Could We Have a Sustainability Education Centre for Herefordshire?

A green hub at the heart of Herefordshire?

At Queenswood Country Park the New Leaf Sustainable Development team (with help from partners Herefordshire Wildlife Trust) are busy imagining the possibility of a new Sustainability Education Centre for Herefordshire.

By making information about personal and community activity accessible to all, New Leaf’s plans would support the recent aspiration of Herefordshire Council to take Herefordshire’s carbon emissions to zero by 2030.

Plans include a variety of resources and approaches that would be accessible to a broad range of people. The centre itself would be complemented by on site examples of (eg.) energy generation and compost toilets. 

Please click on the link below for more information about New Leaf’s plans and to let them know what else you think should be made available at the Centre. 

The survey will take 5 minutes of your time and New Leaf will be eternally grateful. They would be even more grateful if you could forward the survey link on to your local group, family, friends, colleagues, neighbours, all and sundry…

Here is the link: 

Thank you!

Sustainability West Midlands is Looking for a Youth Action and our Young Director

Around the world climate change is becoming ever more the centre of discussion. We’re seeing the response of the younger generations, who are unsatisfied with the actions, or lack of, from current world leaders.

At SWM we believe it’s essential that young voices are heard. We reserve space on our board for a ‘Young Director’ and introduced this position three years ago. We have since worked with hugely successful and dedicated individuals such as Ruth Corral and Matt Beveridge, who has just finished his time as our second Young Director. We are very pleased to announce that we have this week recruited our third Young Director, Christopher Brown. Christopher is Energy and Active Travel Officer at Herefordshire Council and will a fresh perspective on governance at SWM.

We also provide opportunities for to students to work alongside us, developing their skills and understanding as well as their passion for sustainability. This is a route I chose, starting with volunteering and subsequently securing my full-time position of Sustainability Adviser. I am now helping to develop our visions and goals by updating our Roadmap and spreading our message and reach as far as possible.

Read our full comment and learn about other opportunities for young people in the West Midlands as well as some of the inspiring individuals and campaigns that have driven action.

Tom Hendy, Sustainability Adviser, on behalf of the SWM Team

From ‘The Enkindled Spring’ by D.H Lawrence

I am amazed at this spring, this conflagration 
Of green fires lit on the soil of the earth, this blaze 
Of growing, and sparks that puff in wild gyration, 
Faces of people streaming across my gaze. 

And I, what fountain of fire am I among 
This leaping combustion of spring? My spirit is tossed 
About like a shadow buffeted in the throng 
Of flames, a shadow that’s gone astray, and is lost.

‘April Rain Song’ by Langston Hughes

Let the rain kiss you.
Let the rain beat upon your head with silver liquid drops.
Let the rain sing you a lullaby.

The rain makes still pools on the sidewalk.
The rain makes running pools in the gutter.
The rain plays a little sleep-song on our roof at night—

And I love the rain.

‘Dandelion’ by Robert MacFarlane

“Dazzle me, little sun-of-the-grass!

And spin me, tiny time-machine!

(Tick-tock, sun clock, thistle & dock)

Now no longer known as Dent-de-Lion, Lion’s Tooth, Windblow,

(Tick-tock, sun clock, nettle & dock)

Evening Glow, Milkwitch or Parachute, so

Let new names take and root, thrive and grow

(Tick-tock, sun clock, rattle & dock)”


This event has been organised by the Hereford Civic Society. It would be great to have people present asking questions on sustainability and pushing for the changes that need to be made in light of the Climate Emergency declaration made last month. Below are the details!

Candidates’ visions for Hereford in 15 years time
Chaired by John Bothamley, CBE
Taking place at Herefordshire & Ludlow College,
Hereford campus, Folly Lane, Hereford
on Thursday 11 April 2019
Arrivals from 6.45pm, for a 7pm start, and a 8.30pm close
What plans do our political candidates have for Hereford’s built environment
if they are elected in May 2019?
The Hereford University Centre and the Hereford Civic Society will bring a
lively structured Pecha Kucha meeting with all parties invited. Each candidate
will be able to show five slides in a five-minute presentation. It will be a
unique opportunity seeing politicians held to time, respectfully questioned
and, hopefully, showing off some deliverable visions for Hereford.
During this year, Place magazine has been highlighting concerns the Hereford
Civic Society has about piecemeal development, and the apparent omission
of an overall master plan. The Society’s aims include promoting high
standards of design as well as preserving the best of our historic buildings. The
candidates will be explaining their approach to highway design, their vision for
the City and just where they would like to see new developments.
At the evening’s lecture there will be the Conservative, Green, It’s our County,
Labour, and Liberal Democrat parties.
This lecture is free of charge and open to the public.
Please RSVP by Thursday 4 April to
t. 0800 032 1986

CTRLshift; An Emergency Summit for Change!

