Transition Network UK News

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August 2014 - Transition Network Newsletter

Thu, 07/08/2014 - 15:47

Although we are mostly kicking our shoes off this month, we still have some inspiration for you, such as why is it so important to celebrate what you do, plus news of Transition Training in India, and more.

 

The Power of NOT Doing Stuff

Our theme for August is about NOT doing stuff. All too often our default as activists is to do do do, and to give ourselves very little time to pause, reflect or celebrate. I remember once going to the leaving party of the head of a large green NGO. He had been in charge there for a long time, and I asked him "what are you most looking forward to about not working here any more?" "Not working 7 days a week" came the reply. All through his kids growing up, he'd been working seven days a week. Here at Transition Network, we say that's not OK.

We try to model a different approach, one where we balance doing with being. One where it's OK to take a breather and spend time with family, take off with a tent and a sleeping bag, or head to the beach with some sausages and the barbecue. One where your kids remember who you are and get to spend enjoyable time in your company. We feel that having a month of the year where this site takes a breather means that what we produce for the rest of the year is more grounded, better rested, and more focused. No-one reads stuff you post in August anyway.

So we're off. Laptop off, mobile off. We'll be back in September when our theme will be 'Making Space for Nature' which promises to be fascinating. See you then. Have a good break. We'll leave you with this. Last August I wandered into a tent at a festival and saw Camille O'Sullivan singing the song she sings in this clip. A hairs on the back of the neck moment, awesome. Hoping that you get a few of those this summer.
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/rob-hopkins/2014-07/months-theme-power-not-doing-stuff


The Transitioner's Digest (July): Celebration
During July we set out to explore 5 questions: Why do you celebrate? Why is celebration important? What are the ingredients of good celebration? What is the wider context for celebration? What is the personal context for celebration?
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/rob-hopkins/2014-07/transitioners-digest-july

Divest? Then what?
Rob Hopkins was shocked to discover that put crudely and at it’s worst, for the damage generated by every £1 million invested by some philanthropic organisations, £10,000 is put up to try and clean up that mess.
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/rob-hopkins/2014-07/divest-then-what

Learning to Celebrate Failure
Fiona Ward reflects on what to do when things don’t work out as expected despite our best attempts.
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/rob-hopkins/2014-07/fiona-ward-learning-celebrate-10000-failure

Creating a Culture of Celebration
Sophy Banks on how to create a culture of appreciation and celebration.
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/rob-hopkins/2014-07/sophy-banks-creating-culture-celebration

All our stories about Celebration:
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/tags/celebration

NEWS OF THE NETWORK

Transition Network Strategy
In case you missed it last month, please take a look at what the Transition Network plans to focus on over the next three years and why.
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/news/2014-07-02/transition-networks-new-strategy

Web Service Update
This is a brief update on where the web project is at the end of July 2014.
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/ed-mitchell/2014-07/web-service-strategic-update-july-2014

REconomy Project
How to transform you local economy in just 1 day.
We want community-led economic development, the kind that’s just, ecologically regenerative, inclusive and equitable. Easier said than done. Yet for the past 3 years, we’ve been doing something that seems to be working. It’s relatively cheap and easy to do. Jay Tompt reports on the Local Entrepreneur Forum.
http://www.reconomy.org/how-to-transform-your-local-economy-in-one-day/  

Social Reporters

Urgency and the Long Game
Jay Tompt wonders what we can do faced with the growing cacophony of urgent calls.
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/stories/jay-tompt/2014-08/urgency-and-long-game

More stories from the Social Reporters here:
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/stories

TRANSITION FREE PRESS

Transition Free Press crew are now in full swing production for the next September issue. Don't miss out and order yours today!
http://transitionfreepress.org/2014/07/14/getting-it-out-there-autumn-issue-bundles-order-deadline-8th-august/

Fight to Save Grow Heathrow
News Editor Amy Hall reports on the eviction notice.
http://transitionfreepress.org/2014/07/27/grow-heathrow-transition-eviction/

 

TRAINING

Empowering Tribal Communities
One of our intrepid roving Transition Trainers, May East, turns up in another unexpected location and helps build resilience with Tribal Communities in India.
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/ben-brangwyn/2014-08/transition-tribal-communities-orissa-india

Training and Events
Launch onLine begins again on October 8th, and Inner Transition workshops are happening in Copenhagen and London.
Our full programme of trainings are here:
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/events/network-training

BOOKS

Tales of Cli-fi
A genre of books and movies called "cli-fi", set in the wake of some kind of major climate disaster, has been creeping out of the fantasy and science fiction sections of bookstores and libraries and into the mainstream.
http://grist.org/climate-energy/climate-change-the-hottest-thing-in-science-fiction/

 

COMING UP

OFF-GRID
14-17 August. Wiltshire
A 500 participant only event designed for local abundance and global sustainability, where small is beautiful and shared experience is the fabric of community. Use the discount code OFFGRID10 when buying tickets here:
http://offgrid-festival.co.uk/off-grid-2014-one-planet-community-festival/

UK Permaculture Convergence
12-14 September. London
A diverse range of workshops, practical sessions, a visit to a very well established local permaculture LAND centre, project case studies, Diploma presentations, networking, exhibitions, woodland walks, games, adventure activities and lots, lots more!
http://www.permaculture.org.uk/noticeboard/event/convergence/uk-permaculture-convergence-2014-09-12

Transition Network Roadshow:
Our Roadshows kicked off with two delicious days in Lancaster. 

  • St Andrews, Scotland 10-11 October 
  • Penwith, Cornwall Roadshow: 6-7 February 2015

 http://www.transitionnetwork.org/roadshow

 

Follow Transition Network on Twitter
http://twitter.com/#!/transitiontowns

Be a Friend on Facebook
http://www.facebook.com/transitionnetwork

Film Reviews
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/films 

Transition Youtube Channel
https://www.youtube.com/transitiontowns

Resources — Editor's Picks
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/resources

Find previous editions of the newsletter here
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/tags/transition-network-newsletter

Read this newsletter online 
https://www.transitionnetwork.org/news/2014-08-07/august-2014-transition-network-newsletter

Subscribe to Transition newsletter:
http://tinyurl.com/transitionregister

This newsletter is published on the first Friday of each month. 
Next newsletter is 5 September 2014

Newsletter Editor: Mike Grenville,
from Transition Forest Row for the Transition Network
Contact: mgrenville@gmail.com

Funding support for community energy peer mentoring!

Thu, 17/07/2014 - 11:07

Co-operatives UK have just announced some really useful-looking funding to enable mentoring and peer-to-peer support for community energy initiatives.  It can be used either by Transition groups seeking mentoring support for their emergent community energy companies, or for established initiatives who would like to be able to offer that support. We heard recently the impact such an approach is already having in Sussex.  You can read more about it, and how to apply, here.  It's a fast turnaround, the deadline for first round applications is August 8th.  See Frequently Asked Questions here

Below is a taster, its guidance for community groups seeking support: 

What types of groups will be eligible for support?

