Green Coffee                  Oct  2014
Hello All

October Green Coffee was another excellent meeting with lots to talk about. So thanks to everyone for coming along.

We heard about a big tree planting initiative in Colliers Wood, the latest from the Abundance Fruit Day event and what to do with any old stamp collections, as well as lots more. Find out what was discussed below.

Since then, it was announced that Leigh's vision for Wimbledon town centre (including some ideas from Green Coffee) has won the Future Wimbledon Creative Communities prize! We'll no doubt hear more about it at Nov Green Coffee.

Also, Juliet has now fixed a date for screening "Trashed" at HMV Curzon - this wonderful film starring Jeremy Irons explores what happens to waste and how authorities are often not dealing with it properly.

Please remember to collect your coffee packaging and bring it along to next Green Coffee. This will be at 9.30-11am on Tues 4th Nov at The Gooseberry Bush, 115 Kingston Rd - the one after is on 2nd December, same time and place.

Things to do now!
  • With autumn leaves falling everywhere, it's a struggle to keep drains from blocking. You can help by putting street leaves into your compost bin (if you have one) and not sweeping leaves into the gutters.

Download newsletters from:
Sustainable Merton  HERE
Colliers Wood Residents Association HERE


October Green Coffee - topics


Recycling & Waste

    1. More bins needed in Myrna Close
    2. Latex Gloves & Burns Dressings

    3. Donate your old stamp collection

    4. Food waste now collected in all schools

Gardening & Green Spaces

    5. Kendor Garden          

    6. Colliers Wood – tree planting

    7. Colliers Wood Community Garden

    8. Umbrella group for Friends of Parks?

    9. A big load of manure


Energy News

   10. The Green Deal - fund closed

   11. Big London Energy Switch


The Built Environment

   12. Redevelopment in Cavendish Rd
   13. Party for the FINISHED Bridge               

   14. The PassivHaus - still time to comment
   15. Swift Boxes at Dundonald School

   16. Developments in Wimbledon Park  


Books, Films & Events

   17. "This Changes Everything"

   18. "Trashed"

   19. Make your own Shopping Bag


Other things local

   20. A good day at Abundance Fruit Day

   21. Cycling in Merton talks                              

   22. GC member may stand for parliament     
   23. Chef & Gardener needed at Age UK

   24. Southfields Harvest - a success

   25. Another Micro-Brewery for Wimbledon  


Out and About

   26. GC members join Climate Change March

What's On?

10.11 from 6.30pm
Meet Met Police Chief
Merton Civic Centre

11.11 to 16.11
Help to plant trees
Wandle Park

14.11  10.30-12.30am
Make a Shopping Bag
Stitch-up, Arthur Rd

22.11  10am - 4pm
Macmillan Xmas Fair
Christ Church Hall SW20

4.12 6.30-9pm
FILM: 'Trashed'
HMV Curzon 

Find past issues of Green Coffee Update HERE


October Green Coffee - news


Recycling & Waste

1. More Bins needed for Myrna Close

At Myrna Close Nature Reserve, Joanna reported that the water quality in the pond now seemed good. However, the rubbish lying around the area and in the pond was terrible and bins were overflowing with rubbish. It was suggested that installing solar bins may help. Also, if the LWT looks after the area, then they may help tidy it up.

POST MEETING NOTE It seems that the bins get emptied monthly. Joanna has contacted Green Spaces at the council to bring their attention to the problem.

 2. Latex Gloves & Burns Dressings

Hilary brought some small surplus latex gloves. Green Coffee members were keen to use those for gardening projects and bike maintenance for children.
Please get in touch with Green Coffee if you can use some facial burns dressings, soaked in aloe vera.

3. Donate your old Stamp Collection

Not many charities take stamps these days, but 'Embrace the Middle East' do collect them. So if you have a stamp collection and don’t know what to do with it, then why not send it to them? Find out more about this charity, what sort of stamps they are looking for and where to send them HERE

4. Food waste now collected in all schools

Food waste collection has now been extended to all primary and secondary schools in Merton. Find more information HERE.



