Green Coffee         september  2016
Thanks to everyone for coming to Aug Green Coffee - and a special thanks to Rowena who came for the first time.

Crossrail 2 continues to be a big concern. Our community is making a positive contribution with two excellent publications - one from the Wimbledon Society HERE suggesting less destructive options for Wimbledon station - the other from WEHRA and Sustainable Merton, surveying opinion on a new town centre HERE. The other big topic is waste, with concerns over the level of service and about the switch to wheelie bins. We heard good news from the Gooseberry Bush, as it becomes a hub for recycling coffee wrappers. And Green Coffee member continue to amaze, with a kind offer from saxophone playing members to perform for good causes.

Don't forget to come along to Abundance Fruit Day on Sat 17th Sept - where Green Coffee members and many others sell homemade jams, cakes, juice from the fruit press, pie-making, music & games.

Next Green Coffee will be on Tuesday 4th Oct at 9.30 to 11am at the Wibbas Down Inn. This is the J.D. Weatherspoon pub with entrances from both Russell Road opposite Wimbledon theatre and Gladstone Road, SW19 1QT between Paddy Power and the cycle shop. We have a space right in the middle of the pub between the two entrances. The meeting after that will be on Tues 1st November.

PLEASE NOTE: The Green Coffee Update covers whatever views are expressed by individuals at the meeting. Indeed, Green Coffee members often have different views on topics. The newsletter does not verify information or web links, so it's up to you to challenge views or correct information - and if you can't make it along, you are very welcome to send in your comments for discussion at the next meeting.
Download the latest from: 
Sustainable Merton HERE
SWLEN (Richmond) HERE
Transition Town Tooting HERE
EcoLocal (Sutton) HERE


news at September Green Coffee

1. Abundance Fruit Day - 17th Sept


Recycling & Waste

2. The Gooseberry Bush - now collecting coffee wrappers

3. Squirrels is Down-sizing

4. Comments on Rubbish Management

5. Communications with Cllr Garrod
   Garth Rd
           The new wheelie bin scheme

6. Any Use for old Calendars?


7. Crossrail 2

8. Colliers Wood Residents to use Speed Cameras!

9. Air Quality Data 2015


Food , Gardening & Green Spaces

10. Food Waste

11. Don't Judge a Pear by it's Skin

12. A Very Warm Day Out

13. Green Flag awards to five parks

Events & publications

14. All About Ethical Investment

15. UWRA newsletter

16. Future of the Natural Environment

17. Wimbledon Common Nature Club

18. Walk4Life

Other Things Local

19. A Green Coffee Wedding!

20. YMCA - consultation

21. Green Coffee welcomes New Member

22. Delegation sees local MP re. Trident

23. Theresa May & the Climate Change Agreement

24. Green Coffee's Got Saxophonist Talent!

What's On?

16.9 & 17.9
Quilt Show
Mansel Rd Centre SW19

17.9  11am-2pm
Abundance Fruit Day
St Mark's garden 

from 10.30am
Scrub Bashers
Wim Common

22.9 -25.9
env conference


from 11am
Litter Pick
Wandle Park

Ethical Investment
Trinity URC  SW19 4AA

Bring & Buy
John Innes

Autumn Fair

Colliers Wood

Jumble Trail


Find past issues of Green Coffee Update HERE


September Green Coffee - news

1. Abundance Fruit Day - 17th Sept
Abundance Fruit Day is on Saturday 17th September 11am-2pm
at St Mark's Church garden & hall (behind Wimbledon Library)

Abundance Fruit Day is coming up soon! To make the day a success, Abundance needs donations of ...
  • cakes & puddings
  • chutneys & jams
  • plants - especially fruit, herb, winter salads & veg - but any are welcome
  • any surplus fruit or veg
For further information, please contact Or phone Juliet at tel. 020 8946 2514.