You will be one of a growing number of community energy groups and enterprises across the UK working to generate energy and to reduce demand through energy efficient products sharing all or most of the following characteristics:

  • Generating renewable energy including electricity and heat generation, including technologies such as solar PV, wind, hydro, or biomass
  • Interested in sharing the benefits and how surplus generated by projects will accrue to the whole community
  • Aiming to build community cohesion, and often have strong social aims, such as working to combat fuel poverty in the local area, providing an income stream for local projects, or engaging residents on energy efficiency issues.
  • Interested in democratic control, one member one vote, and aiming to build member participation
  • Turning to the use of community shares (equity) to raise finance for your scheme

You should be at a stage early enough in your journey and just setting up where you will benefit most from mentoring support. The only criteria is that you are not a well-established group already delivering a range of renewable energy projects.

Why Get Involved?

We can help you to develop and deliver projects in your community through a programme of mentoring support.

  • Peer mentoring – We have a pool of Peer Mentors to deliver the technical support, experience and knowledge to support communities across England to develop their community energy projects. This will come from experienced community practitioners, who can provide support based on first-hand experience
  • Inspiration – We will share information and good news stories about what can be achieved by community groups through case studies and through you the communities that sign up to the project
  • Network – You will be able to share ideas and connect with other community groups across England through our linked in forum
  • Information – We will provide regular information in our Resources and News and Events section to help provide you with up to date information on the variety of support available to you, funding, tools and inspirational ideas

July 2014 - Transition Network Newsletter

Thu, 03/07/2014 - 14:19

This month we can read about our new three year strategy and the possibility of creating a UK hub; the website theme on the relationship between politics and Transition is explored; REconomy has some inspiring reports and our Social Reporters explore the stories we tell ourselves. Plus the monthly world roundup, a new book a video and more to designed to inspire.

 

NEWS OF THE NETWORK

Transition Network Strategy 

We’re delighted to be able to publish the final version of Transition Network’s new three year strategy. It’s been a fascinating process working together as a team, TN staff and trustees, to develop this document in consultation with people in the wider Transition movement. We are now making it publicly available so everyone can see what we plan to focus on over the next three years and why. We’ll be reviewing how we’ve done and whether everything is still relevant each year and, as always, your feedback and ideas will be very welcome.
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/news/2014-07-02/transition-networks-new-strategy

TN’s role as UK National Hub

What we heard: A number of people questioned whether the Transition Network (TN) is playing this role effectively and, indeed, whether it is an appropriate role for TN to undertake. Some people expressed a desire for a stand-alone UK Hub, designed by and accountable to UK Transition Initiatives. A couple of people also talked about the more direct, practical support that a UK National Hub might be able to offer to UK Transition initiatives.

What we will do: We would very much like to explore this idea further with UK Transitioners. We certainly want to share and seek feedback on TN’s plans for UK-focused work and we are keen to support UK Transition Initiatives (TI) to develop stronger connections between each other and with TN. We’re also making an effort to be more explicit about which aspects of TN’s work and resources are internationally-focused and which are UK-specific. We’re not sure at this stage whether there’s a need for the UK National Hub to be a completely separate organisation from TN - there would be advantages and disadvantages to this - but we would love to see much clearer representation from the UK within the National Hubs Group network. We’re also very conscious that Transition Scotland and Transition Ireland already exist and there are strong networks developing in Wales. So we’re not assuming that a UK-wide structure is the right one to go for.

The UK roadshow events that we are planning for the autumn of 2014 and the spring of 2015 will give us an opportunity to take this conversation forward with Transitioners generally, but it would be great to hear before then from any individuals in the UK who are willing and able to put time into discussing the issue (we’ve already had a couple of volunteers). If a small group of people come forward, TN would be delighted to support them to meet and start to develop their own vision of what a National Hub might look like and what it might do. If you’re interested or would like to hear more about this proposal, please contact sarahmcadam@transitionnetwork.org

Announcing the 4 Transition Roadshow hosts!

We are delighted to announce the four initiatives selected to host our four 2014-15 Transition Roadshows. We had 9 applications from Transition initiatives across the UK, and after much deliberation can reveal that the hosts chosen are Transition University St. Andrews, in Fife, Scotland, Transition Penwith in Cornwall, Transition Bristol in Somerset and Transition Town Berkhamsted in Hertfordshire. The exact dates and details have yet to be arranged but will be announced shortly. They offer a great opportunity to try a different approach to our usual annual conference (which looks set to be back for 2015).
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/news/2014-07-02/announcing-4-transition-roadshow-hosts

Last chance to book for the Transition Northwest Conference!

12-13 July Lancaster
Our first Roadshow is booking up fast- there are no lunches, or b&b’s places left, but entry is still available at time of writing.
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/events/2014-07-12/north-west-transition-conference

Powys Networking Day

Powys in Transition has gained funding to setup a regional network of local organisations involved in Transition or Low Carbon Communities. Mike Thomas went along to the launch event.
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/news/2014-06-26/mike-thomas-visits-powys-networking-day

 

NETWORK NEWS 

The Transitioners' Digest (June): "Is Transition political?"

This month our theme has been Transition and Politics. Our editorial concluded that the answer is yes. Deeply. But it isn't explicitly so. It comes in under the radar, and that really matters.
We have interviews from the Mayor of Frome, former MP Alan Simpson, Natalie Bennett, leader of the Green Party, Greg Barker MP, Minister of State at the Department of Energy and Climate Change, and Caroline Flint MP, Labour's Shadow Energy Minister. Plus Sophy Banks thoughts on what politics might look like were it "to orient to what truly makes us happy as humans".
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/rob-hopkins/2014-06/transitioners-digest-june 

The June 2014 Round-up of What’s Happening out in the World of Transition

Another bumper edition, busting at the seams with news of how Transition is manifesting itself around the world in a dazzling diversity of ways. Stories around the UK from Belper, Cambridge, Chepstow, Chesterfield, Crystal Palace, Reading, St Albans, and Totnes. News from other countries Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Croatia, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Spain, South Africa, and USA.
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/news/2014-06-09/june-2014-round-what-s-happening-out-world-transition

 

REconomy 

REconomy goes global!

Five national hubs have been exploring how they might support REconomy-type activity in each country - let’s begin with hearing about Croatia’s groundbreaking event in Zagreb:
http://www.reconomy.org/reconomy-the-good-economy-in-croatia/ 

Economic enablers, REconomy style 

Transition groups are doing a range of projects that support new and existing local businesses, including creation of infrastructure - here’s some inpsiring examples:
http://www.reconomy.org/economic-enablers/

 

SOCIAL REPORTERS

Our Mainstream Stories 

Jay Tompt calls on us to re-appropriate the word 'mainstream'.
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/stories/jay-tompt/2014-06/our-mainstream-stories

The Ukraine, Sharks and Compost Loos 

Chris Bird asks about the dominant stories we come up against when we try to bring about change, in particular what we should do with our shit!
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/stories/chris-bird/2014-06/ukraine-sharks-and-compost-loos

Everything We Dream of Makes the Impossible Possible 

Steph Bradley travels across Wales hearing and sharing tales of community and healing.
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/stories/steph-bradley/2014-06/everything-we-dream-makes-impossible-possible

 

BOOKS

Educating for Hope in Troubled Times  

A new book has just been published which is a great handbook for school teachers and educators in Transition. Called “Educating for Hope in Troubled Times: Climate change and the transition to a post-carbon future”, it explores the three issues of climate change, peak oil and the limits to growth that teachers and learners need to know about and be more prepared for. There is a tendency in schools to avoid ‘big’ issues and this book helps teachers to identify positive ways of engaging with them, sharing success stories (including a number from Transition groups) and sources of inspiration and hope. There are many suggestions for classrooms activities plus up to date information and case studies. The author Dave Hicks (formerly Professor in the School of Education, Bath Spa University) says “In fast changing times yesterday is no longer an accurate guide to tomorrow, so how we help young people think about their future is of major importance.This book is about developing new ways of being and seeing and the exploration of new horizons.”
£26.99 ~ Available from Institute of Education Press at:
http://ioepress.co.uk/books/social-justice-equality-and-human-rights/education-for-hope/

