Transition Hull – What did we do in 2013?
We organised 5 talks and 3 film showings open to the general public, with the aim of raising awareness of various environmental challenges, the need to live more sustainably and the ways in which communities can take control of their environment.
Kate MacDonald of Hull and East Riding TimeBank gave a talk to us in February about the ideas behind timebanking and how the ‘give and hour, get an hour’ scheme works to utilise skills for the benefit of the community.
In March we had a meeting on Bees, swapping info on bees and beekeeping, and the following week showed the film ‘The Vanishing of the Bees’, a detailed look at the factors affecting the decline of bee populations.
We showed the film ‘Seeds of Freedom’ , charting the pressures on seed and food sovereignty from agribusiness, and followed this up with a Seed Swap at the AGM later in April. We also organised a kids arts and crafts ‘Scrappy Do’ workshop in the Easter holiday.
The film ‘Land Rush’, about buying up arable land in poor countries, was shown in May. Later in the month we had a meeting at which LUSH gave a presentation on their fresh handmade cosmetics. We also held the first of two Barn Dances in May, the second one following in November.
Jan Boyd of Green Prosperity came along in June to tell us about this East Hull based project working with residents to save money on energy bills, insulate homes, reduce waste, grow vegetables and develop a community allotment, using substantial lottery funding.
To increase attendance at talks we teamed up with Hull Friends of the Earth for our autumn talks to deliver topics of interest to both groups. Short reports of all 3 talks are on the Transition website.
Susie Greaves gave a talk entitled ‘From Chernobyl to Fukushima’ in September about the impact of nuclear accidents. She continues to research in this area and to disseminate the information to a mailing list.
In October Alan Hunton and his colleague Tony Burgoyne, volunteers with the Woodland Trust, gave a talk on the work of the Woodland Trust to promote preservation and enjoyment of woodland. This was well received and attracted new members to the Trust. Talking of trees, we were delighted to note the William Jackson initiative to start planting a large number of trees locally, and we continue to support and promote Pickering Road Community Orchard and its activities.
Our coordinator Lausanne Tranter , having obtained a Certificate in Permaculture Design, gave a talk in November about Permaculture as a way of achieving sustainability following nature’s patterns. Earlier in the year we had worked with the Workers’ Educational Association to offer a 2 day permaculture course in Hull in March, but this unfortunately had to be cancelled. The course will take place in March 2014. Meanwhile, Lausanne has been appointed Permaculture Ambassador for the Hull area from 2014.
To promote Transition Hull and sign up new members we had a presence at Ella Street Festival, YWT Pearson Park Wildlife Garden during Avenues Open Gardens, in the ‘Seeds for the Desert’ Secret Shed at the Freedom Festival, at Arthur’s Organics Open Day at Walton Street , at the North Bank Forum AGM and at the Hull Green Fair.
Constable Street Field Developments
Over the two previous years Transition Hull created a small vegetable patch and a wildflower area on parts of Constable Street Field. Hull City Council signalled willingness to allow the whole field to be taken over by the community and during 2013 a number of meetings were held with a view to setting up a community organisation, Friends of Constable Street Field. After litter pick, a clean-up day and a Residents’ Barbeque on the field, Friends of Constable Street Field adopted a constitution in July 2013.
Transition Hull continues its involvement by working with FCSF and in August 2013 we ran a joint Family Fun Day on the field, with refreshments, raffle and activities for children including races, games, and glass etching. FCSF continued with planning meetings during the autumn, and there will be a planting of trees in Feb 2014 and a permaculture design for the growing area.
New local initiatives
2013 saw the development of several new local initiatives.
- Greenshare Network: involves 60 members (organisations, individuals and businesses) in Hull and the East Riding of Yorkshire with an interest in environmental issues including food, re-use and recycling, wildlife, climate change, carbon reduction, green spaces, community growing projects, sustainable transport and environmental education. Transition Hull representative – Lausanne Tranter
- Food4Hull: a network to promote existing food projects in the area, bring people together and explore food-related issues such as food security, food poverty, diet and health, food miles and food waste. Transition Hull representative – Jenny Parsons
- Hull and East Yorkshire Frack Off: a recently set-up campaign to highlight the environmental dangers of fracking, and which involves a number of individuals and organisations. Transition Hull involvement – Jenny Parsons
- Hull City Farm The UK Federation of City Farms and Community Gardens is working with Hull City Council to explore the potential for a city centre farm as part of Hull’s City Plan. Following a consultation meeting, a feasibility study has been published. Transition Hull involvement – Lausanne Tranter
Transition Hull received a grant of £250 from the Hessle Rd Pram Race and Carnival Trust in February 2013. We submitted a bid to the Cooperative Community Fund in December 2013 and we are awaiting the outcome.