An invite from Transition Network:

We at Transition Network are proud to be involved in CTRLshift, we believe that Transition is a key part of the jigsaw to creating a new and better UK, be great to see you there. 

CTRLshift seeks to catalyse a network of change-making organisations, networks, and independent practitioners, creating a movement for positive social, economic and environmental change. We are developing a shared agenda to shift power over our democracy, economy and environment to people and communities across Britain.

CTRLshift: An Emergency Summit for Change 2 will take place this year in Stoke on Trent over 8-10 May 2019.

We are developing a shared agenda to shift power over our democracy, economy and environment to people and communities across Britain.

Join change makers from across economy, land, social justice and environmental sectors for the second annual summit.

CTRLshift collaborators include Permaculture Association, Shared Assets, Transition Network, Happy Museums, Totnes Reconomy Project, The Alternative UK, Democracy Collaborative, Co-operatives UK, Shared Futures CIC, Preston Cooperative Development Network, Schumacher Institute, Ethical Consumer, Middleport Environment Charity, Losing Control, United Diversity, Stir to Action, CLES and Counter Coin.

Over the two days of the event, the programme will include:

1.  Solutions Sessions – workshops sharing latest work and practice across sectors from our partners and other collaborators in the event.

2. Thematic Sessions –  exploring key themes within groups (Economy, Environment, Democracy) leading to facilitated sessions that explore deeper collaboration – using Stoke as a context and example to test our ideas and ground them in the reality of a real place. What would it look like if we put it all together in Stoke? With groups from Stoke.

3. Networking & Co-Working Sessions – time to foster new connections and cross sector collaboration – day 1 more organised; day 2, self-organised

4. Strategy Sessions – Where next for CTRLshift – invitation to get involved, funding, plans for events, working groups, how to get involved as partner, linking to parallel initiatives.

Lets get the whole system in the room.

  • National Organisations £125 + booking fee
  • Regional & Grassroots Organisations £100 + booking fee
  • Subsidised Local Community Enterprises £80 + booking fee
  • Limited Bursary Places available

8-10 May 2019
Stoke on Trent, Staffordshire

Find out more and how to book here:

From ‘In the Fields’ by Charlotte Mary Mew

Can I believe there is a heavenlier world than this?
And if there is
Will the heart of any everlasting thing
Bring me these dreams that take my breath away?
They come at evening with the home-flying rooks and the scent
of hay,
Over the fields. They come in spring. 

Invite from the Green Hedgehog Festival

Ross-on-Wye is situated on the beautiful River Wye, surrounded by verdant green spaces and is the only market town in the Wye Valley Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.  We want to keep it that way and help others to do the same.  So we’re inviting stallholders whose core business and values focus on one or more of the following: ·      

Nurture Nature: provide education, activities and/or information to children and adults to create or enhance sustainable natural habitats using Nature’s patterns and designs in Ross-on-Wye and the HR9 area ·       

 Inspire: deliver activities, talks or publish media that inspire children and adults to make a heartfelt connection to wildlife, the outdoors and/or live a greener lifestyle ·        

Climate Change: deliver education or information to children and adults that have a positive impact on reducing our carbon footprint and create cleaner, greener environments.  

Refuse, eg. single use plastic



Repurpose, eg. bicycles

Reduce fossil fuel use

Reduce car use

Reduce meat intake

Don’t buy food that comes from intensive agriculture or farming practices

Use renewables

Plant trees and grow your own fruit & vegetables

Walk or cycle

Pick up litter.

Ethical: sell hand-made items that are sourced or made from natural and/or recycled materials

When:   Sunday 22nd September 2019

Where:  Next to the River Wye

Want a stall? If you or your organisation want to have a stall at this year’s Festival, please send an e-mail to with details of your (or your organisation’s) values, or post your interest on the HedgehogFestival Facebook page @festivalhog or on theGreenRoss Network Facebook page @GreenRossNetwork There is no charge for a pitch but we do ask that you donate a ‘gift’ to be included in a tombola.  Detailed Stall holder Instructions are sent to you only when it is confirmed you have a 3m x 3m pitch at the Festival.

Over the past five years, the Hedgehog Festival in Ross-on-Wye has been successfully delivering art- and nature based education to primary schools as well as organising a well attended annual celebration each September. Building on that good practice and keeping in line with current global developments, the Hedgehog Festival has joined forces with the GreenRoss Network and agreed to deliver a joint ‘Green Hedgehog Festival’. This is an exciting development and we want you to be part of it.  If you want more information on GreenRoss, there is an active GreenRoss Network, website ( and a facebook page (@Greenross).  We look forward to hearing from you.

Germany’s Renewables Share Jumps to Almost 75%

Germany, already more ambitious than other countries in its goal to have 65% of its electricity come from renewable sources, is already surpassing that aim by almost 10% . As it stands, the percentage is 72.4% and will only go up! Read more about this here!

Inspiring stuff!

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