Transition Stroud

This is a shared history blog. Together we can write the history of our process of transition as it happens.

Monday, 27 July 2009

Eco-Renovation Open Homes returns in September

These last months we have been putting together the next Open Homes weekend - loads of work ...anyhow today we had a press photo shoot and meeting as the leaflet is due to be launched this weekend...below is the press release we put together and some pics from this morning....

Photo: Chris from Ecotricity, Debbie from Stroud District Council, Nick, the homeowner showing us his solar stuff, Helen the Coordinator this year, me, Emma from Ecotricty's Affinity scheme and Clare from Stroud Valley's Project. Below other pics from the morning.

Launch of new leaflet and affinity Scheme with Ecotricity - Energy Monitors coming to libraries

The Stroud Eco Renovation Open Homes weekend is set to return on September 12th and 13th 2009 after last year's huge success that saw over 1,100 visits to homes and the exhibition. Transition Stroud will be launching their new leaflet next week which has details of the amazing 22 homes that will be opening their homes to share their eco-renovations.

This year Transition Stroud have negotiated a deal with local green energy company Ecotricity so that anyone switching to Ecotricity's green tariff will lead to a donation to Transition Stroud getting £25 to help fund other low carbon projects like Open Homes (i). Transition Stroud are also setting up a project with the libraries service so that from September Energy Monitors will be available to borrow like books.

Helen Royall, Coordinator of this years Open Homes said: "We have a whole range of homes on show this year from new build to listed including internal and external insulation, wood pellet boilers, air source heat pumps, gas condensing boilers, PV, rainwater harvesting and more. We have Pizzas and cream teas plus Nightingale's Cafe at the eco-installers fair at The Exchange which has just had a major eco-renovation - plus we have a walk around some of the homes and a mini bus safari to get you to a selection of the homes on both Saturday and Sunday. Details of booking the walk and safaris are in our leaflet which will be out in cafes, libraries, Tourist Information and more. We also have our website: www.stroudopenhomes.org.uk "

Philip Booth, who is helping this years event said: "We are delighted to have the support of many people and groups including wonderful support from Stroud District Council, the Town Council, Heritage Open Days and Ecotricity who have sponsored this year's leaflet. Of course special thanks must go to all the homeowners who are so very kindly opening their homes to the public. Plus we are delighted to be launching the Energy Monitors project which will allow people to borrow them from several District libraries in the same way that people borrow books and DVDs."

Affinity scheme launched

Philip Booth, who has just swapped to Ecotricity, said: "We are delighted to announce that Ecotricity are supporting Transition Stroud - every customer who swaps to them means £25 for Transition Stroud to develop more projects to cut the carbon locally. All you need is to phone them and quote ‘Transition Stroud’. Ecotricity are the only company to spend 100% on building new sources of green energy - literally turning our electricity bills into windmills. I have been on a green tariff with a big company and have meant to change to a proper green tariff like Ecotricity for a long time - this affinity offer we've set up is the final push I needed to make the change! I am hoping this affinity scheme will also lead to others swapping to green energy."

For more information on Open Homes call Helen Royall on 01453 755509 or email admin@transitionstroud.org

See more about the project at:
http://www.stroudopenhomes.org.uk/
And more about Transition Stroud:
http://www.transitionstroud.org/

Notes

(i) Ecotricity is an electricity company with a difference. As green energy pioneers, Ecotricity is dedicated to building new wind turbines to fight climate change. Switching is easy and it's the biggest single step you can take to reduce your emissions and protect the environment. Act now and sign up to Ecotricity at www.ecotricity.co.uk/transtroud or by ringing free on 08000 302302 and quote ‘Transition Stroud’. Transition Stroud receives a kind donation from Ecotricity every time someone makes the switch.

Sunday, 26 July 2009

Partying our Way to a Happier Future


Yesterday Lower Street, my street, had its first street party in a very long time. Lily has been living here for 52 years and it was the first street party she had ever been too - in fact the first street party any of our residents had ever been to.

Why does a street party matter? We thought it would help us come to know our neighbours and begin to build that conviviality that we talk so much about as the up side of the transition.

Each street party represents its particular street. Ours was considerably less raucous than Middle Street's which involves alcohol and where there are lots of children. Our party had a more sedate tone, with an elegant spread of food, folk music from Rob and Jehanne and a few well chosen words from our ex-Mayor and most famous resident. We know he lives in Castle Street but we let him in!

The most enjoyable part of the day was having the power to reclaim our street from the ubiquitous car. Our makeshift road block filled us with delight, as did the view of the street with no moving vehicles. And seeing Ann play football with one of our younger residents. Two cars were left - one from some people who were obviously on holiday and another from a resident who was using it to keep non-residents out and then forgot to drive away at the last minute!

If you don't have a street party in your part of town I recommend it for next year. If you create the space people come and fill it with music and food and bonhomie. Aside from the street closure (which involves one A4 form and totally unnecessary £40 charge from Stroud District Council) there is very little planning. A hotline to God about the weather clearly helps and we have obviously identified which type of prayer is most effective. They don't call this Quaker Row for nothing.

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