There has been lots of great publicity for Abundance, thanks to Alyson who has organised an effective media campaign this year, with articles in Time & Leisure, the Wandle Fortnight, the John Innes newsletter, the Wimbledon Guardian and many other local publications. Well done Alyson!

Carole and team have been picking around Wimbledon Park, including Durnsford Rec's fruiting hedge which has yielded fruit such as crab apples, sloes, rosehip etc. Many of the apples and pears show signs of weather damage and the most damaged fruit has been given to Deen City Farm. Carole asked if anyone had used rosehip. Joyce has made some rosehip syrup, but cautioned that it has to be sieved through muslin, as rosehip contains fibres that are irritant. Hawthorns can also be added to apple jelly, but a lot is needed to get a flavour - and the leaves must not be eaten!


Recycling & Waste

2. The Gooseberry Bush - now collecting coffee wrappers
If you have any sort of coffee packaging - coffee refill bags, jar lids, coffee bean bags and coffee sticks - you can now take it to The Gooseberry Bush (115 Kingston Rd) for recycling. This is the latest drop off point for the TerraCycle scheme, which finds a use for otherwise un-recyclable items and generates funds which are sent to a charity. The Gooseberry Bush's chosen charity is the Wimbledon Breast Feeding Drop In. Find out about The Gooseberry Bush HERE. Find out about TerraCycle HERE.

3. Squirrels is Down-sizing
The Squirrels Community Scrap scheme is downsizing, following cuts to funding from local government. Based in Sutton, Squirrels collects off-cuts and waste material from factories and individuals and makes those available to schools, drama groups and many other organisations across this part of London for a small annual membership fee. It is sad to see a valuable community and recycling resource diminish. Find out more about Squirrels and become a member HERE

4. Comments on Rubbish Management
A number of points about rubbish management were made.
  • A recent article in the Wimbledon Guardian showed over-flowing waste bins in Merton. See it HERE.
  • Fly-tipped rubbish at Phipp's Bridge allotments has lain there for a very long time.
  • The free Bulky Waste Service is not taking any more bookings at present, until they clear the backlog of requests.
  • The standard of cleaning in Wimbledon town centre has been variable, with street sweepers doing a good job, but the 'hoovering' of rubbish not being done properly.
  • At Wandsworth recycling centre, there are no steps and people can more easily throw the bags of rubbish down into skips. Green Coffee members widely agreed that the most helpful person at Garth Rd is the woman!
  • There are significant differences between the Lavender Fields trial and the new wheelie bin system, so the two schemes are not comparable.
  • First, we had separation of recyclable, then non-separation and now separation again - it is confusing.
  • The large bins can be difficult for elderly people, even opening the lid can cause a problem. In some places bins are kept on the pavement, which is a nuisance.
  • Central government cuts have led to councils making difficult choices on where to cut expenditure. The consequence has been reduced services and the loss of groups, like Squirrels Community Scraps (reduced service) and The Vine Project. However, it was pointed out that at the last election, people did vote for an austerity agenda.
POST MEETING NOTE: Louise reported that the Bulky Waste service is taking bookings again. Also, after raising the issue of the Phipp's Bridge rubbish with two councillors, some of it has now been cleared, however communications are continuing regarding the rest.

5. Communications with Cllr Garrod
Following discussions at Green Coffee about waste collection and handling, Joanna and Joyce contacted Cllr Ross Garrod, the new cabinet member in charge of Street Cleanliness and Parking.

