Green Coffee
You are invited to Green Coffee on Tues 2nd April  9.30-11am at the YMCA, 200 The Broadway. We'll be meeting in the cafe upstairs - there is a lift and plenty of space, so it's fully accessible. 

We're hoping that a Project Dirt representative will be there next Tuesday, to tell us how groups can make the most of the facilities on the new Project Dirt website, including setting up a Merton cluster - which should help us all network better. Also, Dean Sutcliffe is planning to be there, to discuss measures to make Centre Court shopping centre greener.
The Green Coffee after that will be on May 7th at the Gooseberry Bush. We're currently looking for a new home for Green Coffee - people liked both the YMCA and the Gooseberry Bush so we're trying them both out again.

Please put 20th April in your diary.

This is the date for Green Coffee's FESTIVAL OF IDEAS. This is your opportunity to spend a bit more time discussing ideas for making Wimbledon better and greener. It follows the UPCYCLING WIMBLEDON event at St Mark's Hall in the centre of Wimbledon. You can help to make these events a success by downloading a poster HERE and pinning it up on a noticeboard. More details on both below. Many thanks.

Would you like to make community food growing happen in Wimbledon?
Here is an opportunity to put your ideas into action! Transition Town Wimbledon's food group needs a new leader - to plan community food growing and other ways of helping people to grow, make and sell food. So if local food is your passion, then please get in touch with Joyce at This is a voluntary role and is supported by TTW and its networks. There are two potential community garden sites and the council is offering plots of land around the borough for food growing. Make this project your own! 

All Topics
  1. Haydon’s Rd Orchard 
  2. Bees for Centre Court? 
  3. Horticulture in the National Curriculum
  4. The Green Deal 
  5. Big London Energy Switch
  6. Environmental Education
  7. Mitcham Carnival & Anti-nuclear Marches
  8. Myrna Close
  9. From Living Green Centre to Greening Business
  10. Dig Merton 
  11. Tamworth Farm Allotments
  12. Fairtrade Fortnight, Earth Hour & Night Shelter
  13. The Polka Theatre
  14. The Challenge Network
  15. Borrowing Gardening Tools
  16. Growing Sweet Potatoes in Wimbledon?
  17. Cycling in Merton
  18. The Chelsea Fringe
  19. Candle Wax – what to do with it?

Find past copies of the Green Coffee Update HERE

What's On?

6.4  10am - 5pm
Campaigning Training
St Paul's Community Centre

13.4  10am-2pm
Windmill Market
St Mark's Church Hall

10.3   10am- 12 noon
Make a Difference 
Colliers Wood

20.3  8pm onwards
Green Drinks
Hand & Racquet

20.4  11am-2pm
Upcycling Wimbledon
St Mark's Church Hall

20.4  2 - 3.30pm
Festival of Ideas
St Mark's Church Hall

29.4  2-4pm
Make your own Bag
St Mark's Church

All Topics at March Green Coffee

1. Haydon’s Rd Orchard 
Six fruit trees have been planted on the strip of grass near the entrance to the station by local man Patrick, who lives nearby. Neighbours will be leafleted to tell them about the trees and to ask for their help in caring for them. Unfortunately, two trees have already been vandalized  
2. Bees for Centre Court? 
Centre Court is looking at putting a beehive on the roof. Leading Wimbledon Bee-Keepers, Alison and Debs, advised on how to get advice and training. They cautioned that bee-keeping requires a considerable input of time and commitment, although having a well-looked after hive is a rewarding and worthwhile venture.   
3. Horticulture in the National Curriculum
Horticulture and learning how to cook look set to become part of the National Curriculum in schools, being included as a key activity in Design and Technology classes for children ages 5-14 (Key Stages 1-3).  The draft National Curriculum says children should “understand food and nutrition and, where possible, have opportunities to learn to cook”. The final version of the National Curriculum is due to be published in August 2013. Find out more from Garden Organic  HERE
4. The Green Deal
Under the Green Deal scheme, representatives will measure your energy bill, assess your house to see what energy-saving measures you can take. They will then put together a plan for installing these measures and for paying for them. Once energy-saving measures are installed in your house, you should be using less energy and have lower bills (although there can never be guarantees). The savings on your bill can then be used to pay for all the work done. Everything done should pay for itself in 20 years or less.
However, there are some outstanding issues. There is a concern that contractors doing the work might persuade people to buy extras and this sort of behavior has to be discouraged. Also, the interest rate on the loan will be 7% pa, above currently available rates.
You can get the assessment done for free by contacting Sustainable Merton now. (Free assessments are only available up to the end of March.)  Otherwise, the charge for an assessment is likely to be £100 – 150. If you have an assessment done, you are not obliged to take it any further. However, if you do go ahead with the plan, you won't have to pay for the assessment. The government has made £125m for providing cashbacks to the first households to sign up to Green Deal plans, so early adopters could get over £1000 cashback – see HERE 
If you would like to help Sustainable Merton launch the Green Deal, please get in touch with Mike at Or else call the Sustainable Merton on 020 3417 0476 – and leave a message if the office is closed.
5. Big London Energy Switch
Merton is one of 17 London boroughs signing up for the Big London Energy Switch. If lots of people sign up, it should be possible to get a very good deal from energy companies. Signing up does not commit you to anything – it’s just means you are interested in finding out what deals are available.

