Transition Kentish Town Newsletter November 2019
From What is…to What if?
Not only is this the name of the book recently published by Rob Hopkins, who launched the Transition Town Network, but it is the theme of our newsletter this month.
EXCITING NEWS EVERYONE:
Think&Do…coming to our high street NEXT WEEK!
Following one of the recommendations from Camden Council’s recently convened Citizens Assembly: “to mobilise community”, we are thrilled to have been asked by Camden Council to co-design a pop up community space which is opening next week in Kentish Town. Yes, you read it right - next week!
Based in the old Flapjacks cafe, Think&Do will be a community space for Climate and Eco Action. Open for 6 weeks every Thursday-Saturday, midday to 8pm, Think&Do will be a bustling hub of Imagination workshops, energy forums, ideas for greening up, share and repair, transport and pollution campaigning, fashion up-cycling, film-screening, a school wall, mapping workshops, and Saturday surplus suppers cooked with Vegbox: a space for us, the community, to come together to co-create ideas to address the Climate and Ecological Emergency in Camden. There will even be an energy bike to power a string of solar lights! Come and burn up some calories.
If you have an idea for a workshop, talk, or any skills share to offer, please do get in touch with Sue Sheeham, the council officer we are co-desiging the space with: Sue.Sheehan@camden.gov.uk
Anyway, please do just pop into the shop whenever you can. There will always be a free cup of tea/coffee with your name on it! And goodies to eat.
Whilst we are still curating the list of events for the next six weeks, here are some early highlights. There will also be a noticeboard on the shop window with daily updates on what’s on!
- Friday 1/11 6pm - Unleashing the power of the imagination with Farhana Yamin, acclaimed international environmental lawyer and climate change and development policy expert. (Also of Extinction Rebellion renown!)
- Saturday 9/11 - Nothing New November. A fab fashion swop with Friends of the Earth Camden. RSVP via Eventbrite:
- Saturday 9/11 - Vegbox surplus food meal with Rewilding Camden.
Rob Hopkins will even be giving a talk on 29th November, so watch this space.
We will be sending out weekly bulletins over the next month to tempt you into the shop. We have been led to believe that this will be the first of many such shops around the borough - providing we as a community make it a success.
How can you help?
Whilst on the subject of Camden Council and their formal declaration of a Climate and Ecological Emergency, we are delighted to report that not only were Climate Emergency Camden invited to present to full council, but a group of students from our Sustainers project received a rapturous round of applause from the council chambers when they delivered to Camden Council their four demands:
- Single use plastic to be banned in all LB Camden schools by Spring 2020.
- Introduction of two meat free lunches a week in all schools.
- Introduction of Teacher Learning Responsibility TLR payments. A dedicated teacher in each school to embed sustainability into the curriculum. The Climate and Ecological Emergency should not just be a topic debated at a lunchtime club. The Sustainers demand on behalf of all students, to be taught: Think Global: Act Local.
- Solar. All schools to have solar panels within 2 years.
Our Sustainers even made the front pages of the CNJ. It was humbling to hear them speak on behalf of all of us. The full article is available on the CNJ website. Here is the photo of Hareta Tesfay and Gabrielle Kennedy in the Town Hall chamber, from the CNJ article:
On behalf of the Sustainers we will be chasing up action on their demands and to that end, we met with Cabinet Member for a Best Start in Life, Cllr Mason, this week.
In the Think&Do shop there will be several highly-charged debates attended by students from our Camden schools! So expect more student led action and demands soon!
Global Justice Now
When: Monday 28th October, 7 - 9 pm.
Where: Salvation Army, 10 - 16 Haverstock Hill, Chalk Farm, NW3 2BL.
Cost: free, but please register via Eventbrite.
Come and join our evening workshop with break-out discussions to learn
more about CLIMATE JUSTICE and what we can do together.
Led by Rebecca Saville from Global Justice Now.
Salvation Army - Web of Wellbeing
Saturday 2nd November 10:30 - 4:30pm: build wooden raised beds.
Sunday 3rd November 11 - 2pm: plant beds and enjoy community lunch.
Where: Salvation Army, Chalk Farm Corps, 10-16 Haverstock Hill, NW3 2BL.
The next development in the creation of our Web of Wellbeing around LB Camden, which aims to link community gardens, will be the building of a community garden on Saturday 2/11 and Sunday 3/11 at the Salvation Army in Chalk Farm. Do come and join us to build wooden beds and plant up.
Thursday 31st October to help lay the wildflower turf.
Thursday 14th November, 10:30 - 2pm, to help build a coppice wooden fence.
Where: the Raglan Estate.
We would like to say a huge thank you, to you, our wonderful community for helping us raise the funds to deliver our first Rewilding Camden project. Our Growing Raglan project has been fully funded thanks to you! We strongly believe that this project is as much about growing community, as it rewilding - hence the name Growing Raglan: Growing community.
