reminder that the Woodland Trust have free tree packs to give away to schools, communities and youth groups for spring 2015. See here for more information.
  • The renewable energy social enterprise Energy4All has started a 38 degrees petition, calling on the Financial Conduct Authority to stop blocking the creation of new renewable energy co-ops.
  • Grow Wild has thousands of free seed kits for groups to share, so people can transform local spaces into beautiful, inspiring and colourful wild flower havens. Sign up here.

Dates for your Diary

  • Saturday 10 January – Acoustic Music Session at The Garland. Monthly acoustic music session at The Garland, Redhill from 3pm-6pm. A very informal session involving musicians of all standards. All welcome. See this page for details.
  • Also on Saturday 10 January – Wassailing in Dorking. Back by popular demand.  Expect hot drinks, a bonfire for marshmallows  and a community get together at the start of the new year. Held at the Dorking Community Orchard from late afternoon to late evening. All are welcome. See here for more details.

Transition Redhill – December Update

Solar ArrayCommunity energy progress

Our Energy Services Company (ESCo) has been taking shape this year. It now has a name – Redhill & Reigate Energy Ltd – and the legal business of setting up the company is under way.

We even have the beginnings of a first project (although we need to keep that under wraps for the moment).

The next few months look set to be pretty exciting, and although we have a small and committed team taking the ESCo forward, we would be delighted to hear from anyone else who would like to get involved. Drop us an email if you would like to find out more (info@transitionredhill.org).

Christmas beanie hatCome to our Xmas party

We are taking a seasonal break from our usual Transition drinks this month, and organising a Christmas curry. We will be joining our friends from a couple of other local green-minded groups on Monday 15 December at the Everest Spice restaurant in central Redhill. All welcome, but we do need to know in advance so that we can tell the restaurant how many people to expect.

Please email Bryn (bryn.truscott@gmail.com) if you would like to join us.

AeroplaneGatwick Airport consultation

In November, the Airports Commission published for consultation its assessment of proposals for additional runway capacity at Gatwick and Heathrow airports.

The consultation presents the commission’s analysis of the proposals shortlisted by the commission last year: 2 for expansion at Heathrow Airport and 1 proposal at Gatwick Airport.

An extra runway at Gatwick would have very significant impacts on the surrounding area, so we think that as many local people as possible should be given a chance to have their say.

The consultation is open until 3 February 2015. Click here to find out more and to respond.

Many organisations, such as AirportWatch and the Gatwick Area Conservation Campaign(GACC), contend that not only that there is no business case for a new runway at Gatwick Airport, but that there is no need for increased runway capacity anywhere in the South East.

AirportWatch and GACC are planning to publish guidance on the best way to respond to the consultation.

In Brief

  • The Woodland Trust have free tree packs to give away to schools, communities and youth groups for spring 2015. See here for more information.
  • Our food group supplier, Sutton Community Farm, is currently recruiting a part-time Sales & Marketing Representative. See here for more information (please note that the closing date for applications is this week – 5 December).
  • Freedom Food (the RSPCA’s farm assurance scheme) have asked us to publicise their annual Compassionate Cook competition, which is running until Monday 12 January 2015. To be in with a chance of winning, entrants film their favourite simple dish using Freedom Food ingredients and upload the video to the Freedom Food website. See www.freedomfood.co.uk/cook for more details.

Dates for your Diary

  • Saturday 6 December – CND Fundraising Concert. Scientists have warned that nuclear weapons pose the single biggest threat to the Earth’s environment, so Transition members might be interested in this fundraising concert by the local CND group. 8pm in St Joseph’s Church Hall, 122 Ladbroke Road, Redhill RH1 1LF (Map). Details here.
  • Saturday 6 December – Say No to Plastic Bags stand, High Street, Dorking 9:30am – 1:00pm. Our colleagues in Transition Dorking will be highlighting the hazards of single-use plastic bags. This short video – “It’s a plastic world” – explains the issues.
  • Saturday 13 December – Acoustic Music Session at The Garland. Monthly acoustic music session at The Garland, Redhill from 3pm-6pm. A very informal session involving musicians of all standards. All welcome. See this page for details.

Transition Redhill – November Update

Project Wild ThingAnother Walk on the Wild Side

October’s planned film screening had to be cancelled, so we have rearranged it for November.

We will be showing the film Project Wild Thing at our usual Tuesday evening meeting at The Garland…

Filmmaker David Bond is a worried man. His kids’ waking hours are dominated by a cacophony of marketing, and a screen dependence threatening to turn them into glassy-eyed zombies. Like city kids everywhere, they spend way too much time indoors – not like it was back in his day.

He decides it’s time to get back to nature – literally.

Read more about the film on our website.