 

TRAINING 

The next Launch onLine begins October 8th. Transition Launch trainings in London UK, Poppau Germany, and Charlottestown, Canada. Thrive- Hallaberg Sweden, and Train the Trainers Alingsas Sweden. Details: http://www.transitionnetwork.org/events/network-training  

COMING UP

One Day in Transition
Young Transitioners creating their own jobs.
12 July Bristol
An event for young adults looking for ways to create Transition livelihoods. It is a workshop in its own right that also introduces One Year in Transition. Past and present students from One Year in Transition are the hosts. They will also be talking about their own community-based projects, the experience of doing the One Year in Transition course, and offering mini brainstorms on the project ideas that participants would like to discuss with them.
http://www.oneyearintransition.org

Real World Economics
19-20 July Dartington
Kick starting the new economy on your doorstep.
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/events/2014-07-19/real-world-economics

Wellbeing and the New Economy
9 August Rotterdam
Create a vision for a New Economy centred on shared values and ecological renewal.
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/events/2014-08-09/wellbeing-and-new-economy

 

VIDEO: What is Transition? 

We asked members of Transition Town Lewes how they would describe what Transition is. The event going on in the background is their 'Seven Year Itch' event, celebrating all the great things they have achieved during that time. 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0aDmbJFq4OI

NEXT MONTH 

July's theme on the website is 'Transition and Celebration'

QUOTE OF THE MONTH

"We cannot paper over the cracks anymore; we must delve deeply into the very fabric of all it means to be human and begin decision making from the heart."
Steph Bradley

Follow Transition Network on Twitter
http://twitter.com/#!/transitiontowns

Be a Friend on Facebook
http://www.facebook.com/transitionnetwork

Film Reviews
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/films 

Transition Youtube Channel
https://www.youtube.com/transitiontowns

Resources — Editor's Picks
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/resources

Find previous editions of the newsletter here
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/tags/transition-network-newsletter

Read this newsletter online 
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/news/2014-07-03/july-2014-transition-network-newsletter

Subscribe to Transition newsletter:
http://tinyurl.com/transitionregister

This newsletter is published on the first Friday of each month. 
Next newsletter 8 August 2014

Newsletter Editor: Mike Grenville,
from Transition Forest Row for the Transition Network
Contact: mgrenville@gmail.com

Transition Network's new strategy

Wed, 02/07/2014 - 11:05

We're delighted to be able to publish the final version of Transition Network's new three year strategy. It's been a fascinating process working together as a team, TN staff and trustees, to develop this document in consultation with people in the wider Transition movement.

We are now making it publicly available so everyone can see what we plan to focus on over the next three years and why. We'll be reviewing how we've done and whether everything is still relevant each year and, as always, your feedback and ideas will be very welcome.

And here's some feedback about the consultation process - what we heard from people and what we've done in response...Introduction

Thank you to every one of the 736 people in 48 countries who viewed this document in draft and especially to the 71 people who provided comments in writing. We asked a headline question about your satisfaction with the draft survey and got this response...

Overall, I think the draft strategy... Set's a clear, useful direction for Transition Network61%Is broadly helpful, but needs some further work34%Needs to be changed completely5%

It was great to receive written comments on the draft strategy from the National Hubs in Belgium, Brazil, France, Hungary, Israel, Italy, Portugal, Romania and Spain. They responded very positively to the document - mostly they endorsed the planned outputs and activities and started to discuss how we all might take this work forward together. There were also a few useful comments about aspects of the document which came over as UK-centric.

Some general comments from the National Hubs:

This strategy is fantastic, very inspiring for our hub, great job!! I often wanted to write "this part is very important too"...

We very much appreciate this document. In our national feedback round, the response was that this work is very inspiring as an example for our national organisation. It gives us motivation to work on a concrete proposal for the formalisation of our national hub.

I would like to express our satisfaction about the quality of the document and thank you all for the job you are doing.

It makes a lot of sense, and is built as a macro scale of a TI (with National Hubs and projects as working groups).

Here's our analysis of all the written comments received and information about our response...Style/language/length of documentWhat we heard:

Some people found the document too corporate, others said it contained transition jargon and needed to be shorter and sharper. However, many more people responded positively than were critical, saying they found the document clear and helpful.

What we will do:

We're going to accept that we'll never please everyone and are not going to amend the style of the document at this stage or play around too much with the format or length. We're going to take what we've learned from this process, including all your comments, into the work TN is now doing to review how we tell the Transition story.

Supporting people 'doing' TransitionWhat we heard:

People liked the focus on streamlining, clarifying and improving the support TN offers and on nurturing peer-to-peer support (whether between individuals, Initiatives or National Hubs). Some of the National Hubs reminded us that there is very little support or information offered in languages other than English and that the National Hubs themselves don't currently have the capacity or resources to translate much Transition-related material.

What we will do:

It's great (and a little bit overwhelming) to hear about the appetite for improved support and resources. We've just consulted on the next stage in the development of the TN support framework and people seem pleased that we're heading in the right direction. Our aim is to make it much easier to identify which are the key pieces of information that would benefit from being translated into other languages, but we're conscious that this is much better done by people who understand the particular context in which Transition is operating within their country. We have secured some funding to help develop the capacity of National Hubs and, if they see it as a priority, to enable them to pay for translation. We're also seeing National Hubs starting to group around some of the main global languages and co-operating to produce materials that can be used in more than one country - we'll be alert to anything TN can do to support this very positive development.

Social justice/diversityWhat we heard:

There was strong support for the references to social justice throughout the document (although a couple of people felt this was taking us into difficult territory politically). A number of people commented that the Transition movement is still relatively narrow in its appeal and suggested TN should be doing more to ensure that the ideas and benefits of Transition reach all sections of society.

What we will do:

We're currently seeking funding to enable us to identify and share the best UK examples of TIs and other similar groups working inclusively and/or addressing social inequality. We think there is a lot of learning to be exchanged across the National Hubs network on this, since the focus of Transition activity varies considerably around the world. And an important objective behind the work we're doing to update the Transition story is to make sure TN speaks consistently and powerfully about the importance of social justice, transmitting messages that reach and make sense to as wide a range of people as possible.

TN's role as UK National HubWhat we heard:

A number of people questioned whether TN is playing this role effectively and, indeed, whether it is an appropriate role for TN to undertake. Some people expressed a desire for a stand-alone UK Hub, designed by and accountable to UK Transition Initiatives. A couple of people also talked about the more direct, practical support that a UK National Hub might be able to offer to UK Transition initiatives.

What we will do:

We would very much like to explore this idea further with UK Transitioners. We certainly want to share and seek feedback on TN's plans for UK-focused work and we are keen to support UK Transition Initiatives to develop stronger connections between each other and with TN. We're also making an effort to be more explicit about which aspects of TN's work and resources are internationally-focused and which are UK-specific. We're not sure at this stage whether there's a need for the UK National Hub to be a completely separate organisation from TN - there would be advantages and disadvantages to this - but we would love to see much clearer representation from the UK within the National Hubs Group network. We're also very conscious that Transition Scotland and Transition Ireland already exist and there are strong networks developing in Wales. So we're certainly not assuming that a UK-wide structure is the right one to go for.