Sustainable Merton is encouraging people to look for a better deal. So contact Mike to sign up for the Big London Energy Switch by emailing or phoning 077884 32489. OR you can register direct on (and please do let Mike know if you have done this, as he is collecting the data).
A number of other points were made around choosing an energy supplier.
  • Some energy brokers are offering a different sort of deal, whereby they will switch a business to the best energy deal available at the time.
  • The Big London Energy Switch looks at the cheapest deal, rather than the greenest deal.  If people don’t want to switch away from green electricity suppliers, it was suggested that they just switch their gas, as there are no green gas suppliers.
  • There could be a rebound effect. If energy is cheaper, people might use more. SM is going to look at whether this happens.
  • Energy supplier Ecotricity not only provides green electricity, but also treats customers very well.  Also, you can be confident that as it gets more customers, additional green energy is generated. (Ecotricity has just announced that it is building a new, unopposed windfarm.) If you switch to a green energy contract with one of the large energy companies, this can result in less green energy being supplied to its mainstream (non-green) customers - so no overall increase in the amount of green energy generated.
6. Environmental Education
Abby is on maternity leave from a being Schools Project Manager at Global Action Plan, the UK’s leading environmental behaviour change charity, helping businesses, schools and communities to reduce their impact on energy, waste, water and travel. Abby has worked on a water project at Bishopsford School and is happy to help with educational work in the area. Abby is also helping Alison with 5-13 year olds at the Wimbledon Common Nature Club.
7. Mitcham Carnival & Anti-nuclear Marches
The Mitcham Carnival is on Sat 15th June, at Three Kings Piece in Mitcham. Joanna hopes to get together a group of decorated bicycles to take part in the parade, similar to the group at the Winter Wonderland Parade. On the second anniversary of Fukushima, the Japanese community and friends are holding a large protest march. Also coaches will be going to the Aldermaston anti-nuclear weapon protest on easter weekend. For further information on any of those, please contact Joanna on
8. Myrna Close
Meg is attending a meeting today (5th March) with council officers and councillors, to see if something can be done about the mess at Myrna Close. The fly-tipping and general rubbish in the area has been a problem for several years. There is now a major problem with blue green algae, but the council won’t do anything about it, as this is not council land. Also, installing litter bins has meant rubbish being piled up near the bins.
The problems at Myrna Close came up at Sept 2012 Green Coffee and afterwards Joanna and Meg made some enquiries. It appears that the London Wildlife Trust is not responsible for this site, as was thought. It is public land and the council has a limited programme for looking after it. It was suggested that the The Challenge Network or the Youth Reparations team could help with tidying up the area – however the reparations team is no longer doing such work, as in the post-riot period young people were being challenged by the general public.
POST-MEETING NOTE: Charles joined Meg to meet the council representatives. Cllrs Nick Draper and Laxmi Attawar attended. One outcome is that the council's Public Realm Manager is organising the clear up of the existing flytipped material at Myrna Close. 
9. From Living Green Centre to Greening Business
Caroline was the co-ordinator for the work being done at the National Trust’s Living Green Centre in Morden Hall Park. She is now in charge of Merton Chamber of Commerce’s Greening Business Programme. Under this, 12 hours of free support are offered to businesses, as well as charities, churches and other organisations. Typically an organization would have 5 or more employees, however support is also available to smaller groups including micro-businesses. The programme spans six boroughs, including Merton, Wandsworth and Richmond. Find out more HERE or else email 
10. Dig Merton
This is the name for the council’s community Food Growing initiative. The council and Merton Priory Homes have identified land around Merton that could be used for growing food and flowers. The council has made available some maps, showing where potential growing spaces are and some of the maps can be downloaded below:

all parks + open spaces
all parks
Colliers Wood parks
Lower Morden parks
Merton Park + Morden parks