Garth Rd
Joanna wrote to Cllr Garrod about problems at Garth Rd including there being little help for taking heavy loads up steep steps and putting them into skips, the lack of publicity for the bulky waste collection and less diversion of re-usable items. See Joanna's letter HERE

Cllr Garrod replied that due to space restrictions, they need to have steps up to skips, but he has asked for Veolia to be reminded of their obligation to help people. The council and Veolia are setting up a facility to collect all items suitable for direct re-use and to sell them through a re-use shop - when this is up and running, it will be publicised. See Cllr Garrod's full letter HERE 

The new wheelie bin scheme
Concerns have been raised about how disabled and elderly people will manoeuvre the large wheelie bins and how in some streets (terraced housing) the bins will have to be stored at the front of the houses, where there is little space and they are unsightly. The initial response from Cllr Garrod was given in August Green Coffee - see HERE. Here is some additional information from Cllr Garrod:
  • a new policy on ‘assisted collection’ is being developed in consultation with various representative groups, including the Merton Centre for Independent Living.
  • there is an annual review mechanism for requesting changes or improvements to the services.
6. Any Use for old Calendars?
Cathy asked whether some colourful old calendars could be used. Cathy was put in touch with Nightingale House, Wandsworth which might use them or advised to contact a local school.


7. Crossrail 2
Initially residents of Merton were given one option for the new Crossrail 2 station and track and this was rejected by many people. Alan has been working with the Wimbledon Society to look at several options that might be more acceptable see the excellent report HERE  The main options put forward to TfL are:
  • the SWIRL - the existing fast lines go into a tunnel at New Malden and go under Wimbledon Station, freeing up two platforms in Wimbledon Station
  • underground terminus - a new deep level station to serve either fast trains of existing lines (no passenger access) OR the new Crossrail 2 lines (with passenger access).
Meanwhile, WEHRA (Wimbledon East Hillside Residents Association) and Sustainable Merton conducted a survey of 200 or so Wimbledon residents to see what sort of town centre they would like - see the results of the survey 'What Wimbledon Residents Want' HERE. People asked for better quality pedestrian areas and shops, improved traffic flow, a coordinated approach to development and more green spaces.

The sustainability features requested included mature trees in new builds, reduced local flooding, better air quality, a maximum of 8 levels for buildings, good insulation of new build, new green spaces, solar panels on all buildings and installation of rain and grey water harvesting systems.

Consultation on the next proposals from TfL will be in the autumn. Friends of Wimbledon Town Centre have been keeping residents up to date on Crossrail 2 - see the latest leaflet HERE. Sign up to receive email updates HERE.

Both above-mentioned papers were presented on 8th Sept in a very well attended meeting in St Andrew's church about Crossrail 2.

8. Colliers Wood Residents to use Speed Cameras!
Following the new junctions around the tower and the Priory Centre, the congestion on Colliers Wood High Street has become worse. This has led to more rat running along Park Rd. The local Safer Neighbourhood Team asked police to use speed guns to deter speeding. The police is now inviting members of the public to join them and have a go at using the speed camera. So this is community participation! See the article on WimbledonSW19 HERE.

9. Air Quality Data 2015
Tom K had a reply from Merton Council's Environmental Health, saying the 2015 figures for air quality will be available later this year. Tom will let us know when he has them.

Christine reported that the Air Quality app from King's College shows real time information on air quality. It is quite clear that the main roads are much more polluted than side roads. Find the App for tablets and smartphones HERE.


Food, Gardening & Green Spaces

10. Food Waste
We are looking for ways to reduce food waste in Merton. An excellent idea to set up a community fridge was put forward. This is somewhere that people can leave excess food and take food they need. In an existing scheme down in Somerset, it is open 8am - 8pm every day and Gregg's and M&S are donating food to this. A team of volunteers checks out the fridge, removing old food and keeping the fridge clean. All we need is a location, a fridge, volunteers ... and someone to champion this idea. Find out more HERE.

11. Don't Judge a Pear by it's Skin
This has been a poor year for fruit - poor crops and much of the fruit looks discoloured and pitted. Pears picked recently by Abundance were blackened and unpleasant looking. However, Joanna found that when peeled, the pears were of good quality and had a lovely flavour.

12. A Very Warm Day Out
Joanna visited the botanic gardens at Ventnor, in the Isle of Wight. Cactuses and other sub-tropical plants are now being grown outside and are flourishing! This is helped by the micro-climate of these gardens being 5 degrees warmer than the mainland UK - along with the impact of climate change. The warmer climate was also noted in a report that bananas had been grown and ripened in Sheffield - see HERE.