It was so inspiring at our first Growing Raglan event to see teenagers chopping apples with knives and using the apple press to make juice, and residents all coming together to discuss fruit trees. There was a lovely moment when a resident told us that although she and her family did not have much money, they had clubbed together to give us some money to buy a plum tree. We are going to plant a plum and pear tree outside her window. People who have lived next to each other for many years were given the opportunity to meet and talk to each other for the very first time.
The residents on the estate have already asked for a further area of the grounds to adopt a ‘relaxed mowing’ regime. This means, no regular mowing and cutting the grass only three times a year. By reducing regular mowing, wildflowers will grow within a few weeks. We would like as many public spaces as possible in Camden to adopt a relaxed mowing regime. With 97% of UK wildflower gone, it's so important that we encourage wildflowers and therefore insect populations wherever possible.
Rewilding Camden is a community-led rewilding project supporting the transformation of unused patches of ground across Camden into thriving green, socially inclusive spaces. We plan over the next five years to undertake similar rewilding activities across Camden Council’s housing estates and to share our collective experiences with communities more broadly. For more information on Rewilding Camden contact: email@example.com.
Growing Raglan: Growing Community raised just under £3k in two weeks! We are now embarking upon the delivery of the project. Beds for wildflower turf have been cleared. Please join us on 31/10 to help lay the wildflower turf. This event will take place in collaboration with TCV/Green Gym.
On 14/11, join us at the Raglan Estate to create a wooden hurdle made from coppiced hazel and willow. 10:30-2pm.
To celebrate the completion of the first part of the project please join us at Think&Do November 9th, 6 - 8 pm for the LAUNCH PARTY. Raise a glass to toast our project and join us for a communal veggie meal which we will be preparing alongside Kentish Town’s Vegbox. This free of charge event will take place at our very own pop up shop in the heart of Kentish Town. Please register via Eventbrite:
Kentish Town Bike Workshop
When: Monday 4th November 6:30pm - 8:30pm.
Where: Kentish Town Health Centre.
A free monthly drop-in bike maintenance workshop run in collaboration between Camden Cyclists and Transition Kentish Town. Our mechanics will support you to fix your bike. Tea and cake while you wait! It's always the first Monday of the month, except when there's a bank holiday, when it's the second Monday instead.
Climate Justice and Food Sovereignty
When: Tuesday 19th November, 7pm.
Where: Highgate Library Civic and Cultural Centre, Chester Rd, Highgate, London N19 5DH.
You are invited to an evening on Climate Justice and Food Sovereignty from the Nicaraguan perspective. Helen Yuill and Brittany Oakes will report from their work with the Latin America Agroecology Institute (IALA).
There will be rum punch and non-alcoholic drinks (Pinolillo, Atol), vegan twists on the Latin food classics like Tamales and Empanadas, plastic-free and including ingredients grown on London allotments (not the rum and plantains...) for sale.
Free seeds will be available for Nicaraguan favourites like the green husk tomato (tomatillo), black turtle beans (frijol), and multicoloured corn, suitable for London growing conditions.
Global Justice Now will have info on agroecology projects outside of Latin America, and there will be a stall for Fairtrade/Traidcraft produce.
Organised by Nicaragua Solidarity Campaign.
Power Up North London
Do watch this space…Power Up North London should be launching two major new share offers soon and will need your help. We can’t share too much quite yet, but fingers crossed they should be big and beautiful! If you would like to be kept informed about the share offer please email:
firstname.lastname@example.org and we will let you know when we have more news.
Meantime, we are steaming ahead with a bunch of new projects in Islington, which include new solar installations and seeing if we can help tenants in a block of flats reduce their bills by shifting to a private wire arrangement. In brief, rather than everyone having to pay a standing order individually, the building would go onto a single source, saving residents hundreds of pounds very quickly.
The declaration of a climate emergency means that our work is gaining growing attention and support which is great, but we are looking for more volunteers to help us. We are particularly keen to hear from engineers with experience of project management - particularly the renewables sector. Also, anyone with media and communications experience would be warmly welcome to the fold.
When LB Camden recently formally declared a Climate and Ecological emergency, many of the points raised were taken from the Climate Emergency Camden, CEC, action plan. CEC is now mobilising to hold the Council to its promises, including the commitment to DIVEST its pension funds from fossil fuels. CEC is actively working with Extinction Rebellion, Unison, Camden Fairtrade, and other local pressure groups, to hold the council to account.
For more info, or to join CEC: email@example.com.
To have your say on on banning fossil fuels in Camden:
We will be back in touch with another email update next week. Until then, see you at Think&Do.
Do go and buy this book, released last week, which the Guardian describes as being full of: “Big ideas that just might save the world”—The Guardian.