The UK roadshow events that we are planning for the autumn of 2014 and the spring of 2015 will give us an opportunity to take this conversation forward with Transitioners generally, but it would be great to hear before then from any individuals in the UK who are willing and able to put time into exploring the issue (we've already had a couple of volunteers). If a small group of people come forward, TN would be delighted to support them to meet and start to develop their own vision of what a National Hub might look like and what it might do. If you're interested and/or would like to talk more about this proposal, please contact sarahmcadam@transitionnetwork.org.

Partnering with other organisations and networksWhat we heard:

A number of people commented on the need and potential for TN to work more closely with organisations and networks with similar aims and values - to avoid duplication and together achieve a greater impact. The examples given were many and various, drawn from across the environmental and social justice movements and beyond.

What we will do:

Developing effective partnerships is a priority for TN over the next three years. We know we have a better chance of delivering each of our desired strategic outcomes if we work with other organisations and networks so, rather than constantly repeating our intention to build partnerships, we stated it as a general intention in the section labelled How we will work (see paragraph F headed Collaborating and looking for synergies). The challenge - and we know it's the same for National Hubs and Transition Initiatives - is to work out which potential partnerships to prioritise from amongst all the great organisations and networks that are out there and to find ways to collaborate which are light-touch, don't require us to set up cumbersome structures and which support rather than burden people in the wider Transition movement. We're experimenting with a couple of interesting alliances at the moment - all at a very early stage, but we will share what we learn from these experiments and you should see evidence of us being increasingly connected to others who are working to support change.

Working to influence policyWhat we heard:

A number of people asked whether there was more TN could do to influence politicians and argue for policy changes that would make it easier for Transition to have an impact at a local level.

What we will do:

We're not sure! We are still a very small organisation compared to the many bodies that are set up to lobby policy-makers and we think it's important that our primary focus is on inspiring, encouraging, connecting, supporting and training people to take action locally. We are also trying to work internationally wherever possible, so it wouldn't be possible or appropriate for us to devote lots of time and resources to influencing a single national Government. But we know that relatively minor changes in policy can sometimes open up new possibilities for many individual Transition initiatives and we want to respond positively to the increasing interest we're finding in community level action at both an international and a national level. So we're going to explore this further, in discussion with National Hubs Group and have mentioned this in the strategy.

Keeping open to new ideasWhat we heard:

Don't get set in your ways and ideas, stay open and flexible with the em-phasis on experimentation and responding to feedback, keep your strategy, and indeed the very existence of TN in its current form, under review.

What we will do:

This feels very important to us. As we get slightly bigger as an organisation and as the Transition movement grows in scale and impact, we're trying to find ways to be more structured about what we're doing without losing our nimbleness and creativity. We've designed this strategy to cover a three year period - anything longer feels much too difficult to predict - and we've committed to reviewing how we're delivering against it every year. Feedback from the wider Transition movement will help keep us on our toes. We know we won't be able to do everything you'd like us to do and we'll certainly make mistakes, but please keep letting us know what's working well and what you'd like us to change.

Announcing the 4 Transition Roadshow hosts!

Wed, 02/07/2014 - 00:05

We are delighted to announce the four initiatives selected to host our four 2014-15 Transition Roadshows.  We had 9 applications from Transition initiatives across the UK, and after much deliberation can reveal that the hosts chosen are Transition University St. Andrews, in Fife, Scotland, Transition Penwith in Cornwall, Transition Bristol in Somerset and Transition Town Berkhamsted in Hertfordshire.  The exact dates and details have yet to be arranged but will be announced shortly.  Our gratitude to everyone who applied, and for the time and creativity poured into all the applications.  It was a very tough call.

In the meantime, we’d like to remind you about the first pilot Roadshow, taking place in less than 2 weeks in Lancaster.  It’s going to be fantastic, and there are still places.  It’s going to feature all sorts of stuff: workshops on personal resilience, local currencies, community energy, retrofitting homes, REconomy, local food, 'sustainable dying', support for Transition and communicating climate change.  You'll also be able to find out about all the wonders being created by Transition City Lancaster, hear talks and have an evening of celebration with music by Howard Haigh and The Men of the Hour. You can still book a place, come along!

We are really excited about these Roadshows.  They offer a great opportunity to try a different approach to our usual annual conference (which looks set to be back for 2015 by the way), one with the potential to bring a great burst of energy to both an initiative and its surrounding region.  We hope to see you at one, or more, of them.  

Mike Thomas visits Powys networking day

Thu, 26/06/2014 - 13:26

I was really happy to go to the county network for Powys Transition and Low Carbon Communities Network launch event on 29 March and hear about some great projects and meet some keen Transitioners in Powys. Powys in Transition was successful in gaining funding from the National Lottery through the PAVO's Community Voice programme "One Powys Connecting Voices" to setup a regional network of local organisations involved in Transition or Low Carbon Communities within the Powys region. They have employed an administrator to help manage this process, who works one day a week and will be employed for five years.

As well as this the network has funds to offer member groups free places on Transition Training courses, organise annual county gatherings, provide promotional materials, help with resident opinion surveys and provide opportunities for sharing knowledge experience and resources.

I am really interested in Powys, as they are one of the areas of the UK where they are beginning to develop a regional network of groups. This model could be really beneficial to Transition groups as interconnectedness and peer support could enable groups to support each other. At the event you could see people were already chatting to each other and sharing experiences which is crucial to building strong networks.

The day itself was fascinating.  I got to hear about many great projects. Renew Wales director Rob Procter told us about how they had got over 200 local community projects to begin to think about climate change and act to address it.  They have done this through over 50 Peer Mentors and networks of like-minded groups and organisations. The project is based on bottom up action.

What I found really inspiring was the range of groups they had worked with, such as tenants groups, rugby clubs, faith groups and community councils amongst others. Through working with these groups they had setup Hydro power, community energy projects,  community building improvements, food projects and much more. 

We heard about a car share project in Llanidloes which was doing very well and helping lots of people to get around as well as reducing car use in general. Then we heard about community based renewable energy form Jeremy Thorp of Sharenergy. Finally before lunch we heard about the some great Permaculture work that Steve Jones had been doing in Wales and Liverpool that has engaged disadvantaged communities in food growing and much more.

Just before lunch there was a Powys Network AGM and election of officers and it was great to see people coming forward to sit on the Management Committee, this means that the network will have ownership and accountability to its members.

After a great lunch we had a World Cafe where people came up with their own topics and had meetings on them. I was there to host a space on how Transition Network could help a regional network and Transition Initiatives.  During this session I heard about some great projects happening in Powys. 

I also heard about the challenges that groups were facing such as energy poverty as lots of people not being able to afford energy now and the floods that have been occurring; concerns about the organisation of regional networks in terms of how a regional network register on the TN website; what type of constitution should a regional or county network have and the unique support needs that a regional network has compared to Transition Initiatives.

There were also questions about how can Transition groups monitor and evaluate their work so they know whether they are making a difference, how can groups keep up their momentum and issues of funding and developing shared visions.