When: Tuesday, 18 November 2014 @ 8:00 pm – 9:30 pm
Where: The Garland, 5 Brighton Road, Redhill, Surrey RH1 6PP (Map)

Admission free. All welcome.

Sutton Community Farm logoFarm Start – A Food Growing Business Incubator

Sutton Community Farm, one of our food group‘s suppliers, are launching a Food Growing Business Incubator, called Farm Start. This pilot project seeks to support new entrants into food production enterprise by helping them test out their food growing enterprise ideas at a minimal risk. This is a one year pilot, aiming to explore the challenges faced by new entrants into farming including a lack of access to finance, growing space and knowledge.

There will be an information evening at the farm on 6 November if you would like to find out more. Further details here.

Gatwick mapPotential ancient woodland loss at Gatwick – an update

A few months ago we published details of a Woodland Trust campaign page which made it easy to contribute to Gatwick Airport’s consultation to the proposal to build a second runway at the airport. Over 50% of responses to the consultation were submitted via the Woodland Trust page, but it was claimed that the airport were not treating the responses as individual submissions, as they were collected as part of an ‘organised campaign’. The Woodland Trust met with senior members of the second runway project team to discuss this development, and their report on the meeting is here.

Gatwick Airport Conservation Campaign (GACC) will be holding a meeting about the second runway proposal later this month (see below).

Dates for your Diary

  • Saturday 8 November – Acoustic Music Session at The Garland. Monthly acoustic music session at The Garland, Redhill from 3pm-6pm. A very informal session involving musicians of all standards. It combines a jamming group and a songwriting group, and new members are more than welcome. Details from Sue Fenton on 07931 541369 or sue@fwords.co.uk, or visit the Reigate and Redhill Songwriters & Jammers page on Facebook.
  • Saturday 22 November – GACC Protest Meeting Meeting to discuss Gatwick Airport’s new flight path proposals and to express opposition to a new runway. 2pm at the Apple Tree Centre, Crawley RH11 0AF (Directions and map) Visit http://www.gacc.org.uk/latest-news.php for more info.
  • Saturday 6 December – CND Fundraising Concert. Scientists have warnedthat nuclear weapons pose the single biggest threat to the Earth’s environment, so Transition members might be interested in this fundraising concert by the local CND group. 8pm in St Joseph’s Church Hall, 122 Ladbroke Road, Redhill RH1 1LF (Map). Details here.

Grapes!

We have just received an email from someone who has recently moved into the local area (see below). If you would like to help rescue some grapes, please get in touch (leave a comment below, or email info@transitionredhill.org) and we will put you in touch

Hi there,

I was searching the internet for “gleaning redhill” and came across your website.

We’ve just moved house and the house has a big(ish) grape vine at the back of the house. It’s currently got A LOT of bunches of grapes. I don’t have time to cut them down, I don’t want them to go to waste, but I think time is running out.

Ideally I was hoping to find someone who would be interested in rescuing them so they don’t just go on my compost heap.

That said, I’m not sure how useful they’d be. They don’t taste too bad.

Anyway, do you know anyone that might be interested?

Regards

Transition Redhill – October Update

Project Wild ThingA Walk on the Wild Side

UPDATED: Unfortunately, we are unable to show the film ‘Project Wild Thing’ this month. We hope to be able to show it soon. We will still be holding our usual monthly meeting at the Garland on 21 October though, so please come and say hello! 

When: Tuesday, 21 October 2014 @ 8:00 pm – 9:30 pm
Where: The Garland, 5 Brighton Road, Redhill, Surrey RH1 6PP (Map)

Admission free. All welcome.

Free Fruit Day 2013Free Fruit Day – 25 October

As mentioned last month, members of Transition Redhill and Growing Redhill will be organising Free Fruit Day on Reigate High Street again this year on Saturday 25 October. We will be re-distributing local fruit, with a take home message to “grow your own”.

To make it happen, we need volunteers to help with picking fruit, collecting fruit donations, putting up posters and manning the stall. Please see the event page on our website for more information, and get in touch if you think you can help out.

TrainsGo green, save money

A new scheme called Eco-Rewards is currently being rolled out across Surrey. The scheme is backed by Surrey County Council via its Travel Smart initiative.

The aim of the scheme is to reward people for using a green form of transport when travelling to and from work. They are rewarded with points worth up to £2.50 every day that they walk, cycle or take public transport to get to and from work. They can also receive points worth up to £1.25 for every day that they work from home. The financial value of the rewards, are paid for by 1000s of well-known retailers offering cash-back on online purchases. Special discounts and offers are also available to members of the scheme.

If you are interested in finding out more, email ecorewards@smartran.co.uk or complete the contact form at http://www.smartran.co.uk/ecorewards/.