Merton Priory Homes - Carters
Merton Priory Homes - Cherry Tree + Phipps Bridge
Merton Priory Homes - Hatfield Mead
Merton Priory Homes - High Path
Merton Priory Homes - Watermead  

11. Tamworth Farm Allotments
This is a new project for Sustainable Merton. Nearly 4 acres of land are being cleared of brambles and rubbish to create 65 new allotments. This project is receiving over £77,000 of funding from the Big Lottery’s Food Fund. For more information, see HERE. There is going to be a big litter pick at the site on Sunday 17th March (as long as it’s not raining). Find details of how to get there under EVENTS below.  For any queries, contact Ruth on
12. Fairtrade Fortnight, Earth Hour & Night Shelter
It is Fairtrade Fortnight from Mon 25 February to Sun 10 Mar. At Holy Trinity Church, the Fairtrade message is being given in the services and there is a stall after services offering Fairtrade products for sale.
This year, Earth Hour is on Sat 23rd March at 8.30pm. People around the world are asked to switch off lights for 1 hour, as a sign of concern for our planet and the environmental challenges it faces.
The YMCA's Night Shelter closed on March 7th after an extended period of action over the winter months.  Many local churches, the synagogue and a mosque have helped to provide a warm bed for the homeless.  
13. The Polka Theatre
The theatre is always looking for ways to become more sustainable. In October, there will be a project to highlight climate change and the challenges it poses. There will be a production and activities for children. The Polka Theatre now has a community garden for its staff and already has 3 fruit trees planted there. 
14. The Challenge Network
This is a national charity to provide opportunities for 15-17 year olds as part of government’s National Citizens Service. It aims to bring together young people from all backgrounds through practical action, beginning with an intense 3 week period to build confidence and skills. The first week will be spent in Wales on outdoor activities. Then volunteers design a fund-raising activity and a campaign on a local issue they care about. The aim is for volunteers to improve their CVs and become more tied to their communities.
The Challenge Network in Merton is partnered with Sustainable Merton, and has done fund-raising and projects such as helping at Tamworth Farm Allotments and lots of other projects around Merton. If you have a project you would like volunteers to help with, then get in touch with Jen who is the new Challenge Network manager in Merton. Her email is This could be to organise a Project Action Day – normally involving 12 young people and up to £150 of funding (it will include an induction hour). Or a Big Challenge – involving 60 young people, and up to £400 of funding. Examples of projects are clearing an allotment of brambles, painting a fence, campaigning for free bus travel. 
15. Borrowing Gardening Tools
Merton Tree Wardens have gardening tools, which can be lent out. Spades, forks, trowels, secateurs, loppers, saws, barrows etc.can be collected from Jane Plant, Kingston Rd. Contact Jane at email or mobile 07773 406 105. 
16. Growing Sweet Potatoes in Wimbledon?
Sweet potatoes can be grown here. The best thing to do is just to plant a whole sweet potato, preferably one grown in the UK so that it is a variety that can cope with our weather. Alternatively, there are sweet potatoes in the Garden Organic catalogue. 
17. Cycling in Merton
The Cycling Weekend at West Barnes Library went well. This was organised by Merton Cycling Campaign and Friends of West Barnes Library. It would be good to roll this out across Merton libraries, but more volunteers are needed to help with this.

20’s Plenty is meeting once a month, on the first Monday. It has asked the council to adopt 20mph as a default speed across Merton, but this has not been accepted. The current administration opted to evaluate the existing 20mph zones, to find out what this has cost and what the impact has been. Individuals have written to the Wimbledon Guardian and this stimulated discussion. Letters are more often published when they respond to a previous letter or to a recent event. Another way of trying to get change is to ask the council’s scrutiny committee to look at this – suggestions are currently being accepted, see HERE. People can also write to their local councillors. However, councillors usually just vote along party lines, so may not be very responsive to public pressure. For enquiries about the London Cycling Campaign, 20’s Plenty for Merton and Living Streets, please contact Charles at
18. The Chelsea Fringe
Curt has received a number of suggestions about where to put his gardening-linked display and will keep Green Coffee updated. If you would like to become part of the Chelsea Fringe, then it’s not too late. Just get in touch with the organisers HERE. Or else contact Curt for more information at . You can see a list of things to see across London HERE. This year, projects are being submitted from outside of London and even from abroad. 
19. Candle Wax – what to do with it
Holy Trinity Church is renewing its candles and wants to dispose of some leftover candle wax. It was suggested that Freegle could be used to find someone who wants candle wax. Or else the church could return the remaining candle wax to the supplier.

