Newsletter - March 2014
In this issue...
Climate Week events - switching, ADVyCE and the Climate Week Challenge
Energy supplier switching and hydro update
A special event in Climate Week – week commencing 3rd March – is being held at Strutts Community Centre on Tuesday 4th March at 7.30pm. Hosted by Joe Dugdale from Rural Action Derbyshire the main thrust of the event will be showing people how to make the most of energy supplier switching. Everyone is invited to bring their gas and electric bills with them so that real worked examples can be demonstrated. Also attending will be Mike Shamesh from The People’s Power – a not for profit organisation who negotiate energy deals on behalf of interested householders.
Our local community energy company, ADVyCE – Amber and Derwent Valley Community Energy – will also give a talk about the potential for hydro power in the lower Derwent Valley and give an update on plans to build a new hydro power plant locally.
Social evening and Climate Week Challenge
Transition Belper are also taking part in the Climate Week Challenge and have just received instructions for the challenge. Completing the challenge should take about an hour and will be thought provoking and fun and will be discussed over a social drink at Arkwright’s Bar, Campbell Street on Wednesday 5th March from 7.30pm.
Have a Meat Free Monday
Climate Week is partnering with Meat Free Monday, the campaign led by Sir Paul McCartney to encourage people to go meat-free one day a week. The United Nations estimates that livestock production accounts for about 15% of the greenhouse gas emissions that cause climate change, so reducing meat consumption is a key way to lower your carbon footprint. Organise a meat-free meal for family and friends during Climate Week, or hold a meat-free lunch at your workplace or school. Don’t forget to register your meal on the Climate Week website so it will appear in the official listings of activities happening across the country. For lots of sustainable recipes from celebrity chefs click here. For more information about the Meat Free Monday campaign, click here.
Transition Meeting - Thursday 13th March
The next Transition Belper meeting at Strutts Community Centre at 7.30 pm on Thursday 13th March will focus our attention on travel and transport issues in an interactive, fun way....inlcuding Speed Dating style activity and a smoothie bike!
Energy Descent Action Plan meeting - Monday 17th March
At the EDAP meeting at the Old King's Head at 7.30 pm on Monday 17th March we'll be discussing how to implement the memory recording project to capture the ways in which hardship was overcome in times gone by. We'll also be looking at how to work out energy use and carbon footprints of non-domestic buildings - shops, schools, offices, factories etc - to add to what we know about the domestic sector. All are welcome to come and get involved in areas of the project that interest them.
Belper Goes Green meeting - Tuesday 25th March
As well as an update of stalls, entertainment and activities booked we'll be reviewing health and safety, the waste strategy, staffing and publicity. Click here to see the current Belper Goes Green newsletter. We also want to have a Transition Belper plant stall so if you are growing seedlings that need planting out in early June please save a few in individual pots for us to sell. Another potential development is the Great Belper Bake Off with competitions for the best loaf, best Belper Pudding etc.
Scarecrow competition planned for Belper Goes Green
We are hoping that mid-May will see scarecrows appearing in gardens and shop windows all over Belper. The idea is that on 31st May – having been on display for 2 weeks - everyone brings their scarecrow to the Belper Goes Green site at Belper Rugby Club for the great scarecrow gathering. When they are all together those attending the festival will be asked to vote for their favourite and a suitable prize will be awarded. We'll publish some tips and advice on how to make a scarecrow and there are plenty of scarecrow images online to fire the imagination. To enter the competition email your name, address, phone number and the name of your scarecrow to firstname.lastname@example.org or phone/text 07443 650 03
Belper in Transition meetings
One of outcomes from our Belper in Transition meetings so far has been the suggestion that we, as a Belper community, should develop a Neighbourhood Plan for Belper (NP4B). This is a new process that came out of the Localism Act in 2012 and since it was raised at the first meeting many of us have been asking;
What is a Neighbourhood Plan?
The summary from the Locality (www.locality.org.uk) quick guide states;
A Neighbourhood Plan is a community-led framework for guiding the future development and growth of an area. It may contain a vision, aims, planning policies, proposals for improving the area or providing new facilities, or allocation of key sites for specific kinds of development. All Neighbourhood Plans must meet Basic Conditions.
Neighbourhood plans relate to the use and development of land and associated social, economic and environmental issues. It may deal with a wide range of issues (like housing, employment, heritage and transport) or it may focus on one or two issues that are of particular importance in a local area.
A Neighbourhood Plan will be subject to examination and referendum and then form part of the Local Development Plan. This statutory status gives Neighbourhood Plans far more weight than some other local planning documents, such as parish plans, community plans and village design statements.
For Belper, we would have the opportunity to look at many different aspects that are important to the community, such as ways to improve tourism, safeguarding our heritage, have a say on the development of our retail offering, improving transport movement and options, pedestrian safety issues, encouraging local employment opportunities and the sustainability of new build developments.
The next Belper in Transition meeting is on the 14th March when we will be hearing from Tesco and hopefully other businesses, organisations and authorities about other opportunities for Belper and how we can all work together to improve the resilience and sustainability of Belper. We will report back in the following Transition Belper newsletter.