13. Green Flag awards to five parks
Keep Britain Tidy has awarded five of Merton’s parks a Green Flag, the UK-wide award for the best public and community parks and green space. The borough’s award-winning parks this year are Sir Joseph Hood Memorial Playing Fields, Colliers Wood Rec, South Park Gardens, John Innes Park and Dundonald Rec. With the maintenance of parks being contracted out, these 5 awards provide a good baseline which future care of parks can be measured against. The Landscape Group was selected as the preferred bidder for this contract. 

Events & publications

14. All About Ethical Investment
Trinity United Reformed Church welcomes all to discuss ethical investment on 29th Sept. Two distinguished ethical investment professionals will answer questions such as what is a sustainable investment and do ethical investors lose out. The speakers are James Featherby who advises the Archbishop of Canterbury and Wimbledon resident Nick Robins who co-directs the United Nations' Environment Programme Inquiry into global sustainable finance. Find out more HERE. Find details of the meeting below - under EVENTS. You need to register if you want to go, by contacting or

15. UWRA newsletter

The Union of Wimbledon Residents' Associations produces an informative newsletter, summarising news and events around Wimbledon - so it is another place for publicising local events. UWRA is an umbrella group for residents' associations in the Wimbledon part of the borough. The new chairman is Clive Hilton who is now part of the Green Coffee & Abundance networks.

16. Future of the Natural Environment
Last month we reported on this important Environment Audit Committee consultation, looking at the impact of Brexit on the natural environment. Christine has asked the Soil Association if they would engage with the consultation. Alan agreed to take a look at it, before the closure of the consultation on 9th Sept.

17. Wimbledon Common Nature Club
This wonderful club for children is held on the first Sunday of the month - see REGULAR EVENTS below for details. At the next meeting on 2nd Oct, children will learn to identify trees and make things with leaves. However, more volunteers are needed to keep this group running. Please get in touch with Auriel at if you'd like to help.

18. Walk4Life
Jane recommends the fortnightly Walk4Life on Wimbledon Common every second Tuesday mornings, led by one of the Commons rangers. Find out the dates of this and other Walk4Life walks HERE.

Other Things Local

19. A Green Coffee Wedding!
Green Coffee members sent a huge congratulations to Charles and Alix on their recent wedding. The wedding speech actually mentioned how Charles had met lots of lovely people at Green Coffee and is now working with some of them in the various groups he is involved with around Merton. See some lovely wedding photos HERE

20. YMCA - consultation
Give your views on the future of the YMCA in Wimbledon Broadway. The YMCA aims to provide a safe place to stay for young people, to encourage community health and wellbeing and to give support for children and families and advice and education for all. You can see what others think and input your own ideas HERE

21. Green Coffee welcomes New Member
We were delighted to welcome Rowena to the Green Coffee group. She is a very active member of various local groups including WEHRA, the Safer Neighbourhood Panel for Hillside and Merton UNA. Rowena reported that unfortunately the UNA Car Boot Sale got rained off - but they were still able to make donations to UNICEF and UN Refugees. She also showed everyone a staple-less stapler and demonstrated how it really does keep sheets of paper together! This was a Harinacs stapleless stapler, made by Kokuyo of Japan.

22. Delegation sees local MP re. Trident
As part of the mass 'Stop Trident' lobby of parliament, Joanna and Tom met with Mitcham and Morden MP Siobhan McDonagh to convey their concerns about plans to renew Trident. Tom highlighted the estimated £205bn that Trident would cost and Joanna gave Siobhan the International Campaign Against Nuclear Weapon's report, summarising progress at the UN. Find out more HERE.