Other workshops looked at different questions, such as how to communicate the latest facts on climate change to people in their communities; how food systems can be developed; how can volunteers be supported and how can community owned wind power and electric bikes be promoted. Out of these workshops came loads of great ideas on how to move things forward. This was a great example of the power of coming together to look at issues together, using a collective intelligence to discuss solutions. 

At the end of the event was a Question Time style panel activity where all the speakers from the morning where quizzed on a variety of topics, before everyone headed off back to their hometowns having made some new connections, a greater understanding of the Powys Network and what it can do and hearing about some great projects. 

Transition shaping energy policy in Ireland?

Thu, 12/06/2014 - 10:36

We are experiencing a convergence of events that leave us in no doubt that Transition’s time has arrived in Ireland - at long last!  There seems to be greater acceptance that climate change needs to be addressed. Long overdue you may think, but it was a hard fight. There are still strong pockets of resistance which are feeding on the discontent of home owners fighting the proposed industrial wind farms for energy export.  A few governance changes are also happening. There is local government reform which has been designed for greater public participation, the Aarhus convention came into effect last year and a new national policy on energy is being drafted.

Over the past number of years more and more people have been alerted to energy issues. There was proposed drilling for oil off the coast of Dublin, a massive threat of fracking on both sides of the border and the Shell to Sea battle has been raging for many years. However the issue that has woken the greatest number of people up is the proposed industrial wind farms for the midlands.

2,500 industrial turbines across 5 counties in the Midlands. This has alerted people to the fact that the planned grid upgrade currently being contested goes way beyond our needs and is probably being constructed to accommodate mass wind generation.

Last November a regional Transition hub hosted a national conversation about energy. The People’s Energy Charter, PEC, evolved out of that meeting and has become an alliance of energy related groups from all over the country. The PEC has one agenda - comprehensive public participation in all energy plans, policies and projects. This means that PEC has been working primarily with policy makers trying to evoke a conversation about comprehensive public participation.

Meanwhile the advisory body to the government, National Economic and Social Council, have been trying to figure out how to achieve community acceptance of wind energy. During the course of this dilemma they commissioned research to help with the problem. A member of the TINI core group attended a workshop to discuss the recommendations of the research. The pre workshop papers were a gift! The recommendations are for a national energy transition plan! You can read on that workshop here.

On May 24th we held a national transition meeting to discuss these converging circumstances. There was a unanimous decision that TINI support the work of PEC and seize the opportunity to showcase the transition process. We will have a full report and pictures on that meeting soon.

So what we have now in Ireland is a Transition-led policy group chasing comprehensive public participation in a national energy transition plan as recommended to the National Economic and Social Council. Meanwhile TINI groups are demonstrating what an energy transition plan looks like.

TINI have requested a meeting with NESC so that we may explain the Transition process and how it has worked in Ireland to date. The email is available to see here. Fingers crossed all goes well and we meet them soon :)

By Theresa Carter, Transition Ireland & Northern Ireland Network.

The June 2014 Round-up of What’s Happening out in the World of Transition

Mon, 09/06/2014 - 15:40

Welcome to the June 2014 roundup.  It's another bumper edition, busting at the seams with news of how Transition is manifesting itself around the world in a dazzling diversity of ways.  We start in the UK with the launch of the new Totnes Pound. May 20th saw the release of a full suite of beautiful notes, at an event in the packed Civic Hall.  The t£10 note features Ben Howard, local musician and winner of two Brit Awards in 2012.  Ben came to the launch and is pictured below with the Totnes Pound team.  

Here is a report of the launch from the Western Morning News.  It was also reported at the launch that Totnes would soon be getting an e-currency, supported by the Bristol Pound.  This was reported in a number of local papers.  The funding comes from the Technology Strategy Board, whose CEO, Iain Gray, said:

"This is a particularly exciting initiative, which provides companies with an opportunity to test the feasibility and commercial potential of their technology-focussed ideas for attracting shoppers and retailers to UK high streets."

New Lion Brewery, the new social enterprise brewery set up as part of the wider new economy work in the town, brewed a special bottled beer to celebrate, called 'The Totnes Pound: an IPA that's defiantly positive about Totnes'.  Here's the label: 

Also at the launch were two people from Aubervilliers in France, visiting Totnes to learn more about Transition.  They kept an online diary of their visit which you can find here. TTT's Arts Network held a one day course in using rammed earth and earthship construction.  Here's a short video they made of it: 

 

Crystal Palace Transition Town just celebrated their third birthday.  They had a big AGM event, which looked a little like this: 

... and they produced this great short film setting showing what they've been up to over the last 12 months (Spoiler Alert: lots)...

They've also been busy working on the community garden at St John's.  Here they are: 

The poster for their AGM is, in itself, a brilliant celebration of all the great work the group has been up to over the past 12 months: 

Transition Town Tooting are building up to this year's Foodival, by posting photos of the plants that are being grown in preparation of the event.  Given that it's in September, the plants are still young, like this pepper...

We reported a while ago about how Melbourne Area Transition had set up Whistlewood Community Woodland and used a community share launch to raise the money to buy 10 acres of land.  Well Whistlewood was mentioned in a piece in the Guardian recently about communities acquiring their own assets. Here's a taste:

"We aim to establish a new type of community woodland based on permaculture, which combines food production, forestry and education," says Sarah Spencer from the group, which is a registered co-op and this winter planted its first 1,400 trees.

The Transition movement glowed with pride recently as OVESCO won the Ashden Award for Community Energy (see photo above).  Receiving the award, Chris Rowland of OVESCO said:

"We want to see a POWER generating revolution in the UK. We believe that community owned energy companies are an essential part in making that happen. 

At OVESCO we hope that our success will inspire others to take action in their communities, so that we can build the world anew and community owned renewable energy becomes the new normal.   

We believe this is totally possible.  Thank you".

Here is the short video that the Ashden Awards people made about OVESCO to be shown on the night: 

 

As part of the Chepstow Festival, Transition Chepstow will be running 'An Evening Town Walk with Transition Chepstow' on June 30, 2014 @ 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm.  Anyone interested is invited to meet outside the library.  It's free, and they say "Enjoy an evening stroll around Chepstow and learn more about Transition Chepstow and it’s projects". 

The Southern Daily Echo reported:

A WILLOW arch above the River Test will be one of the landmarks of this year’s Romsey Festival.

Transition Town Romsey TTR is inviting the public to get involved in a unique art project, entitled Amplifying the Test, with sculptor Trudi Lloyd Williams. 

Transition St Albans are trying to get local people signed up for Transition Streets.  If you live locally, you can do so here. Here's an article from the local paper about it:

 Transition Belper just held their Belper Goes Green Festival for the second time.  Here's their advert thingy:

... and a short film about the 2013 Festival...

 

Transition Reading just held their latest AGM, and a Repair Cafe too... 

Transition and Draughtbusting got a mention in an article in the Guardian about energy efficiency

"Draughtbuster” Sarah Nicholl runs workshops along the south coast and says people are often surprised when their new double-glazed window units are revealed to be leaking around the edges. “They may be double-glazed, handmade and beautiful but if they are poorly fitted you can have cold draughts coming in all the way round,” she says. Sarah gives workshops via the fast-growing Transition Town network, a community-based movement encouraging people to be more self-sufficient in areas such as food, energy and transportation.

These Repair Cafes are all the rage it seems.  Transition Cambridge held their first one, and published this map so people could find their way about what was on offer:

Transition Chesterfield have been at it too, issuing the following invitation:

Bring anything broken along to the repair cafe and the team will try and fix it for you. 