Belper Garage Sale
Like a giant car boot sale spread over Belper! Transition Belper are organising Belper's first Garage Sale for May Day Bank Holiday on Monday 5th May. If you'd like to take part you'll need to turn your front garden/drive into a shop for the day and possibly offer some refreshments. To let people know where there are open garages we'll produce a map that will be available in town and through participants. The cost of being included on the map will be £5 per house - hopefully, that will cover the costs although we will look at sponsorship possibilities. If you want to get involved in this giant recycling project please email David or Dick.
As we will have marquees on site at the Rugby Club for the weekend before Belper Goes Green to allow for Arts Festival events (and to help pay for the marquees) Dick Watson will be organising a Youth Market on Sunday 25th May to coincide with the Young Belper's Got Talent being organised by the Arts Festival. If you'd like to help out with organising stalls or arranging publicity please email Dick or phone him on 01773 826750.
Station Crew gearing up
The Station Crew are gearing up for another year of developing and maintaining the planting at the station and you can help. If you are splitting any plants – and this is the right time to do it – you might like to donate a portion to the Station Project. Not all plants are suitable as there are strict guidelines on what can and cannot be planted. Deciduous shrubs with lots of leaves, for example, cannot be planted within 5m of the tracks. If you have plants you’d like to donate please email Kate, Barbara or Lynne who can check their suitability, find some photos and circulate details of acceptable plants to the Crew.
When the Crew next meet on 19th March we can all look at what we have available and decide between us where to plant what. Donated plants can be dropped off and left on the rough ground part of the car park at St John’s Chapel – the Town Council office. If you can’t drop plants off please let Kate know and we’ll make arrangements to pick them up.
The first work session will be preceded by a safety briefing for all existing and new volunteers. The current guidelines and risk assessment are being reviewed now there is considerable experience of working at the station. Then it will be down to work – in March we need to clear weeds, prune straggly bushes, spread compost, mulch or manure and plant any donated plants. If you can join in and help – whether for 6 hours per week or 2 hours per month – your contribution will be valued and appreciated. Later in the year those who have made a consistent contribution will be invited to become ‘Station Adopters’ with the consequent reward of some free rail tickets on East Midlands Trains.
If you would like to be part of the Station Crew and added to the mailing list please let Kate know. For up-to-date work days/times please see the Transition Belper Diary page but bear in mind that inclement weather can result in late cancellations.
There are plans afoot to extend the area we work on. Once a stone retaining wall has been built to the middle section of the southbound platform garden we’ll be able to plan the clearing and planting from scratch – a process that all Station Crew members can be involved in. We’ll also be drawing up plans for some discrete compost bins with green roofing that drains to water butts to give us the luxury of some water available on site for times of drought.
Lecture Bill McGuire
Everyone is warmly invited to this public lecture - 'Waking The Giant' - How a changing climate triggers Earthquakes, Tsunamis and Volcanoes. A talk at the University of Derby by Bill McGuire on Wednesday 12th March 2014, 5pm at Kedleston Road, Lecture Theatre T204. This is a free event, however, you must book a place.
March and April meetings and events
- Tuesday 4th March - Climate Week event - a special meeting at Strutts to discuss energy supplier switching and to hear the latest plans from ADVyCe
- Wednesday 5th March - Social evening at Arkwright Bar, 5 Campbell Street Belper from 7.30
- Thursday 6th March - Core Group meeting - please email Richard if you have any ideas or items you would like adding to the agenda
- Thursday 13th March - Transition Belper meeting at Strutts at 7.30- Travel & Transport theme
- Monday 17th March - Energy Descent Action Plan meeting at the Old King's Head at 7.30
- Wednesday 19th March - Station Crew meeting at 7.30. Venue to be decided
- Tuesday 25th March - Belper Goes Green Meeting at the Queen's Head at 7.30
- Thursday 27th March - Travel and Transport Group meeting at the Old King's Head at 7.30
- Thursday 3rd April - Social evening at King William IV, Milford from 7.30
- Monday 14th April - Transition Belper meeting at Strutts at 7.30- ADVyCe update and launch
- Thursday 24th April - Travel and Transport Group meeting at the Old King's Head at 7.30
- Tuesday 29th April - Belper Goes Green Meeting at the Queen's Head at 7.30
Transition Belper Facebook Group
Keep up-to-date with the latest developments and join any discussions on Facebook. Join us here
Belper Goes Green
The shared space for all those involved in organising Belper Goes Green. Join us here
Belper and DE56 Energy Descent Action Plan
The shared space for those involved in developing our EDAP. Join us here
Travel and Transport Belper
Transition Belper group to share ideas, information and resources for travelling more sustainably in and around Belper. Join us here
Belper's fruit and veg grower's forum
There is a Facebook Group locally for exchanging tips and ideas for your garden and anything to do with growing fruit and veg. Join the Forum here
A Local group to advertise for Recycling, Upcycling, Neighbourly Help & Advice, Lending & Borrowing in the DE56 Area. Join us here
Belper Gardening Club
The Facebook page for members of the Belper Gardening Club - supported by Transition Belper. Join us here
The trustees of Transition Belper are:
Chair - David George
Secretary - Richard Keighley
Treasurer - Adrian Rochford
Core Group - Craig Scott
Core Group and Station Crew Co-ordinator - Kate Pudney
Core Group and Transport Group leader - Jennie Lindop