23. Theresa May & the Climate Change Agreement
Last month, Juliet told us that she had written to Theresa May, reminding her of when she became a governor at Bishop Gilpin School and urging her to ratify the Paris climate change agreement. Juliet received a reply from her office, saying that the Department for
Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy would respond. Meanwhile, China and the US have agreed to ratify the agreement - so maybe he UK will be next.

24. Green Coffee's Got Saxophonist Talent!
Cathy and Alan are part of a saxophone quartet that plays at charitable events and good causes such as care homes, hospitals, birthday parties. They play all types of music from Broadway to classical, jazz and popular. To book this wonderful group or find out more, please contact Alan on 020 8543 5590 or See more HERE.


Fri 16th 11am-8pm & Sat 17th Sep 10am-5pm
2016 Quilt Show
Mansel Rd Centre, Trinity United Reformed Church  SW19 4AA
Wimbledon International Quilters are holding their annual sale show and sale of quilting work, fabric, books and more. Raising funds for DEBRA - the charity for people whose skin does not work. Quilt raffle. Tea Room. Admission £3. For more info, contact Margaret Read at

Sat 17th Sept  11am-2pm

St Mark's Church garden & hall
Lots of jams, chutneys, fruit sweets & cakes, lovely fresh juice from the fruit press, ‘Longest Peel’ and other games for children and adults. Featuring the International Ukulele Orchestra. We need lots of donations of jam, cake or plants. Please contact For more details see the website - HERE.

Sat 17th Sept from 10.30am

Saturday Scrub Bashers
meet at Windmill Car Park (near the bike racks)
Join this volunteer group to clear scrub from Wimbledon Common's heathland. Pete Haldane, Wimbledon & Putney Commons Conservation and Engagement Officer, provides all the tools and gloves needed. If you'd like to join in, please do contact him by e-mail or call on 020 8788 7655. So get involved with this valuable conservation work - and keep fit!

Thurs 22nd to Sun 25th Sept
CONFERENCE: One Earth, One Humanity, One Future

Worcester College, Oxford
A three-day special event celebrating the environmental magazine Resurgence's 50th anniversary. Over 50 speakers will share their ground-breaking solutions relating to climate change, ecology, etc. Find out more and book HERE

Sun 25th Sept
Wandle Park
Meet up at 11am at Colliers Wood tube station. Or else later in Wandle Park. Bottles and cans will be recycled. For more information, please contact Tom at

Thurs 29th Sept  doors open 7.30pm, starts 8pm
DISCUSSION: ethical investment
Trinity URC, Mansel Rd, Wimbledon SW19 4AA

If you are interested in how ethical investment works and what progress has been made, then come along to this meeting. Please
register if you want to go, by contacting or The excellent speakers of global influence are:

James Featherby - chair of Church of England ethical investment advisory group
Nick Robins  - co-director, UN Environment Programme’s Inquiry into the design of a Sustainable Financial System.

Sat 1st October  10.30am to 12.30pm
Bring & Buy Sale

Coach House, Melrose Rd
This is the John Innes autumn sale. Compost, bulbs, autumn/winter bedding plants, shrubs and perennials, garden produce, jams and chutneys will be on sale.
Please support us with your presence and enjoy our delicious coffee and cakes. If you can help in any way please contact Ann Redfearn (tel 020 8286 9983). Free entry.

Sat 8th Oct
Autumn Fair
Organised by Colliers Wood Residents' Association. Residents are encouraged to grow their own fruit and veg and enter it for judging at the event. Also a Bake Off and a Barn Dance. Find more details HERE

Sun 9th Oct
Jumble Trail
SW18, Wandsworth
Join in and sell your unwanted stuff - or come along and buy! Situated at various locations around SW18. Jumble fans, reuse advocates and vintage gem searchers, sign up for a FREE stall outside your house on to turn your unwanted items into £££! Households in the SW18 1/2/3 postcode areas are inside the circle or just come down and browse for fantastic bargains and meet some of your neighbours. Find the map HERE. See the latest info HERE

24th - 29th Oct

FoE: week of fracking action
Barclay's Bank owns Third Energy, the company which is planning to frack in beautiful North Yorkshire.