A 50 minutes long film was presented on Croatian television about the Transition movement and the Reconomy project (mostly in English with Croatian subtitles).  Unfortunately it doesn't have the ability to embed the film here, but I really recommend, it's great. 

This from Josue in Belgium: "The annual conference of the French speaking initiatives took place in Brussels the 24th May (see pic below). The sunny day began with some games and mapping. Then some information was given about Transition around the world, the regional network and the resilient economy program... A great shared and colorful meal followed. Then we had an open space, a song and a celebration together and with the Portuguese Transition hub by Skype. We also met with other people and associations that were in the area to celebrate skill sharing. A funny day in Transition!

Also, Ath en Transition just began their first crowdfunding project for their Transition Streets program. The idea is to find money to make the program more funny and inclusive: If some families, low budget or others, need some materials for the action they choose, the Transition group want to be able to lend or give them (Ea : bike trailer, water-saving shower, compost tower...). The idea of the project is to lower their bill and their carbon footprint, and having fun. So if you want to help this Transition Streets project to be more inclusive and funny, you can go to this page



In May, we also had our first "Transition Thrive" training in Brussels the 17 & 18 May, facilitated by Naresh Giangrande, with two trainers from Belgium, Josué Dusoulier and Bart Vanden Driessche. Pioneers of Transition in Belgium were there to review the progress on their projects. The diagnostic tool was much appreciated, as well as various theoretical and practical contributions and exchanges between participants. They went back in their initiatives with the support of pairs in neighbouring initiatives, and of course packed with ideas to helptheir initiative to move to their next steps. Here in Belgium, we really want to thank Naresh for his coming and for sharing his experience of transition around the world!"

In Ireland, TINI (Transition Ireland & Northern Ireland Network) have been doing amazing work in helping to shape energy policy in Ireland.  You can read the full story here.  In Canada, Transition KW were at EcoFestWR to promote their Climate Action Toolkit.  Here they are at their stall:

They also just published their latest newsletter.  In France, apparently the word 'Transition' has been chosen as 'Word of the Year' at the 10th La Charité-sur-Loire Festival. 

In the US, Transition Houston are building up to rolling out a US version of Transition Streets. They just held a meeting addressed by Gerald Herd, a member of the NARI Houston Chapter, who discussed building insulation: types, uses, strategies, etc.

In July Rob Hopkins will visit Germany and is going to participate on the presentation of the German language version of the book ’The Power of Just Doing Stuff’. The events are going to be at 2th July 19:00h at Böll-Stiftung Berlin and at 3th July 19:00h in Audimax of University Bielefeld. On the event you can met also Gerd Wessling who contributed to the German edition and who translated the book, and other active members of D/A/CH Transition movement. 

Gerd gave a talk in Hannover, I think in 2010, but the film only just made it onto YouTube.  Here it is:

Part Two here.  Also from Germany, here is Andreas Bauermeister of Transition initiative Weimar im Wandel discussing Transition:

In Spain, a screening of In Transition 2.0 was followed by a short video message from Rob, and a couple of days later we had the following email:

"I'm glad to share with you our yesterday success. We showed your video and at the end we create a new Transition group in Madrid, so we're very happy, thanks a lot!!!!"

Go Madrid Transition... keep us all posted!

Rob also presented virtually to the G21 Swisstainability Conference last week.  Here's a photo someone tweeted of him in action:

From the 3rd of July 2014 (International plastic bag free day), Greyton aims to become South Africa’s first town to phase out single use plastic shopping bags. This is a drive initiated by Greyton Transition Town (GTT) and supported and assisted by Hayley McLellan from Rethink the Bag. This is just one of the many creative waste reduction programmes run in Greyton.  Here is a clip of them on News24 TV talking about it:

 

Peter Langlands, co-founder of Transition Town Guildford in Australia, appeared at the Strictly Hypothetical event in the city, whose theme was PERTH 2050 - Post Climate Change in the World's Most Isolated City.  Here's a clip of his introduction:

 

Here is a story from Brazil thanks to Isabela Maria Gomez de Menezes: "Brazil is living a very unique moment. The World Cup is putting some light about our problems with corruption,  lack of infrastructure  and how do we exercise our citizenship. 

And Transition Granja Viana region is also living an opportunity moment,the revision of the master plan of the municipality. It is a plan made from a scientific diagnosis of the physical, social, economic, political and administrative situation of the city, the city and its region, presenting a set of proposals for the future socioeconomic development and future uses of spatial organization of urban land, the networks infrastructure and key elements of the urban structure of the city and for the city. These proposals are to set short, medium and long term, and approved by municipal law.

After three preparatory meetings for review of the master plan of Cotia, something was awakened in our community.  On 28, May, we began a cycle of talks about the Master Plan involving technical guests, people of the City Council and the community .

This was an initiative of Transition Granja Viana in partnership with other movements of our region, as: Site da Granja, MDGV| Movement for the Defense of Granja Viana, Motion Vivo Morro Grande and JDA Magazine. The first meeting drew 25 people, the second drew 43 and we could see that they are really motivated to make a difference in our city. 

In a climate of respect and peaceful spot, a social collaborative technique has been used to conduct dialogues called "Aquarius”, that is a circle in which the guests talked, listened and debated in contemporary exercise of democracy with a relay chairs. Only participating to understand!

Divergences, convergences, culture of peace and creative intelligence scored the first meeting of this working group that was born with power, grounding, ethics and good humor. This is the policy that we dream for the 21st century. 

After years of inactivity, we're seeing the community of our region mobilize and exercise their citizenship and collaborate in the planning of our region. The Transition Group also created a Facebook group for everyone to put their dreams and desires for the region.  We have two more meetings to go and one thing we now, never before our community discussed so profoundly the future of our region".

In Hungary, as part of the ’Communities in Transition’ project which started last year, a 2 day long workshop was organised for representatives of 12 Hungarian Transition initiatives and other sustainable community initiatives. Participantes have learnt about the Transition movement and its methodology, discussed what's important for their communities, what are their strengthens, what kind of tools do they need to set up and run succesfull a community project.

Despite of the almost 40 degree hot temperature attendees had a lot of fun, inspiration and help from each other. Delicious meals were served made from ingredients of the local organic garden which is run by one of the most successful Hungarian social cooperatives.

As a next step of the project, members of initiatives are going to visit each other to study and learn new practicies e.g. paper briquettes technology, permaculture gardening, urban community gardening.

More next month: do send us any stories you'd like included. 

 

Your chance to experience One Day in Transition

Wed, 04/06/2014 - 16:54

We've written before here about the wonder that is One Year in Transition.  It is, in essence, a year-long, part-time and low-cost programme that helps young adults create a livelihood in the community work they dream of doing. Booking is now open for the next year's programme which starts in September.  Now here's your opportunity to experience a taster of what it's all about.  One Day in Transition: how to build your community project is a unique one-day course as an initiating spark for young adults.    

The event takes place on Saturday 12th July at Hamilton House, Bristol.  If you are thinking of doing the IYT programme, come and join the current students as they reach the end of the programme and hear about the course at first hand. Bring your idea for a community project, explore how you can make it real, get a taste of the 1YT experience that gets young adults into the work they dream of doing.

