Green Coffee
You are invited to Green Coffee on Tues 7th May at the the GOOSEBERRY BUSH (115 Kingston Rd   SW19 1LT) from 9.30 to 11am. It's on the corner of Kingston Rd and Palmerston Rd - not far from South Wimbledon Tube, the Merton Park Tram stop and Wimbledon Station. There is parking for 6 bikes and wheelchair accessible. Find a map HERE. The following Green Coffee is on June 4th - so please put it in your diary.
 
At April Green Coffee, we heard about the new Project Dirt website and the benefits it can offer groups, including the possibility of seeing up a Merton Cluster. Find more about this and everything else we talked about below.


                               ****

And don't forget to come along to UPCYCLING WIMBLEDON - this Saturday !
It starts off with the UPCYCLING FAIR - lots of stalls highlighting upcycling ideas. Then Green Coffee' inspired FESTIVAL OF IDEAS - your opportunity to spend a bit more time discussing ideas for making Wimbledon better and greener. Find more info below. Hope to see you there !

                                                                     ****


Would you like to make community food growing happen in Wimbledon?
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 joycepountain@virginmedia.com. This is a voluntary role and you will get support from TTW and its various networks. There are two potential community garden sites and the council is offering plots of land around the borough for food growing. So there are lots of options and there's plenty of scope to make this project your own!

Free Horse Manure
At the Ridgway Stables in Wimbledon Village. It's already bagged for collection - but please remember not to put fresh manure straight onto your crops. It needs to rot for several months. For info call 8946 7400 

Can you help at the mini-Bioblitz at Kingston University? 
Put your knowledge of insects, freshwater wildlife, botany, birds or fungi/lichen to a great use. Help people find and identify fauna and flora in woodland, pond and grassland on Sat 4th May 10am-4pm. Travel expenses and lunch provided. Find out more from Rachel at rachel.burgess8@btinternet.com

Topics at April Green Coffee

1. Project Dirt Special
2. Centre Court
3. Be Neighbourly Survey
4. Upcycling Wimbledon & Festival of Green Ideas
5. Beetroot Books
6. Dig Merton
7. Chelsea Fringe
8. Sustainable Architecture
9. Green Square
10. Wool against Weapons
11. Myrna Close & Computer Help
12. Tamworth Farm Allotments
13. Trees
14. Friends of the Earth – Merton relaunch & Deen CF
15. Climate Change cut from the National Curriculum

Find past copies of the Green Coffee Update HERE

What's On?
(find more details at foot of email)

THIS EVENING
8pm onwards
Green Drinks
Hand & Racquet


20.4  11am-2pm
Upcycling Wimbledon
St Mark's   SW19 7ND


20.4  2 - 3.30pm
Festival of Ideas
St Mark's   SW19 7ND


29.4  2-4pm
Make your own Bag
St Mark's SW19 7ND

4.5  10.30am-3pm
Kitchen Gardening

Deen City Farm

11.5  10am-2pm
Windmill Market
St Mark's  SW19 7ND

11.5  10am-4pm
Plant Sale

Christ Church  SW20

18.5 
Economics Mythsbuster

online course

18.5  11am-2pm
Fete of the Earth
St Mark's  SW19 7ND

18.5  10.30am - 12.30pm
Plant Sale

John Innes  SW19 3HW

19.5   10.30-11.30 & 1-5pm
Friends of the Earth - relaunch

Deen City Farm  

All Topics at April Green Coffee 


1. Project Dirt Special - the new website

Until 4 years ago, there were lots of groups around London doing green things but they were not working together or sharing good practice. So Mark and Nick set up Project Dirt in their spare time. (Mark also works as a Chartered Surveyor advising people on how to buy and sell their shops.) Since then, Project Dirt has grown (through word of mouth and predominately in London) into a large network with over 7000 members and 1000 projects. It is starting to rollout around the country and it currently employs staff, interns and volunteers.
Project Dirt helps people and projects (ie groups) do the following:
  • Get connected
  • Get resources – such as grants from councils and support from green companies
  • Attract new people e.g. for TTW gardens or to join the Bee Lovely cluster
  • Focus on getting involved in green activity (rather than setting up websites)
The website has been completely revamped recently. It took a painstaking 18 months to get this done. The site is now more dynamic like Facebook and has lots of new facilities. It can do the following:

