Notes from Open Meeting 28th June 2012

Apologies from Philip Leicester

Financial Report

We’ve currently got just over £550 in the account.  The £200 University grant paid for the four banners which cost £150.  We’ll be using the £50 as a contribution towards leaflet costs.  The general leaflet will cost £100, as has the Green Grub one.  Steve said that we should get £750 for the reskilling project, which can be used for equipment, etc.  It was pointed out we should have an asset inventory.  Caroline said that we might be able to get some storage space in the church building that her church group are restoring at the moment.

Hearts and Minds

Picnic in the Park was the big event recently – Sue suggested that we should have a debriefing meeting so that we can plan for a potential attendance at next year’s PitP.  The Environment Action Team at Charnwood Borough Council has been trundling forward slowly due to complicated organisational issues (resulting in the most recent meeting being cancelled at short notice).  Cobden school had a very keen teaching assistant who had helped produce the display at PitP and would like to do more with TL.  Steve and Paul had helped the local mosque group dig over their garden space which has now been planted up.  Steve and Yvette are going to the Haddon Way event 2pm-4pm on Sunday 1st July near Woodbrook Vale School.  It was mentioned that we should try to take part in more events being run by similar community groups as part of our outreach.  Paul suggested having a TL Christmas tree at the All Saints church event this year – Ruth came up with an idea for decorating it to demonstrate what TL sub groups are working on.

Energy

Philip is working on a Loughborough Retrofit project to help encourage  townsfolk to improve their energy efficiency of their homes.  This will be partly done using examplar houses and the project can be set up ready for any future potential funding rounds.  Caroline suggested Energy Efficiency Champion training, which might get part funding from the county council’s Shires grants.  She also has a press release about the Loughborough Solar PV Scheme nearly ready to go out – just waiting for some updated figures from New World Solar – and has some photos of people who have had installations made already.

Joe described the Green Fox community energy scheme that aims to put microgeneration plants (solar initially) on community buildings such as schools and hospitals.  It was suggested that the Energy group gather suitable Loughborough buildings to submit to Green Fox.

Food & Gardens

At the recent sub-group meeting it was discussed what TL could do to provide more outlets for local food and encourage growing.  Steve suggested a “Green Army” of volunteers willing to help groups/individuals bring land back into cultivation.  Also discussed cooperative food buying scheme, with Paul Barker describing the group he already has running.  There’s a half day baking course on 15th September at Manor Farm – the course fee is £10 (payable to Paul Goodman) and there’s currently two places left.

Apple pressing sessions start on 22nd September at the Green Place in Sileby.  Apples and pears can be pressed.  The next Food & Gardens subgroup meeting is on 25th July at 7pm at Manor Farm and there’s a visiting to Wymeswold Community Orchard on 12th July.  Gorse Covert community orchard scheme is supported by CBC but they want to see more involvement from the local community – several TL folk who live in the area will be contacting the local community groups to push this.  Landscaping and Gardening Society have had a visit to their garden from both Jonathon Porritt and an ex-councillor.  Students being encouraged to learn more about the plants growing and biodiversity as part of Loughborough in Bloom.

Reskilling

Steve went to a food conference in Leeds recently – he has some information available if people want to see it.  He had a long talk with Ian from the Peterborough reskilling project we’ve joined who will help produce cards/leaflets with out logo on them to promote the scheme. There will be a meeting with the Peterborough folk at some point during July to find out how to use the website, and then another during August with the other four Transition Town groups involved (dates to be arranged – Steve will let us know when they are arranged and will try to get either evening or weekend ones if possible so others can join in).  Steve has contacted some venues for skillshare sessions, but most venues are going to charge.  Steve is keen on Skill Share Fares at community centres.

Transport

We ran a bike maintenance workshop at the LGS shed earlier this month that was quite successful and Mark, the cycle expert, is happy to run others on campus.  It was suggested getting other workshops elsewhere if we can find suitable venues.  Ruth suggested that we put together a leaflet for people who buy bikes for Christmas presents explaining correct setup and simple maintenance.

Reflections on the Last Year

Paul briefly reflected on some of the things TL has done over the last twelve months.  We need to keep track of this to demonstrate what we’ve done to potential future funders.  Sue suggested that we have a longer reflection session as part of the PitP review meeting that she volunteered to organise.

Location/Time of Open Meetings

Jon described how he had a met someone at the recent PitP event who said that he would like to get involved with Transition but couldn’t find out when/where meetings were being held.  He had suggested that we should consider holding open meetings in a set, easily accessible venue on a set day each month, and said that our existing communication of meeting locations (via the website, Google Group, twitter, on posters, notes in the Echo and via word of mouth) didn’t reach out to him.  We had a brief discussion about the pros and cons of this idea but ran out of time as we needed to be out of the building at 9pm sharp.  It was suggested that Jon raise the issue on the Google Group for further discussion.

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