What’s on

Sat 6th April  10am-5pm
Free training for campaigning on climate change
St Paul's Community 
Centre, 23 Inner Park Road, Wimbledon Park SW19 3SX
This is a one-day event in Wimbledon Park, where you can build your skills and knowledge on how to use the media, build networks and influence people. Find out the latest on how climate change is impacting food, the economy and energy. This event is hosted by Stop Climate Chaos and Practical Action. Find out more and register your attendance HERE.

Sat 20th April 
Upcycling Wimbledon & Festival of Ideas
St Mark's Church Hall   SW19 7ND

11am - 12 noon    UPCYCLING FAIR
Come along and find out about Upcycling - saving money and doing something better with food, fabric, clothes before discarding. Lots of ideas - refashioning clothes, recipe ideas for that food at the back of the fridge (also free pancakes!), grow food for free and lots more. If you would like to help or have an idea for a stall, contact 

A brainstorming workshop to look at what can be done - to improve Wimbledon; to make walking and cycling a better choice; saving energy; helping people to grow, make and sell food in Wimbledon ... or any other topic. There will be time at the start for you to tell everyone what you (or your group) are doing to make Wimbledon better and greener. For more information, contact

Download a poster HERE or ask Juliet or Joyce for a paper copy. We'd be grateful if you could publicise this event to your networks. Find the venue HERE.

Mon 29th April   2-4pm
Make Your Own Shopping Bag
in the Chapter Room at St Mark’s Church (behind Wimbledon library)

Come along and join this friendly group. Learn some basic sewing techniques or help others to do so. Bring your own fabric or select from the range provided. Find the venue 

First Thursdays
Sow and Grow Local
Salt & Pepper Café, 177 Replingham Rd  SW18 5LY
Join Tim for a fun evening talking about how to plan growing fruit, salads and vegetables in your garden or on your windowsill. Seed swop and lots of tips. Get in touch with your food chain ! Cost is £6 per session. Refreshments are available. Find out more by contacting Tim tel. 07836781498 or   Download more information HERE.

Second Sunday   10am - 12 noon
 Make a Difference  
This group meets up at a different Colliers Wood location each month. The group plants, trims trees, tidies up plastic bags, does weeding - whatever is needed. For information on where to meet up, see HERE.
Second Saturday  10am - 2pm
The Windmill Market
St Mark's Church, behind Wimbledon Library   SW19 7ND
This is a new market in the centre of Wimbledon, with local food & drink and craft stalls. The next market is on April 13th. If you would like to take a stall or want more information, please contact

Third Wed, from 8pm 
Green Drinks
Hand & Racquet pub, 25-27 Wimbledon Hill, SW19 7NE

Everyone is welcome at Green Drinks, now in a central Wimbledon location. If you are interested in green and other sustainability issues, then this is an opportunity to exchange ideas, find out what's happening and just have a chat with like-minded people. The next Green Drinks is on 20th Mar. To find out how to get to the Hand & Racquet, see here. Find the venue here.

 new mid-week time 
Rag Rug Making

Learn how to use recycled materials to make beautiful bags and rugs. To find out when the next session is, call Thelma on 020 8540 2536 or email
Community Gardens - Christ Church & Fireplace

There are regular work days throughout the growing season. The Christ Church garden is in West Wimbledon and the Fireplace Garden is just off Kingston Rd. To find out when the workdays are or just want more information, please get in touch with

Fridays 10am - 12noon & 2.30-4.30 pm; Saturdays 10am-12noon
Colliers Wood Community Garden
at the back of Christ Church Hall, in Colliers Wood

Join Keith and friends for some gardening. For more information, contact

Every Saturday, 9am-1pm
Wimbledon Farmers’ Market
Wimbledon Park Primary School, Havana Road, SW19 8EJ

A chance to get your groceries direct from local farmers. Find the venue HERE

** Morden Hall Market has closed for the time being**
Discussions are ongoing about how to re-launch it. Find out about the relaunch on the National Trust website - HERE

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