a. Build a cluster
An organization can now build its own network i.e. cluster. This is free for people and community groups, but there is a charge for larger organisations that can pay - i.e. companies, Local Authorities etc. The Mayor of London now has networks for Capital Growth and for Capital Cleanup. Neal’s Yard has set up (and paid for) the Bee Lovely cluster  - you can choose to follow this. The National Trust and Morden Hall Park are also interested in setting up clusters.

b. Geographic clusters                     
When people join PD, they input their postcode and they will automatically join their local geographical cluster e.g. a Merton cluster. Setting up a Merton cluster would bring the following benefits:
  • a network is established on Day 1
  • the cluster will automatically include all Merton environmental/sustainable groups with Project Dirt pages
  • access to resources: funding, volunteers
  • access to reporting tools: tracking events and projects (this is currently being scoped and built)
  • improves your visibility
  • allows two way conversation and avoids long and multiple email lists
  • a more coherent way of influencing policy at borough level
c. Regional and local clusters.
London is a cluster and local (sub-borough) clusters can also be set up. Currently Merton has the following local cluster options (and we need to have a discussion to see if these are the right sub-borough areas).
  • Colliers Wood
  • Mitcham
  • Morden
  • Raynes Park
  • Wimbledon
d. You can elect to follow any cluster you like and you can un-follow a cluster too.

e. If there is no Merton cluster, you can still search for things happening in Merton or for particular activities e.g. the Green Deal.

f. A Cluster page has the following:
  • At the top – how to get help
  • Below - Projects; Events; People involved; Journals & Gallery e.g. for the Chelsea Fringe; Newsfeed (keeping you up to date on the latest activity from across that cluster network)
g. To use Project Dirt, you must set up an account. 
You will automatically receive a weekly email, highlighting features and events in London, but you can opt out of this if you like.

To set up an account: 
        Go to the Project Dirt webpage.
        Along the top line, there is CREATE ACCOUNT.
        Select this and input your details

h. To find out how the new Project Dirt works, see HERE for more information and some really helpful videos demonstrating how to do things. Also, the Project Dirt team is happy to answer any queries, so do use the ‘contact us’ button to contact them.

i. Retrieving old information
If you want to look at information on the old Project Dirt website, then see HERE You can find all the old events, projects and blogs – so nothing has been lost in the switchover.

j. By logging onto the My Profile page, you can see the following:
  • Your list of friends – you can ask new people to be your friend (they will be notified of this) and you can “un-friend” people (they will not be notified of this).
  • Your projects
  • Your events
  • Newsfeed – this is where you find what your friends, project and events have been doing
  • Journals & Gallery – this is where you can update people about a project or event and show your photos, add videos etc.
k. Everyone joining Project Dirt is welcomed and vetted, to avoid organisations/individuals using PD for the wrong purposes. Businesses wanting to join are asked how they will benefit the community w.r.t giving grants, providing volunteers, knowledge and training. Project Dirt avoids getting involved in politics and so at present political parties are not able to join.

l. To set up a cluster:
  • Call a meeting + decide who will run the cluster
  • Agree on several administrators
  • Decide on what it will contain and how often it will be updated e.g. the journal could go out fortnightly
  • Project Dirt will allocate an intern to help administer your cluster, decide on a weekly action plan (which events to highlight, how/when journal gets updated) and see that things get done
  • 7 or more projects are needed to form a cluster
 Green Coffee members were asked if they are members of Project Dirt/likely to join it. Around 9 people said they would and 3 said they wouldn’t. The reasons giving for not joining were: time constraints; too much information; too technical. There was a concern that too much reliance on using Project Dirt to disseminate information would mean that some people would be excluded. So we should consider alternative ways of communicating with people.