Gardening & Green Spaces

5. Kendor Gardens

This is the strip of land between Dorset Rd and Kenley Rd. The soil is quite shallow as the tunnel for underground trains to Morden is just below the surface. However, it needs to be looked after, so that people can keep using the area and access is maintained. There is a photo of Kendor Gardens on the Love Merton Park website HERE.

6. Colliers Wood – tree planting

Keith and Making Colliers Wood Happy are taking delivery of 420 trees from The Woodlands Trust. They will be planted next month (Armistice Day 11th Nov – 16th Nov) in the Wandle Park, at the back near the river. The varieties (rowan, silver birch, dogwood etc.) will give all year round colour to the area. The plan is to plant about 70 trees each day and then a field of poppies around the wooded area. Find more details below under EVENTS.
Help is needed with providing refreshments, digging holes and mulching. Please get in touch with Keith at or phone 07982 721 496 if you can come. Volunteers have already been recruited from local residents, schoolchildren and the Aymadiyya Mosque (which has a target to plant 1 million trees). Keith will contact the Tree Wardens to see if tools can be borrowed.

7. Colliers Wood Community Garden

This is now a Sustainable Merton project and Keith is managing the budget. People can just drop in to do a bit of gardening. Also it is hoped to run classes in gardening, cookery and healthy living - funding is being sought from Merton Partnership for this. If you'd like to find out more, then please contact Keith at or phone 07982 721 496. Find out when this group meets below under REGULARS below

8. Umbrella Group for Friends of Parks?

There is a meeting of “Friends of” parks groups this evening at the Civic Centre organised by the council’s Green Spaces area. It is hoped that an umbrella group will be formed to improve information exchange. 

POST MEETING NOTE: Following the meeting, a questionnaire was set up to find out what support there is for an umbrella group, who would like to participate and what ideas people have. So if you'd like to have your say, then fill in the questionnaire HERE by 5th Nov.


9. A big load of manure

Joanna took delivery of 50 sacks of horse manure! Many of those have been passed onto neighbours and friends. Joanna found that the horse manure does rot down well either by adding it to the compost heap, alternating with layers of grass cuttings. Or by keeping it in the sack, puncturing it to let the rain in – this will heat up and turn into compost, but it will take longer (about a year). If you'd like some free horse manure, then contact Julia at The Ridgway Stables through the website contact form HERE


Energy News

10. The Green Deal

Polly reported that the Green Deal Home Improvement Fund has now closed as the money has all been used up. It’s expected that a new fund will be announced soon. It’s encouraging that there has been a demand for funding to spend on energy improvement measures. Find the list of measures that were eligible for funding under the scheme HERE
As a qualified assessor, Laura (Polly's colleague) can conduct two types of surveys. Firstly, the Energy Performance Certificate, which is needed whenever a home is sold. Secondly, the Green Deal Assessment, which provides advice on how to reduce energy use by making changes to the house and to how people live in it.

11. Big London Energy Switch

Merton residents are being encouraged to join up. The idea is that by coming together, people can get a better deal from the energy companies. The deadline for signing up is 13th Oct, but keep an eye on the website HERE as there are likely to be further opportunities. It was pointed out that this scheme focuses on lowering bills and there is no green energy option.


The Built Environment

12. Redevelopment in Cavendish Rd

There are plans to knock down the block at the end of Cavendish Rd and rebuild it to include 60 new properties and a library. The development company is planning a presentation and will ask people for their input. As there is no mention of sustainability in the developer’s literature, Keith asked what points he should bring up. Suggestions included asking for a high level of energy efficiency, perhaps to PassivHaus standards; water collection and recycling; solar panels on the roof; provision of gardens, including a garden space at the library; recycling facilities.

POST MEETING NOTE: The checklist for sustainable buildings HERE was extracted from Leigh's comments on the YMCA development - published in Dec 2013 Green Coffee Update. The checklist could be sent to this and other big developers to encourage sustainable features from the earliest stages in design.

13. Party for the Finished Bridge !

The footbridge linking Bewley Rd and Wandle Meadow Nature Park has now been completed - 9 years after the planned completion date. Colliers Wood Residents’ Association is planning a party on the bridge to celebrate!