Regular Events  

first Mondays  7.30pm
Wimbledon Beekeepers' Association
The Snuff Mill, Morden Hall Park, Morden Hall Road, Morden SM4 5JD
The Wimbledon Division of the Surrey Beekeepers' Association is an organisation of Beekeepers, who operate in the London Borough of Merton and its surrounding areas.  Each year, they organise beginners’ courses and a variety of educational and social events for members.

fortnightly Tuesdays on Wim Common - other dates elsewhere
various locations
Get fit and be sociable.
Regular Walk4Life organised walks around Merton. Find out the dates and locations of Walk4Life walks HERE.

on hold at present!
Green Drinks
The location of Green Drinks is under review. Watch out for new information on where and when.

every Wednesday morning 10am - early afternoon
Phipp’s Bridge Community Allotment
Join Gillian and her friendly group to grow fruit and vegetables. Disused land has been turned into a productive garden through people working together. You are welcome to join in, regardless of your gardening expertise - and you'll have the opportunity to take home some lovely fresh produce. If you would like to come and have a look or get involved, then please contact  Gillian at Find out more HERE

every Wednesday at 10.30 am

Merton Green Parents
Coffee in the Wood, 99 High Street, Colliers Wood
How do you balance the demands of being a parent and leading a more sustainable life? It can sometimes be difficult. Merton Green Parents provides a place to swap sustainable parenting tips and meet other like-minded parents. To join the group and for information about meet up times, visit the Merton Green Parents Facebook page  or follow them on twitter @MGreenParents.

meetings suspended

Merton Friends of the Earth - Monthly Meet Up
William Morris House, 267 The Broadway, Wimbledon SW19 1SD
Meetings have been suspended forthwith. Enquiries:

first Thursday of the month at 8.00pm
Merton Cycling Campaign meeting
All Saints Centre, All Saints Road, SW19 1BX
Meet other cyclists, find out about rides and other events and the latest on campaigns. No meeting in August. Please contact Charles, Borough Coordinator Merton Cycling Campaign tel. 8949 0708 or email  or see website HERE for more details.

third Thursdays   from 7pm

Morden Hall Park Nature Group
Snuff Mill Education Centre, Morden Hall Park
Find out more about the animals, vegetables and minerals found in Morden Hall Park. Or else share your knowledge with other like-minded people? The meeting is open to anyone interested in the work of the Nature Group. Find out more HERE or email

every Friday 10-12am
Colliers Wood Community Garden
at the back of Christ Church Hall, in Colliers Wood SW19 2NY
Join local volunteers at the weekly workday to help with general maintenance and upkeep of the garden. For more information, please contact Lesley via Or contact Tom at

second Fridays   from 9.00 - 11am

John Innes Gardening Group
JI Gardening Group is currently meeting every second Friday of the month. Meet up by the mulberry tree. Bring secateurs and a trowel. For more information, please contact 

every Friday & Sunday  11am - 4pm

May Project Gardens
159 Middleton Rd, Morden  SM4 6RW
Join Ian and the team. Very friendly gardening group, music, training and lots of other activities too. To volunteer or find out more, 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 out more HERE


first Sundays  from 10am - 12 noon
Wimbledon Common Nature Club
Information Centre in Wimbledon Common
Fantastic nature club for children 6-14 years. Different topics covered each month e.g. pond dipping, shelter building, fungi foray and nature walks.
For more information, please contact Auriel Glanville, Club Leader, on 020 8540 6154 or

first Sundays
Friends of Ravensbury Park - Workday
meet at the bridge over the Wandle in the middle of the park at 10am
Help is needed to give your local park a general cleanup. Tools and refreshments provided. Sessions usually last about 3 hours, but please just come for as long as you like. For more information, call Jane tel. 07773 406 105.

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