It was agreed that any Merton Cluster on Project Dirt should be an additional/complementary network and existing information flows should continue to operate as before. A Merton Cluster would help spread information to existing networks and the information would then be cascaded down to members in the usual way. Physical meetings such as Green Coffee should continue as they provide a way of reaching people and discussing issues that is not possible online. Another concern was the need to keep people interested, as too often things are set up and then people lose interest.

 ** If you have any ideas or want to get involved in initial discussions about setting up a Merton Cluster, please get in touch with Joyce at joycepountain@virginmedia.com **


Setting up a Merton Cluster
Following Green Coffee, some of us stayed behind for Mark’s demonstration of the new Project Dirt website and discussion of how to set up our own cluster. 

We agreed on the following:
a. Mark is going to send through some points about a Merton cluster - what needs to be done to administer a cluster; what we get out of it.
b. Sustainable Merton, in particular the media group, will decide if they want to have a cluster on PD and if they want to lead on it. If they do, then an administrative group should be set up and this should include groups from across Merton.
c. The rest of us will think about who we would want to see in an administrative group. As well as SM and Green Coffee, it was suggested that we should involve the MVSC, Merton Council and Merton Chamber of Commerce. But we should also involve groups like John Innes, residents' associations and Friends of groups, other green groups.
d. Contact potential participants, sell the idea of a Merton cluster and get an administrative group together.
e. Administrative group meets to decide the following:
  • what the cluster will look like
  • who will do what w.r.t administration
  • put together a plan for encouraging groups to sign up to Project Dirt (they have to input their post code when they sign up and so will automatically become part of any Merton cluster).
 

2. Centre Court
Management is looking at installing greener lighting, rain water harvesting and having bee-hives on the roof. The Wimbledon Bee-Keepers have been contacted for advice and it was suggested that their advice is followed on number of beehives, as there are other hives in the area and there needs to be sufficient flowering plants to support the number of bees. Once the hives are installed, there are plans to have tours for school children. Someone will be employed to look after the hives.

Most of the businesses in Centre Court are chains and are not part of Love Wimbledon. So they have their own solutions to recycling e.g. H & M had a scheme whereby people were given a £5 voucher for a bag of old clothes.
 
3. Be Neighbourly Survey
This seems to be a community building website. Alison received this survey and completed it. Here is the website - www.beneighbourly.com  Please get in touch if you know any more about this project.
 
4. Upcycling Wimbledon & Festival of Green Ideas
 
From 11am-2pm is UPCYCLING FAIR 

The following stalls are planned:
  • recipe ideas for using up food & free pancakes
  • advice on simple mending and sewing
  • tips for growing food for free
  • making cushions etc from unwanted clothes/fabrics
  • where to find free things  & pass on unwanted items
  • advice on PV panels
  • composting advice                  …..  and more
 

Also a special children’s workshop for making butterflies and moths from scraps of material. Seed planting and making attractive insect refuges. 

From 2pm – 3.30pm is the FESTIVAL OF GREEN IDEAS
This starts off with you being invited to tell everyone (in 2 mins max) what you are doing to make Wimbledon better and greener. Then join a workshop to look at topics like:
  • how to make Wimbledon look better
  • encouraging growing, making and selling food in Wimbledon
  • making Wimbledon better for walking and cycling  
                           ... and anything else people want to discuss

 
Everyone is welcome and entry is free. Download a poster HERE. 

If you would like to help at the event or just want to know more, please contact Juliet at julietboyd@doctors.org.uk  
 
5. Beetroot Books
Dan from Transition Town Wandsworth has set up an online facility for buying books. Books are hand picked and there is a particularly good selection of books on green issues and sustainable living. Also, there is a 10% discount for Project Dirt members. So if you want an alternative to Amazon and an interesting selection of reading, see HERE
 
6. Dig Merton
This is the council initiative to encourage people to grow things in green spaces around the streets and parks. It’s really important to have the right people involved in this and we should help them do this. Joanna suggested that Katherine Watkins, chair of the John Innes gardening group, might want to get involved. Helen will see if Katherine can be invited to the next meeting.
 