14. The PassivHaus - maybe still time to comment

At the time of the meeting, there is no information on progress. Joyce reported that she had submitted a letter in support of the application (see it HERE), but it was not displayed on the website. She will contact the planning office to make sure that her letter is taken into account.
POST MEETING NOTE: It seems the application (14/P3132) will be decided by the Planning Committee, probably at the next meeting on 13th November.  So if anyone would like to comment on the application, there is probably still time to send in a letter. You can find out how to submit comments HERE.


15. Swift boxes for Dundonald school?

The new school building is now going ahead, so it’s important to make the best of it. It was suggested that swift bricks are included – swifts can nest in these hollow bricks if they are placed high up in a building. Find more information HERE. In Islington, any new build above a certain height must include swift bricks and it would be good if Merton did the same. The governing body of Dundonald School seems interested in adopting the idea.

16. Developments in Wimbledon Park

The butcher shop in Arthur Rd closed recently and the fear is that the beautiful tiled frontage and interior will be lost. So we ought to keep abreast of what is happening there.
There are plans to build a new dog racing stadium or a football stadium in Plough Lane. There are mixed feelings amongst local residents about which option they prefer.

Books, Films and Events

17. "This Changes Everything"

Juliet recommends “This Changes Everything” by Naomi Klein. In this book, Naomi argues very eloquently that climate change requires a change in the power structures. We have the technology but currently, the interplay between big business and government means that we are not making the right decisions. Changing the power structures would not only benefit our response to climate change, but would make our lives better in so many other ways. Find a review HERE.

18. Trashed

Juliet is proposing that the film “Trashed”, starring Jeremy Irons is screened at HMV Curzon. She has asked for the support of Sustainable Merton and the council. This is a fantastic film looking at how trash is poisoning our oceans, our air, our land, our cities, and us. It focusses on how even now many local authorities, e.g. New York city, are not taking taking trash and the need to recycle seriously.  Please get in touch with Juliet if you’d like to help get a local screening at

POST MEETING NOTE: HMV Curzon has agreed to show the film on 4th Dec - find more details below under EVENTS.

19. Make your own shopping bag

Juliet is holding a bag-making session on Friday 14th November. This will be in the morning from 10.30am - 12.30pm at Stitch-up, the craft shop in Arthur Rd. The Mors Bag template will be used and people can bring their own fabric or choose from a range of beautiful fabrics at the event. There will be a £5 charge and booking is essential. See the poster HERE. Find full details under EVENTS below. Information about the nationwide Mors Bag initiative is at To book, contact


Other things Local

20. A good day at Abundance Fruit Day

Green Coffee members reported a successful Abundance Fruit Day. Juliet oversaw the pressing of 50 litres of apple juice, before running out of fruit. With such an early season, some other Abundance groups cancelled their apple pressing event because of lack of fruit, so we did well to go ahead at all! Charles had an excellent day selling plants, home-made ginger beer and providing people with information about what's going on in the borough. Keith encouraged people to sing along to the International Ukelele Orchestra and Alice charmed the visitors with her spinning wheel, range of vegetable dyed wools and knitted woolly hats. (Alice knitted a hat for Charles, made with wool from rare breed sheep and dyed a beautiful shade of blue using woad grown at her allotment.)

The event raised £1212 - most of this will be used to keep the Abundance project going and excess money will be donated to a local charity (Merton & Morden Guild received a donation of £100 following last year's Fruit Day.)

Find an excellent Wimbledon Guardian article about the day HERE. Also see some of the paintings and drawings from the Abundant Art activity HERE This includes a photo of the display of Abundant Art in Elys window.

21. Cycling in Merton - talks

Charles will be representing Merton Cycling Campaign at a meeting this week with the Cabinet member for Merton’s Environment, Cllr Andrew Judge. The development of a strategy to promote walking and cycling will be discussed.


22. Green Coffee member may stand for parliament

Charles announced that he is putting his name forward to become a Green Party candidate for next year’s general election. Green Coffee members congratulated Charles for being prepared to stand.