Cost is £5 unwaged or £20 waged.  To register interest, for more information, or to ask for a phone or Skype chat, contact the course leader Isabel Carlisle on: isabelcarlisle@transitionnetwork.org or 01803 847976.

June 2014 - Transition Network Newsletter

Wed, 04/06/2014 - 16:48

This month news that that the Transition roadshow could be coming to a region near you, starting with Lancaster in July. We have the monthly World Roundup, the Digest introduces the 'Transition and Health' articles posted in May, REconomy offers tips to transform your local economy, our Social Reporters are back and Transition Free Press has a new App.

NEWS OF THE NETWORK

Would You Like to Host a Transition Roadshow? 

We are now inviting applications to host one of four UK Regional Transition Roadshows to be held between October 2014 and March 2015. We'd love to hear an expression of interest from you if you fancy hosting one by Friday 20th June. Full information and a form for applying:
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/rob-hopkins/2014-05/would-you-host-transition-roadshow

Roadshows Start in Lancaster July 12-13

We have some inspiring workshops lined up for the Lancaster event. And as always with Transition Network events we say no to boring conferences, and will be embracing the diversity, wisdom, and enjoyment of each other’s company throughout the day. In the evening, we have 'Howard Haigh and Men of The Hour'  playing a vibrant mix of salsa, funk, and blues. On the second day of this gathering you can check out the local renewable energy company, eco houses, and community farm, travelling from place to place by electric bike or car!
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/events/2014-07-12/north-west-transition-conference

Your Chance to Experience One Day in Transition

How to build your community project is a unique one-day course as an initiating spark for young adults and is a taster of what 'One Year in Transition' is all about.
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/news/2014-06-04/your-chance-experience-one-day-transition

NETWORK NEWS

The Transitioners' Digest (May)

Our theme this month has been 'Transition and Health'. We've been reflecting on where Transition and public health overlap and the benefits all round that could be gained by forging a more explicit link between the two. A collection of interviews by Rob Hopkins and articles published over the last month:
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/rob-hopkins/2014-06/transitioners-digest-may 

The May 2014 Round-up of What’s Happening out in the World of Transition

World news from Germany, France, Belgium, Hungary, Portugal, Brazil, USA. Around the UK we hear from Crystal Palace, Southall, Tooting, Bridport, Bristol, Dorchester, Horncastle, New Forest, Peterborough, Salisbury, Stourbridge, Totnes and Wivenhoe.
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/rob-hopkins/2014-05/may-2014-round-what-s-happening-out-world-transition

REconomy

Does Your Local Economy Need Transforming?

The REconomy Project is here to help your Transition group do this. Over the last 2 years we’ve learned a lot about what REconomy is, who’s doing it and what it looks like in the UK and beyond. Find out more about this project on our much simplified website here.
http://www.reconomy.org/about-reconomy/

Get Your Oats Here!

Community support helps new enterprise transform local food supply chain. Holly Tiffen introduces the Oats Project, part of the ‘Grown in Totnes’ campaign. It’s one of the ways that Totnes entrepreneurs are taking advantage of the opportunities identified in the local Economic Blueprint.
http://www.reconomy.org/get-your-oats-here/

Let’s Focus on Local Prosperity, Rather Than UK Growth

Karen Leach and Sarah Longlands write that for Localise West Midlands, the question is more about when will we see a return to a local prosperity rather than simply an increase in aggregate UK growth?
http://www.reconomy.org/lets-focus-on-local-prosperity-rather-than-uk-growth/

TRANSITION FREE PRESS

Read Our App

You can now sign up for a digital subscription to the newspaper. As well as reading it online, digital subscribers can also download the App and read it on their iPhone, iPad and Android phone. 

Would you like to go to WOMAD?

One of our TFP5 partners, ecotricity, is offering two free tickets to the world music festival, WOMAD in July.
http://transitionfreepress.org/2014/06/05/digital-subscriptions-now-launched/

SOCIAL REPORTERS

For the last two and a half years, the Transition Social Reporters have been telling stories of our local initiatives, and of our attempts to shift our communities towards a low energy way of living. This month we’re back from a short break, and examining stories and why we need them.

Does This Story Have a Happy Ending?

Sara Ayech reflects on the plot twists, ups and downs of a real life story.
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/stories/sara-ayech/2014-06/does-story-have-happy-ending  

Tales from Wales

Setting out on another Transition Tales gathering tour, Steph Bradley visits three Transition initiatives which have all been going since 2008: Monmouth, Swansea and Haverfordwest.
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/stories/steph-bradley/2014-06/tales-wales


THINKING OUT LOUD

Inner Transition for Everyone?

Sophy Banks recently gave a webinar for Transition US which explored the ideas around Inner Transition.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cscXg7ZhbtM

The Community Resilience Challenge

Organized by Transition USA with other partner organisations over 10,000 actions were registered in May. The Community Resilience Challenge has four themes: Save Water, Grow Food, Conserve Energy, and Build Community. It is an opportunity to show communities what a more resilient future looks like, and start building it! Check out the support materials, map and inspiring video.
http://www.transitionus.org/crc

Vision 2030

To build a better future, we first need to imagine it, and that’s just what Transition Fidalgo & Friends in the USA set out to do one year ago. Over 60 people from kids to elders set their imaginations free to wander in a future of rising climate, energy and economic impacts.
http://www.transitionus.org/stories/transition-fidalgo-friends-vision-2030  

TRAINING

Launch online is beginning again on 8 October for 8 weeks. There is a Thrive in Barcelona, a Launch training in London this weekend with May East, and another in association with the NOW change your world conference http://nowchangeyourworld.com at the end of November. All details for these trainings and many others can be found here
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/events/network-training  

COMING UP

London Permaculture Festival - Sunday 6 July
http://www.londonpermaculturefestival.com/

Transition Roadshow - July 12-13, Lancaster
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/events/2014-07-12/north-west-transition-conference

One Day in Transition - 12 July, Bristol.
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/news/2014-06-04/your-chance-experience-one-day-transition

NEXT MONTH 

Our theme for June on the website will be 'Transition and Politics'. 

QUOTE OF THE MONTH
"It is always our choice which stories to listen to, and which to share, but if we are to grow as a species into mature responsible adults it is the ones that ignite our passion that will serve us best."
Steph Bradley

Follow Transition Network on Twitter
http://twitter.com/#!/transitiontowns

Be a Friend on Facebook
http://www.facebook.com/transitionnetwork

Film Reviews
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/films 

Transition Youtube Channel
https://www.youtube.com/transitiontowns

Resources — Editor's Picks
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/resources

Find previous editions of the newsletter here
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/tags/transition-network-newsletter

Read this newsletter online 
http://www.transitionnetwork.org/news/2014-06-04/june-2014-transition-network-newsletter

Subscribe to Transition newsletter:
http://tinyurl.com/transitionregister

This newsletter is published on the first Friday of each month. 
Next newsletter 4 July 2014

Newsletter Editor: Mike Grenville,
from Transition Forest Row for the Transition Network
Contact: mgrenville@gmail.com

Transition Bro Gwaun win Future Dragons Den at Hay Literary Festival!

Wed, 28/05/2014 - 15:45

Transition cafe volunteers pitched to the Future Dragons Den at Hay Festival this year for the prize of £10,000 to further their aims in stopping food waste in communities across the UK.  Transition Community cafe collects surplus food from local businesses, individuals and growers and turn it into affordable meals and preserves in their community cafe, meeting the environmental, economic, and social imperatives that are embedded in the Future Generations Bill about to be passed in Wales. 