The maps below show where potential spaces are for growing things.

all parks + open spaces
all parks
highways
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  
 
 7. Chelsea Fringe
Curt will have a gardening/architectural project at Battersea Power Station, but is looking to bring it to Merton if he can find a suitable site. It needs to be fairly accessible for the general public. A site in Kingston Rd at the junction with Lower Downs Rd was suggested. The project will include plant swopping - but no gnomes!
 
8. Sustainable Architecture
Claudia is an architect, specializing in low energy housing. Having moved from Italy, she advises on private and public buildings. She was a senior lecturer and can advise on building your own solar panels.
 
9. Green Square
A new shop has opened in Kingston Rd, selling wood burning stoves, solar panels etc. They seem to give good advice and to get involved with the community. See http://greensquare.co.uk
 
10. Wool against Weapons
Joanna visited Aldermaston for the Easter demonstration against nuclear weapons. These have the potential to completely destroy the environment. She met someone from Stroud whose initiative is to get people together to knit a 7 mile long scarf to stretch between Aldermaston and Burghfield, where nuclear weapons are made. Joanna finds that knitting in a public place (like Green Coffee) attracts attention, providing an opportunity to discuss the issue. Find more information HERE. Afterwards the scarf will be cut up, made into blankets and sent to people in need.
 
11. Myrna Close & Computer Help
The strip of land near Myrna Close attracts a lot of rubbish and the pond has blue green algae. It was suggested that a “Friends of” group should be set up, as the problem is too big for one person to deal with. Project Dirt could put out a call to get local people involved, to provide volunteer groups to clean up the area and to get expert help on what to do in the long term. Meg will liaise with Mark at Project Dirt. Once the problems at this site are sorted out, Alison offered to advise on setting up a nature club there.

Meg was able to help Margaret with her new computer and printer and is happy to make use of her teaching experience to help others struggling with technology.
 
12. Tamworth Farm Allotments
This is a new allotment site, near Figges Marsh. The council has helped to clear the brambles. There has been one session to clear rubbish away and there will be another tomorrow (3rd April) and another on 14th April. Also, the Community Payback scheme will be helping out. Mark S said that Project Dirt could find more volunteers for future dates, if they could be given 1 or 2 weeks notice. Mark will get in touch with Steve Bettell, who is organising the site. Once all the rubbish is cleared, the area will be ploughed. Find more information HERE
 
13. Trees
People wanting to get involved in planting trees should contact Jane Plant of the Merton Tree Wardens at janeplant@pj464.co.uk
 
14. Friends of the Earth – Merton relaunch & Deen City Farm
There is a new Joint Co-ordinator of Merton Friends of the Earth called Ben Muton-Phillips. He and Auriel are planning a relaunch of Merton Friends of the Earth on Sunday 19th May at Deen City Farm. Ben is the Volunteer Co-ordinator at Deen City Farm and is setting up a website, Facebook and Twitter for Merton FoE. At the launch event, there will be face-painting and Alison will be giving bee talks. There will be postcards to sign in support of "The Bee Cause Day of Action", a National FoE Initiative to get better legislation to help bees. Find more information about 19th May under EVENTS below.

Ben is also looking for 10 - 20 volunteers to dig beds at the farm so that bee friendly plants can be planted.  Anyone interested should contact Ben on 020 8545 2171 or Email: BenMutonPhillips@deencityfarm.co.uk

15. Climate Change cut from The National Curriculum
Climate Change has been removed as a geography topic in the current draft of the National Curriculum for under 14 year olds. This means that two thirds of pupils will go through school without having to discuss the implications of climate change for our environment and for people. If you think this should be reversed, then sign the petition HERE.

 
What’s on

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 julietboyd@doctors.org.uk 

2 - 3.30pm      FESTIVAL OF (GREEN COFFEE) IDEAS
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 joycepountain@virginmedia.com

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 HERE.
 

Sat 4th May  10.30am - 3pm
Kitchen Gardening Workshop
Deen City Farm, 39 Windsor Ave, Merton Abbey

Come and join Alison for this workshop. Refreshments provided. £20 for visitors, £10 concessions, £5 volunteers. For further information, contact Alison at alipelikan@btinternet.com or tel. 8540 1971. To book a place, contact Louisa on louisa.loakes@deencityfarm.co.uk or tel. 8543 5300. 