Action Surrey logoGrants for Solid Wall Insulation

Action Surrey recently announced that they have been awarded over £2.5million funding from the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) to fund the Streets Ahead project. Streets Ahead can provide you with a grant of £3,500 to contribute towards the cost of solid wall insulation. Plus there is an additional £1,000 shopping voucher for the first 8 residents who install insulation under the project.

Visit http://www.actionsurrey.org/streetsahead to read the Streets Ahead brochure online and watch the information video.

Other dates for your Diary

  • Sunday 5 October – Picnic at Horse Hill drilling site. An exploratory oil well is currently in operation at Horse Hill near Horley. There’s no fracking involved (at least for now), but Frack Free Surrey are holding a picnic near the site to raise awareness with cakes, entertainment and information. 2pm – 4pm. Visit frackfreesurrey.com or the Facebook event page for more information.
  • Saturday 11 October – Memorial Park Redhill Community Day. The grand re-opening of Memorial Park Growing Redhill will have a stall at the event.
  • Saturday 11 October – Acoustic Music Session at The Garland. Monthly acoustic music session at The Garland, Redhill from 3pm-6pm. A very informal session involving musicians of all standards. It combines a jamming group and a songwriting group, and new members are more than welcome. Details from Sue Fenton on 07931 541369 or sue@fwords.co.uk, or visit the Reigate and Redhill Songwriters Club on Facebook.
  • Sunday 12 October – “Protect the Green Belt” walk Learn more about some of Green belt sites proposed to be developed to meet the government’s housing targets. Organized by Mole Valley Green Party but open to all. Starts at Pippbrook Council offices in Dorking at 10:00am. Visit www.facebook.com/MoleValleyGreenParty for more info.
  • Monday 13 October – Frack Free Surrey Public Meeting. Following on from the Horse Hill picnic (see above) Frack Free Surrey are hosting a public meeting in Horley to consider a strategy towards oil and gas developments in the area. Speakers from Balcombe and from the Horse Hill oil company have been invited.7pm till 9pm. Visit frackfreesurrey.com or the Facebook event page for more information.

Transition Redhill – September Update

Transition Cafe FishguardTransition Cafe Culture

Could we have one of these in Redhill?

The Transition Cafe in Fishguard, Pembrokeshire is part of Transition Bro Gwaun’s surplus food project. Since it opened they estimate they have saved around 100 kilos of food per week from going to landfill. The cafe sells affordable and healthy meals and also provides some local employment (the employment opportunities are presently a bit limited, but the project is still exploring ways to achieve its long term aim of becoming a viable social enterprise).

A couple of us recently visited the Transition Cafe while on holiday, and have posted a report of our visit here.

Fresh fruit and vegGrowing Redhill Autumn events

  • Monthly watering and tidying the Merstham Station planters. Bring gardening gloves if possible.
  • Warwick School food growing project. More details when the autumn term starts.
  • 5 – 20 September Memorial Park Redhill sensory garden planting. We are likely to design and plant one of the large planters.
  • Saturday 11 October. Memorial Park Redhill Community Day. We will provide a stall.
  • Saturday 25 October Free Fruit Day stall on Reigate High Street from 10.00-15.00 (see below).

If you are interested in getting involved with any of these events, please contactsecretary@growingredhill.co.uk or call Debbie Fox on 07717 678968.

Free Fruit Day 2013Free Fruit Day – 25 October

Once again this year, members of Transition Redhill and Growing Redhill will be organising Free Fruit Day on Reigate High Street. This year it is happening on Saturday 25 October. We will be re-distributing local fruit, with a take home message to “grow your own”.

To make it happen, we need volunteers to help with picking fruit, collecting fruit donations, putting up posters and manning the stall. Please see the event page on our website for more information, and get in touch if you think you can help out.

Raw milk and other dairy products

We recently received this inquiry about raw dairy products via our food group’s website:

“I’m in the area and I do my best to get raw milk/cream/cheese for my family, though as you are most likely aware, few places sell it. Plaw Hatch Farm – about 40 minutes drive from Reigate has a great range of products and I sometimes drive out there to pick things up. However, its a fair drive to get things just for myself, and I find myself going less often than I would like/need to because of this. Do you think there’s any possibility of anyone else in your group having an interest in getting raw milk/milk products and if so, any possibility of setting up an arrangement whereby people take it in turns to go and purchase for a few people at a time? The farm do not deliver to the Redhill/Reigate area.”

If you are interested in getting involved in a group to purchase raw dairy products, please get in touch – info@redhillandreigatefood.org.uk – and we will pass on your details.

Waste Plan Residents Survey

The Surrey Waste Partnership (made up of Surrey County Council and the 11 district and borough councils in the county) is revising its plan for waste management, and has published a short survey for residents, soliciting views on how best to reduce, reuse and recycle more of Surrey’s waste.