Their most important mission is to reduce carbon emissions by stopping perfectly good food going to landfill and to change attitudes and more and more people are using the café, understanding that waste is bad both for the environment and their pockets.  They are strengthening the local economy and improving social capital by providing training, employment and work experience opportunities for local people particularly the young, the disabled and the long-term unemployed. 

Food in the cafe is deliberately affordable and available for everyone in the community.  Volunteers eat there or take food home and the demand for the food parcels administered to those in real poverty has increased threefold in 2014 and extends a reach into a part of the community with which it is often more difficult to engage. 

There are strong working relationships with local organizations including the RNLI, Sea Trust, Rotary, the local High School and Pembrokeshire Tourism which are also spreading the message out into the community. 

They offer an holistic, sustainable business model -  an example for others to follow:  With an income  last year of £10,000,  - not yet enough to fully fund  staffing needs  they place  equal importance on making full  use of community exchange, gifting, re-using and re-cycling and the all important volunteers, whose time was valued at over £32,000 last year.  

This prize will help them to future proof the project: surplus food supplies are increasing significantly – from last years average of 100 kg per week to a recent high of 190kg.  What do you do when you receive 30 dozen eggs, 300 ice creams and 5 boxes of cauliflowers all on the same day?

And they need to increase cafe footfall, put on more events, and find more distribution outlets within the community – or disappear under a mountain of surplus food!

By using the money to part fund more staff it will free up more volunteer time to develop the new schemes and systems and reach a wider audience, publicise the projects and generate more custom: part of this will involve by community mapping, needed to identify demand and increase collaborative working; and we need to update IT interaction and make by use of tourism APPS such as Pembrokeshire in your Pocket.

Perhaps the most important aspect of this prize win will be the development of a simple template for setting up and running similar projects in other communities that will enable others to replicate what they do.

OVESCO win 2014 Ashden Award for Community Energy

Fri, 23/05/2014 - 07:40

At last night's prestigious Ashden Awards in London, the Ouse Valley Energy Services Company (OVESCO for short) won the Community Energy Award in recognition of the group's work.  OVESCO, which grew out of Transition Town Lewes, has become a real force for community energy, starting a number of projects including raising £310,000 from local people to put 554 solar panels on Harvey's Brewery, and they are now mentoring 10 other local communities in how to do the same.  

On winning the award, OVESCO's Chris Rowland said: 

We are very proud to receive this Ashden Award on behalf of solar powered beer at Harveys brewery, our directors, investors and Transition Town Lewes. 

We are now mentoring twelve new groups in Sussex, from Chichester to Rye, to help them replicate what we have achieved, and we are working on scaling up our own projects from kWs to MWs. 


In my hand, I have a Lewes Pound and printed on this local currency are the words: ‘We have it in our POWER to build the world anew’, Thomas Paine one time Lewes resident. 

We want to see a POWER generating revolution in the UK. We believe that community owned energy companies are an essential part in making that happen. 

At OVESCO we hope that our success will inspire others to take action in their communities, so that we can build the world anew and community owned renewable energy becomes the new normal.   

We believe this is totally possible.  Thank you.

Here is a short film the Ashden Awards made about OVESCO to show on the night: 

Our huge congratulations to everyone involved. 

New Transition Free Press hits the streets

Wed, 14/05/2014 - 07:21

The latest edition of Transition Free Press came out this week, Issue No.5, the Spring/Summer edition, and it is a marvellous creation.  For this new edition, TFP has broadened its remit from just news and initiatives from the Transition movement to Transition in the wider sense, and it's a richer, and more inspiring publication as a result.  You can read all about it here, and find out how to get a copy, buy a bundle for your Transition group, or better still, become a subscriber. They write that "Transition Free Press is designed as a  paper you can hold in your hands", which is part of its power, but you can also read it online here.   

Here is editor Charlotte Du Cann's opening editorial which beautifully sets the tone for what you will find in TFP's colourful and rich pages: 

"Welcome to our new Spring edition! We’re stepping out into our second year of Transition Free Press, after a successful pilot during 2013, and hope you will keep following our tracks as we cross into uncharted territory.

“We’ve gone as far as data and facts can take us, now something else has to kick in,” food consultant Geoff Tansey told a group of artists who had gathered to collaborate on a book about Transition and the arts called Playing for Time.

Transition Free Press is a paper reporting on that ‘something else’: the people who are shifting from a growth-at-all-costs culture to one that will get us and the Earth we love back on track.

Like all great artists, this new culture works as an intervention into ‘normal’ life, reminding everyone how earthly life is unpredictable, funny, risky, inventive, beautiful; how regeneration can happen on every street corner and that the everyday world is rich.

Facts about climate change and peak resources are necessary to know, that’s clear – but what makes for a sea-change is when you sense another kind of world is out there. That’s a world where you find yourself walking across the street in a swimsuit, sowing beans under the Fenland sky, taking part in a play about apples on Tooting Bec Common. Taking a long walk across the nation with strangers who feel like kin.

Most of all it’s about noticing what kind of life we wish for, given a chance to work it out: getting a deep sense of time, that is not the time of the clock; a change of mood, that is not anxious or mean; paying attention to the seasons like foragers and poets. So though the data may predict the same outcomes, we realise our feeling about things have radically changed.

At the heart of this May-July issue is a story about The Restart Project that inspires people to pick up their broken technology and learn how to mend it themselves – with a little help from others in the neighbourhood. It demonstrates the magic of experiential life. How things can turn around just by our getting engaged. Like all great Transition projects it says: we can take this into our own hands: we can revitalise democracy, sort out the waste crisis, start our own currency, run our own paper! Right here, right now.

Because this not an individual shift. The Earth has come about via extraordinary and unlikely collaborations between beings you might not ordinarily see. It’s as much about how we work together in small and often invisible ways as it is about the direction we take. For 2014 our aim is to keep celebrating those collaborations and give you glimpses into that possible world. In these spring and summer pages we’re welcoming initiatives and campaigns that run alongside the Transition movement and a brand new editorial team. Come on in! The water is lovely.

Charlotte, Alexis, Mark, Amy, Chris, Michaela, Gavin, Marion, Mike, Eva and Tess

Free trees for your Transition initiative to mark the anniversary of World War One

Mon, 12/05/2014 - 07:12

This August marks the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of the First World War. The Woodland Trust is honouring all those who took part in the war effort by planting millions of trees that will stand as a tribute for centuries to come. Will you stand with us by planting a free tree pack in your community?

We have over 4000 packs to give away in autumn and they come in three sizes – 30 saplings, 105 saplings and 420 saplings in various themes (hedge, copse, wildlife, wild harvest, year-round colour, working wood, wild wood and wetland). You can apply for more than one pack and theme with 420 saplings being the maximum quantity. You can find out more about them and apply online here, but I’d advise groups to apply sooner rather than later.

Watch our short video clip to find out why thousands of community groups and schools across the UK have been digging in to plant free tree packs in their neighbourhood.

Please feel free to forward to share this information with any group or school that might be interested, add it to your website or include it in your newsletter – many thanks to those who have already helped to spread the word!

Deadline for applications is 4 September but we may need to close early if oversubscribed.

If you have any questions at all please do get in touch.

Kind regards

Beverley Gormley

Community Tree Packs, Woodland Trust.