Sat 11th May  10am – 4pm
Plant Sale & Spring Fair
Christ Church Hall, Copse Hill, West Wimbledon
Stalls selling plants, clothes, cakes, jam, leather goods, jewellery, silk flowers and more. In aid of Macmillan Cancer Support. Entry is £3. Find a poster HERE
 
14th May – 25th June
Economics Mythbusters Course
Online

Course run by the new economics foundation (nef) and Quaker Peace & Social Witness (QPSW) and featuring prominent journalists and economists. Become better equipped to understand and challenge a series of economic ‘myths’. There are fifty spaces available, on a 'first come, first served' basis - so get booking! See www.quaker.org.uk/mythbusters for further information. All are welcome.
 
Sat 18th May    11am - 2pm
Fete of the Earth - sale of plants & books
St Marks Church Hall (behind Wimbledon Library)
This is an annual event, where bric-a-brac, books and plants are sold to raise money for Wimbledon Disarmament Coalition/CND. If you have can donate any items, then please take them to 43 Wilton Grove – leave on the doorstep if there is no-one in. For further information, please contact info@wdc-cnd.org.uk

Sat 18th May   10.30am – 12.30pm
Plant Sale – John Innes
5a Sheridan Rd, Merton Park

Come along and buy plants, cakes, refreshments and meet your neighbours. Help is needed – so can you donate plants, help with setting up, selling and clearing up? Contact Ann Redfearn (ann@arke.me.uk or 020 8286 9983).

Sun 19th May  10.30 - 11.30am & 1-5pm
Merton Friends of the Earth - relaunch, stalls & bee event
Deen City Farm

10.30 - 11.30 am is the relaunch of Merton FoE and the AGM. 
1-5pm there will be stalls and activities including face-painting and talks about bees. 

Sat 1st June  10.30am - 3pm
Wildlife Gardening Workshop
Deen City Farm, 39 Windsor Ave, Merton Abbey

Come and join Alison for this workshop. Refreshments provided. £20 for visitors, £10 concessions, £5 volunteers. For further information, contact Alison at alipelikan@btinternet.com or tel. 8540 1971. To book a place, contact Louisa on louisa.loakes@deencityfarm.co.uk or tel. 8543 5300.

Sat 15th June   12 noon - 5pm
Mitcham Carnival
Three Kings Piece

The theme is Living Mitcham - so celebrate who you are and where you live. Stalls, stunt riders, entertainment, parade. Find more information about how to take part HERE 

Sat 6th July  10.30am - 3pm
All About Composting
Deen City Farm, 39 Windsor Ave, Merton Abbey

Come and join Alison for this workshop. Refreshments provided. £20 for visitors, £10 concessions, £5 volunteers. For further information, contact Alison at alipelikan@btinternet.com or tel. 8540 1971. To book a place, contact Louisa on louisa.loakes@deencityfarm.co.uk or tel. 8543 5300
 
 
Regulars
 
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 May 11th. If you would like to take a stall or want more information, please contact    victoria@mumsonthego.co.uk

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 17th April. To find out how to get to the Hand & Racquet, see here. Find the venue here.

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 gbfoodcycle@gmail.com   Download more information 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 joycepountain@virginmedia.com
 
Community Gardens - Christ Church & Fireplace
Would you like to run a community garden and help people to grow, make and sell food in Wimbledon? We are looking for a new Food Group leader, who wants to help transform Wimbledon into a local food hub. If you are interested, please get in touch with Joyce at wimbledonfoodgroup@gmail.com .

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 keithaspears@hotmail.com

Last Sundays   10.30am - 12.30pm
Free Bicycle Surgeries
Deen City Farm, 39 Windsor ave Merton Abbey   SW19 2RR

No need to book, just pop into the garden for a free checkup for your bike. For more information, contact Louisa on louisa.loakes@deencityfarm.co.uk or tel. 8543 5300.
 
 
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