Our HGN Gathering on Wednesday 20th September is going to take us on a journey through our community transport needs.
Alongside other bus specialists and enthusiasts we will be joined by Anna Heywood of the Hay Ho Community Bus. Find out how have some communities have managed to save their local bus service or put together a viable community-run bus.
Together we’ll map out some of the triumphs, challenges, opportunities and pitfalls of our county’s rural transport services…
Caring for God’s Acre is the national charity for the conservation of burial grounds.
They are currently developing a project which encourages and supports people to survey the nature in, and the local history of, burial grounds. This is in partnership with many organisations using existing systems such as the Historic Environment Records, Church Heritage Record and Church Heritage Cymru.
Burial grounds come in all shapes and sizes including church or chapel yards, cemeteries, green burial sites, and include all faiths and none. And there are some beautiful examples in rural Herefordshire, including the lovely Humber Woodland of Remembrance.
Malvern’s new hands-on alfresco science event features our own Gordon Coppock with his Watts Up With Your Energy bikes. Join him and others for a fun and exciting day exploring the wonders of science and technology from 10:30am to 4:30pm.
The event is free to attend, and picnickers are welcome.
Saturday 1st July, Priory Park, Great Malvern
More information here.
Business facilities that can have a large proportion of their energy supplied directly by locally generated energy are very rare in this region, plus the locally community owned CoOperative directly supports the local businesses by guaranteeing to provide electricity at a rate per unit that is lower than the available retail rate for the next 20 years.
They are in a wonderful rural location that is well placed on the Hereford -Ledbury main ‘A’ road.
For more details about the units please follow these links:
Or if you are interested to hear more about the solar electricity generation at Glebe Farm and how that works please contact Pomona Solar.
This open source project visualises the emissions of electricity generation across Europe along with the potential for renewable energy.
By playing around with the tool available on the website you can discover how wind and solar power have already become a significant part of the energy mix in most European countries.
More details here.
This is showing the great improvements being acheived in the carbon footprint of the electricity we use. Just a few years ago in the UK the average was over 500gCO2eq/kWh.
Note that the values used to reflect the carbon footprint of electricity generated by Nuclear power are still not agreed worldwide, and the figures used on this of only 12g may be too low.
For those of you who haven’t yet looked in on Richard’s blogs they seek to show how humanity could have a radically better future based on the twin principles of ecological sustainability and social justice: www.richardpriestley.co.uk
On his website there is a MailChimp sign-up form. If you sign-up and you’ll get each new blog direct to your in-box.
For those of you on Twitter, Richard would love a few more followers, @richard_global_
And while you are there on Twitter you might like to follow the Herefordshire Green Network too: @HfdsGN
Herefordshire currently has a great opportunity to access European funding for cultural and heritage capital projects: Whilst stocks last!
Applications for LEADER funding can be made by private businesses or community groups based in Herefordshire but excluding those in Hereford City. Funding of up to £35,000 is available to landowners and community groups for building projects, for the restoration of heritage and natural sites, and for capital investments that support cultural and community activities. Marketing that promotes rural tourism might also be funded.
Generally, an element of match funding from elsewhere would be expected.
The investment would need to demonstrate that it benefits the local economy (ideally with jobs created), promotes tourism and can demonstrate that it either creates a sense of place or helps to protect a cultural asset.
One cultural site has so far successfully applied for funding: Ledbury Market Theatre is making capital improvements to its theatre space with help from LEADER.
Are you interested in developing projects to benefit your community?
CSE are looking to establish interest for a new Ofgem-funded project, hosted by Western Power Distribution, using data from your local substation. The OpenLV project is making electricity network data ‘open access’ for the first time ever. This presents a great opportunity for smart thinking and innovation. We are inviting people to come up with novel ideas for Apps that can make use of this data, or indeed thinking of new ‘offline’ uses for this type of data.
There are around a million electricity substations in the UK. Almost all of them are currently ‘silent’; local people have no way of knowing what is happening at the substation. But substation low voltage (LV) data could be used by communities in all sorts of ways. The OpenLV project aims to work with community groups to help them find a useful way to use this data and work with them to develop an app.
A few ways we think OpenLV data could be used to benefit your community… (Though we would love to hear your ideas too):
- Owners of generation assets could make their installations more profitable by negotiating timed grid connections.
- If you want to build new generation assets you could find out the best place to install your renewable energy project.
- If you want to connect new buildings to the grid you could find out where you can get a new connection.
- If you work with fuel poor households you could you use this information to negotiate cheaper tariffs for bulk switching schemes.
- If you want to start up a car club or encourage local uptake of electric vehicles then data from the local grid will be essential to install charging points.
- If you want to inform your local community about their carbon footprint you could use OpenLV data, and then work on ways to reduce your community’s environmental impact.
- If you are in the process of neighbourhood planning you could identify areas where the grid has the capacity for new developments.
Can you think of any other ways you might be able to use this data?
Please follow this link to our survey to tell us whether this might be something you would be interested in: www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/OpenLV.
Expressing an initial interest in participating in the project does not commit you to further participation. Once we have determined initial levels of interest, there will be a selection process to recruit communities that will receive full support* to develop their app ideas.
The survey will remain open until 9am on Tuesday 11th July.
Thanks to all of you who came along to our promotion of the film ‘Tomorrow’ at the Courtyard last week – and also those of you who attended Chris Evan’s fascinating introduction to permaculture at our HGN Gathering on Wednesday.
One of the outcomes of the discussions after the showing of ‘Tomorrow’ was the question: what can we do – right now?
Chris responded to this at the HGN Gathering with suggestions about how we move towards action in our day-to-day lives. He suggested using the three core permaculture principles as the basis to our response:
- Decrease our personal use of non-renewable resources (Earth Care). This might simply be through growing our awareness of aspects of our daily routines, and making changes.
- Align with like-minded people (People Care). Including coming along to HGN Gatherings! & talking about what we are doing with friends and colleagues / sharing our ideas. Together we’ll create opportunities.
- Involve ourselves in earth cycles of ‘growing’ (Fair Share). This might be the growing of food or resources, and might simply be by making ‘smart’ shopping choices – buying local / organic etc
At our next HGN Gathering (Wednesday 19th July) we are planning a session focussing on opportunities to ‘Get Active’. We hope this session will be led by local organisation New Leaf Sustainable Development who have a number of exciting projects under development with opportunities for local people to get involved.
Please put the date in your diary and come along to find out more.
Thanks also to the Turnastone Peace Choir for coming along at 6pm prior to our Gathering on Wednesday. Joining voices with their simple inspiring songs makes for a tuned-in start to a focused evening of discussions. Ben Salmon and the Turnastone singers will be joining us again on the 19th July. Everyone is welcome to come and join in.
More to follow soon – in the meantime happy weekending & making Tomorrow Today …
Keep Herefordshire Warm and Age UK Hereford & Localities are happy to announce another round of Home Energy Checks, which will be available to residents across Herefordshire.
Funding has been secured for delivery of an additional 110 checks. These will be available to any residents over the age of 65. Homeowners and tenants (both private and social) are eligible.
During the home visits, a trained energy advisor can provide free and impartial advice on a range of topics including;
- Energy bills, tariffs & suppliers
- Problems with heating systems (inc help to access grant support for replacements)
- Heating control issues
- How to staying warm at home
- Financial grants and support (including the Warm Homes Discount and Priority Services Register).
In addition, a range of low cost energy measures can be installed, including LED lightbulbs, radiator panels and draught proofing measures.
To register their interest for a home energy check, residents (or anyone on their behalf) should call Keep Herefordshire Warm on 0800 677 1432 or email firstname.lastname@example.org