Transition Kentish Town Newsletter
1. How can we as a community reconnect with nature and grow together?
Join us on three new adventures this month, and let’s get growing!
The first, (Covid permitting) is a physical adventure. Please join us on Saturday 24th October, 11am-3pm at our annual 'Trail of Well-Being’ event. During this day we will be socially distant, working together in groups of six, to plant pretty spring bulbs in our community gardens around KT. First up, 11am-12:30 meet at the Raglan Estate, Raglan Rd. We will then walk up Kentish Town High Street, popping bulbs into the planters, stopping for a cuppa along the way. We will arrive at Platform 1 Cottage Garden at KT Overground at 1:30pm. Come and join us at ’19' Highgate Rd at 2pm.
Finally meet at Leighton Road skip garden at 2:30pm.
Our compliments to the Greening Leighton team for this year’s most innovative ‘upcycled' spring bulb container planting. Bath time anyone? Feel free to join in at any point. Check @tkentishtown for updates.
Introducing our second adventure: 'Street Imaginings.’
Each month we will feature an inspiring intervention which helps us imagine a greener borough. We can also reconnect with nature through art.
This month we are focusing on the wonderful 'Bramshill Forest' street painting. The street painting began during lockdown. Many local residents were encouraged to paint pictures of animals and plants they hoped to find living in this imaginary urban woodland. You can see this beautiful community-created painting for yourself at the junction of Bramshill Gardens and Chester Road
What if you joined up with three neighbours in your street and started to imagine a local greener place? A tree pit, a traffic island, a ex-parking space turned into a parklet. A series of window boxes on a floor of your estate? Or more forest street art? Let’s re-imagine streets, and grow as a community together. Please share any 'street imaginings' pics with us!
For our third adventure, what if we all got grubby together?
Join our GRuBS group. Greening Urban Spaces provides us with a great way to respond to the Climate and Ecological emergency here in Camden and help reverse wildlife’s decline, allowing urban nature to regenerate and flourish. Together lets make a difference to urban wildlife.
If you have access to a window box, planter, flower bed, garden or any other green space then GRuBs has something to offer you. GRuBs offers:
- simple, basic information about how you can make a difference to urban nature on your own ‘patch’.
- signposting to relevant and informative resources and advice.
- individual coaching sessions to help get your project, however small or large, on (or into!) the ground.
- problem-solving sessions to help you sustain any urban greening project that’s running into difficulty.
There are lots of GrUbs living in and around Kentish Town and Camden. For more information contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.
2. What if the journeys we take not only reduce pollution, but are more active and fun?
The quiet roads of lockdown are now a very distant memory, and traffic is back at normal levels pretty much throughout the borough – even though most people are working from home, and many central London shops and businesses are closed. School run traffic is at particularly shocking levels, with many more people driving their children to school, and less car-sharing.
Camden has done good work in improving cycle lane provision, but progress on Healthy School Streets (timed road closures outside schools) and on the broader Low Traffic Neighbourhoods that would allow people to walk or cycle safely to schools and high streets has been lamentably slow.
It’s really important that we ask the Council to speed up the work that will make walking and cycling the most attractive option for more people’s journeys, more of the time. If you want to ask for a Healthy School Street at a local school please write to the council at: email@example.com. If you would like to ask for a Low Traffic Neighbourhood in your area, write directly to Adam Harrison, Cabinet Member for Environment and Transport: firstname.lastname@example.org.
This month we are joining Greenpeace Camden, to consider a green recovery with regards to the future of Transport in Camden. Join us on Wednesday 14th October at 7.30pm for a free online event. Booking via Eventbrite.
3. What if we could incorporate all areas of sustainability into a whole school eco-system, from increasing biodiversity and well being to tackling food waste and fast fashion?
School sustainability peer support group
Are you a teacher, staff member, or governor from a Camden school who is passionate about increasing sustainability in your school? If so, join us at our next sustainability peer support group session, in collaboration with Camden Council’s sustainability department. Thursday 14th October 4pm-5.15pm. To join the webinar contact: Carlos.Queremel@camden.gov.uk.
Come and hear about the proposal we have co-created with the Sustainers and Parliament Hill climate action group to 'Green Parli'. We are particularly excited about the idea to create a ‘Waste Zone’. This aims to incorporate all waste from food to fashion, in a series of ‘arty’ containers built as part of a student art/DT project.
Example of how the ‘Waste zone’ could look!
4. How can we help address fuel insecurity in Camden and save money by reducing our energy consumption at home?
Do you work, or are you a student in the area of energy, retrofitting, architecture, or the built environment? If so, we need you! Together with Power Up North London, Friends of the Earth Camden and Camden Council, we are planning a series of (initially) virtual monthly drop-in 'Energy and Retrofitting cafes'. At these cafes, residents will be encouraged to come along and get informal advice from a group of knowledgeable volunteers who are working in this area. First session planned for 10th November. 5:30pm-6:30pm. Please get in touch if you can help.
5. Whilst on the subject of consumption, what if we could not only learn to fix our electronic goods and stuff, but fix our relationship with electronics?
17th October is International Repair Day. Join us, and the fantastic Restart Project at a virtual repair cafe. The Restart Project, set up by a group of Camden residents, helps people learn how to repair broken electronics and rethink our consumption habits.
6. Think & Do
As part of the Think and Do family, we have been busy developing a series of virtual and physical pops ups.
Later this month do visit our poster campaign at Kentish Town library to discover what the ideas are, and how you can get involved. Do also look out for more clues dotted around KT. During half term week we are helping to deliver a Covid secure T&D week at Kentish Town City Farm. Kids will be inspired to take get involved in climate action: saying no to Fast Fashion, becoming energy and cycling savvy, learning about food and getting involved in a nature forage. Places are limited. For more details, see: ktcityfarm.org.uk.
From younger kids to older students, we are also particularly excited about the six month pop-up we are developing in collaboration with the sustainability department at UCL. This will kick off with an intriguing October webinar in which we will be unleashing the power of our imaginations: What if?
Over the next couple of months we hope (Covid allowing) to be able to have access to our new base at 19 Highgate Rd. Watch out for: Camden Forest tree giveaways, a seasonal clothes swop, an art exhibition, a Climate Justice Library and a Food Club.
7. What if we could grow our own Beer in Camden?
Camden MICRO brewery
Finally, moving onto a more thirst quenching subject! What if we could grow our own beer in Camden? It might have sounded like a silly question a few years ago, but later this week our very own real Camden brewery:
email@example.com, will be selling bottles of our special ‘Transition tipple’ beer brewed with hops grown from our Camden hop growers. St Mary’s is an amazing youth work charity. We urge you to support them. They have also recently started a beer-by-bike delivery service! If you are one of our hop growers, please go to St Mary’s on Saturday 10th October 10am-11am to pick up your free bottles, and if you got in touch last month about becoming one of our hop growers, we will be in touch with you soon!
Autumn is a season that teaches us change. The great letting go of leaves and strengthening of roots among the trees. Like trees, we are learning new ways to be rooted together. Even if we are stuck at home.
Here’s a pic of one of our hop growers, raising plants in a small window box at his home in NW5. Gnome sweet gnome!
See you next month.