You can access the survey here (the deadline for completion is 12 October).

Join the global day of action on September 21stPeople’s Climate March – 21st September

The global People’s Climate March is fast approaching. Hundreds of thousands of people worldwide have already signed up to make it the biggest climate mobilisation in history. If you haven’t signed yet, you can do so here.

Protect the Green Belt

From our friends in Transition Dorking…

Sunday 12 October
“Protect the Green Belt” walk, starts at Pippbrook Council offices, 10:00am.
Come along if you would like to see and learn more about some of Green belt sites proposed to be developed to meet the government’s housing targets. The tour includes talks on the history and wildlife of the sites, and a performance of Linden Lea by the fields which inspired local composer Vaughan Williams. Meet at the Pippbrook Council offices for a 10 mile walk, or come for one section only. This event is organized by Mole Valley Green Party but open to all.  Visit www.facebook.com/MoleValleyGreenParty for the schedule.

GuitarAcoustic Music Sessions at The Garland

A quick reminder about the monthly acoustic music session that takes place at the Garland on the second Saturday of every month from 3pm-6pm. The event is a very informal session involving musicians of all standards. It combines a jamming group and a songwriting group, and new members are more than welcome.

Details from Sue Fenton on 07931 541369 or sue@fwords.co.uk, or find the Reigate and Redhill Songwriters Club on Facebook.

When: Saturday, 13 September 2014 @ 3:00pm – 6:00 pm
Where: The Garland, 5 Brighton Road, Redhill, Surrey RH1 6PP (Map)

3 pintsTransition Drinks

Our monthly Transition Drinks. All welcome.

We will be in the main bar at the Garland. Come along for a chat and see what we have been doing and what we have planned. We are always keen to hear new ideas, and if you have a project you think we could help with, please come and tell us about it.

We’ll be there from 8, probably until about 9.30 or so, so drop in any time in between.

When: Tuesday, 16 September 2014 @ 8:00 pm – 9:30 pm
Where: The Garland, 5 Brighton Road, Redhill, Surrey RH1 6PP (Map)

Waste not, Want not, Way out west

We are just back from our summer holiday in west Wales, where we discovered the lovely Transition Cafe in Fishguard.

Transition Cafe FishguardThe cafe, which was opened by Transition Bro Gwaun in June 2013, collects surplus food from local shops and businesses – within a 4 mile radius to minimise the food miles – and turns as much as possible into affordable and healthy meals for sale. The menu changes daily – while we were there it included quiches and pasta bakes. All main courses are served with a large portion of salad, and the average price was around £3.

The cafe is run by 30+ volunteers with the support of 2 part-time paid staff (and has achieved the highest hygiene rating going from local Environmental Health inspectors).

Surplus food can’t cover all the cafe’s requirements, and it does have to buy in things like butter, cream, coffee, tea, flour, sugar, rice, pasta, and cleaning and hygiene products. But they estimate that they save 100 kilos of food from landfill every week – half of this is cooked and sold in the cafe, while the other half goes for composting or to a bio-digester (with some used for animal feed, where appropriate).

The project is still exploring ways to achieve its long term aim of becoming a viable social enterprise, able to provide secure employment to local people. At present the cafe is only making sufficient money to employ one young person two days a week and cleaners once a week. Start-up costs and renovation of the premises were achieved through the generosity and hard work of many local businesses and volunteers, and grants from several organisations, including Environment Wales. The cafe building is owned by the local Co-op supermarket, and is provided rent-free.

Blackboards outside Transition Cafe FishguardMore than just a cafe though, the premises act as a community resource, holding Food Safety training courses, as well as musical and other events. It is also well stocked with leaflets and books on waste reduction and sustainable living and information about other local events and organisations.

What about Redhill?

So…could we do something like this in Redhill? The following quote from the Transition Bro Gwaun website highlights why people might want to get involved:

“The project has been particularly successful in attracting volunteers from a much wider cross section of the community than have previously engaged with Transition Bro Gwaun activities.
“In addition to traditional Transitioners, it has attracted people who just can’t abide food waste, people who want to see low cost healthy meals available in the area, people concerned about poverty, people who want to see empty shops put to good use, people who want new and different initiatives to energise and regenerate the town, organisations who want more work experience opportunities for local young people, and finally, but most importantly, creative cooks who just love the challenge of having to make a meal out of whatever odd assortment of food comes through the door.”

Obviously this isn’t something we could set up overnight, and it will need quite a few volunteers to get it going, but if you think it sounds interesting, please get in touch – leave a comment on this post, send us an email (info@transitionredhill.org) or pop in to one of our meetings in The Garland on Brighton Road (3rd Tuesday of every month – as of writing this article the next one is on 16 September, but see the event list on the right for future meetings).

More information on the Transition Cafe in Fishguard can be found here.