Admin Group Meeting 14th July 2011

Present: Kathryn, Sue, Jimll, Steve, Harris, Paul

This meeting was mostly concerned with looking at how we thought the open public meeting had gone, planning for the followup meeting next week, working out how we might structure the group and dealing with various odds and ends.

There might be a chance to link to the Transition Loughborough web site from the Elf Foods website.  Steve had been to the recent Transition Towns Conference for a day, which had proved interesting.  Sue said that she had met the Transition Network’s diversity officer who was keen on our inclusion of many different community groups.  The Transition Network may also want us to film some of our meetings/events/actions so that they can collect videos of how different Transition Town groups are working.

ACTION: Jim’ll can do digital video so will try to capture some footage.

Harris, who is the new Loughborough Students Union (LSU) People, Places and Amnesty Internation society chair, said that he do all he could to get PP&AI student members on board with Transition next year. Kathryn also reported that Philip was happy to carry on managing the Google Group mailing list but would also be happy to work with Jimll on the other online services.

We need to build on the positive energy of last week’s public meeting. Currently most of the energy in that group seemed to be focused towards food and growing. Kathryn posed the question: were we strategic enough in advertising the meeting? We can’t rely on online messages alone – we need to reach out to people with posters, word of mouth etc. Jimll said that flyers might be viewed by some as junk mail and it might be an idea to get articles into existing community publications (eg parish magazines around Loughborough). There was a call for an email list of other groups that we might want to contact en masse in the future.  Steve and Jimll volunteered to team up to share the advertising/promotion duties.  Harris said the LSU PP&AI can also help out with publicity.

ACTION: Kathryn gave Jimll a copy of the paper Green Directory so that he can extract useful addresses and produce a suitable system.

Sue provided some numbers for what people at last week’s meeting said they were interested in (some people are interested in more than one thing):

  • Gardening – 6
  • Food – 9
  • Energy – 4
  • Transport -3
  • Training/education – 2
  • Community cohesion – 1
  • Diversity – 1
  • Wildlife – 1
  • Campaigning – 2
  • Planning – 2
We discussed various plans for how next week’s meeting might run.  We eventually settled on suggesting:
  • 7.30 – 7.45 Welcome, overview, etc
  • 7.45 – 8.15 Group discussions split into Food/growing, Energy, Transport, Community Outreach.  Planning and Campaigning are likely to be split across all the topics and wildlife might form part of growing. People are free to move between groups as they feel fit – the groups will note down people’s ideas, desires, etc.
  • 8.15 – 8.30 Feedback from the groups to tease out viable actions to take forward.
  • 8.30 – 8.45 Show of hands for which people want to be actively involved in which actions arising from the groups.  People free to join more than one group.
  • 8.45-9.00 Wrap up and disperse
It would be good to have a poster advertising the website, Google Group, Twitter and date of the next meeting (September 7th at 7.15pm in the Shree Ram Krishna Centre in Loughborough).  It was also suggested with could hand out small cards with similar details on to remind people or let them pass them on to friends.  Sue unfortunately is away next week so can’t reprise her excellent facilitation from the last meeting.  Instead Kathryn will give the initial welcome/overview and then Paul will ensure that the meeting is kept to time by moving things on at the times above.
ACTIONS: Paul/Kathryn to run the meeting, Steve/Jimll to produce a poster and/or cards.
There was then some discussion about how Transition Loughborough should be governed.  Do we have a formal chair/treasurer/secretary/etc forming a core steering group?  Alternative proposed was an “administrative group” that dealt with things like PR, booking meeting rooms, etc but that reporting from subgroups and steering of projects should come at regular (monthly initially) open public meetings so that everyone gets a say in how Transition Loughborough is running.   The administrative group should be seen as enabling, rather than controlling, and membership would be expected to change over time.
We considered where and when we could hold public meetings.  John Storer House is central but costs £35 per session.  Shree Ram Krishna Centre is likely to be cheaper and we’re having the 7th September meeting there, but there was support for “rotating” the meetings around different venues, possibly on different days of the week, to give the maximum chance for members of different communities to engage with Transition.  It has been suggested that a “Green Drinks” evening could be held as part of a future public meeting to improve our social side.
Steve was keen on setting up “give and take stalls” at future community meetings/events.  The idea being that people bring things to donate (clothes, etc) and then people buy things they want – this could be used to provide initial funding for Transition groups running community based projects and/or cover meeting costs.
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