23. Chef & Gardener/Handyman needed at Age UK

Age UK is advertising two positions. Firstly, a part-time chef (2 hours a day, Mon-Fri) to provide nutritious lunches for about 15 people. Secondly, a full-time gardener/handyman to provide practical support to people in their homes, including energy efficiency checks. Find out more HERE

24. Southfields Harvest

This was the first event of its kind held by Abundance Southfields, which Abundance Wimbledon helped to set up last year. Alice attended with her spinning wheel. There were jams and cakes being sold, as well as local sausages and a vegetable monsters competition. Anyone could join the knitting group and learn how to knit squares for a blanket – it was popular. See some photos of the event HERE


25. A new Micro-Brewery in Wimbledon

There are plans for a micro-brewery in South Wimbledon/Colliers Wood. Earlier this year, Abundance had been in talks about growing hops around Merton to make a truly local brew. The William Morris pub already has a micro-brewery in the old Mamma Rosa premises in Merton Abbey Mills.

Out and About

26. Green Coffee Members join Climate Change March

Green Coffee members Charles, Juliet, Tom, Ruth and Joanna were all at the march through central London with 40,000 others, including many young people and families with babies.



Mon 10th Nov,
from 6.30pm
Meet Bernard Hogan-Howe
Merton Civic Centre

This is your opportunity to question the head of London's police service - Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe. Merton's borough commander Mark Lawrence will also be on the platform, with the meeting chair - Richard Tracey, our London Assembly Member. All residents  from Merton Sutton and Wandsworth are invited to this meeting.

Tues 11th (from 11am) to Sun 16th Nov
Help to plant trees

Wandle Park, at the back near the river

Organised by "Making Colliers Wood Happy". Come and help local residents, schoolchildren and volunteers from the Amydiyya community to plant 420 trees. Help is needed with providing refreshments, digging holes and mulching.  Planting times are as follows:

Tues 11th Nov (Armistice Day)    from 11am
Wed 12th - Sun 16th                   from 9.30am - 12.30pm

Please get in touch with Keith at or phone 07982 721 496 if you can come. Find out more HERE

Fri 14th Nov 10.30-12.30
Make Your Own Shopping Bag
Stitch-up, 130 Arthur Rd, Wimbledon Park

Come along and join this friendly group. Learn some basic sewing techniques or help others to do so. Pay £5 for the session. Bring your own fabric or select from the range provided. You must book for this by calling Juliet on tel. 8946 2514 or email See the poster
HERE. Find the venue HERE.

Fri 22nd Nov  10am-4pm
Macmillan Merton Christmas Fair
Christ Church Hall, Copse Hill, Wimbledon SW20 0HG

A variety of stalls offering competitively priced clothing, shoes, jewellery, gourmet food and gifts for all the family, not forgetting a delicious cake stall. Free refreshments. £3 entry. More information at 020 8879 3925 or HERE 

Thurs 4th Dec 6.30pm - 9pm
FILM: ‘Trashed’
HMV Curzon SW19 1RE

Starring Jeremy Irons. This films looks as what happens to waste and how some authorities are not dealing with it properly. This enjoyable and thought-provoking film will be followed by an opportunity for discussions. More details will follow about invited speakers.
Contact for more information. 



every Wed 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

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. Please contact Charles, Borough Coordinator Merton Cycling Campaign tel. 8949 0708 or email for more details.

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.

Coffee in the Wood has cakes from local bakers, nice coffee and sometimes live music! It is also a Recycling Point for baby wipes and baby food packets.

Second Fridays   from 9.30 - 11am
John Innes Gardening Group

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

Second Saturday  10am - 2pm (February - November only)
The Windmill Market
St Mark's Church, behind Wimbledon Library   SW19 7ND

The local market in the centre of Wimbledon. A range of food and crafts from local businesses and artisans. Now free entry. To find out more or to book a food or craft stall, please contact

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

Join Keith, Nick, Peter and friends for some gardening. Also workshops on cookery and healthy living. For more information, contact or call Keith at 07982 721 496

First Mondays of the month 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.
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