Friday, 3 May 2013

Transition Town Totness

Transition Town Totnes wins green award - video

A community scheme led by Transition Town Totnes that encourages groups of neighbours in the town to embark on a low-carbon path together, saving money and carbon, has been named one of the winners of the 2011 Ashden Awards. These awards showcase practical solutions to combat climate change, rewarding outstanding and innovative low-carbon schemes in the UK and developing countries

Totnes: Britain's town of the future

Totnes in Devon might be the most forward-thinking eco settlement in the world. As fossil-fuel reserves dwindle and the economy contracts, will resident-led Transition Towns become the way that we all live?

Lucy Siegle The Observer,  6 February 2011

Roofs of Totnes, Devon, Great Britain, Europe
Totnes: “capital of new-age chic”. Photograph: Alamy

The Transition initiative, which attempts to provide a blueprint for communities to enable them to make the change from a life dependent on oil to one that functions without, seems to me one of the most viable and sensible plans we have for modern society. I write this on the day it is announced that the UK economy shrank by a "shock" 0.5% in the last quarter of 2010. Everyone is blaming the weather. Hopkins isn't. Neither is he particularly shocked.
"I think the unravelling of the debt bubble has only really started," he says. "Up until 2008 it was all about a growing economy and cheap energy. Then we had expensive energy plus economic growth, then we had cheap energy and economic contraction. So the next phase is volatile energy and economic contraction. It's not rocket science."
The Transition movement works on the basis that if we wait for government to act on issues such as climate change we'll be waiting until hell freezes over; and if we only act as individuals, that's too little. So it's working together as communities where the real change will happen. In offices on that steep high street, squeezed between the pet shop and a travel agency, Transition Town Totnes was formed, swiftly followed by the Transition Network, to support the growth of the movement outside Totnes.
There are now more than 350 Transition movements, 200 of them in the UK. Last month the first Australian region, Sunshine Coast, became an official Transition Town. Hundreds more communities are mulling over the idea of embracing Transition (they are known as mullers). While there has been some debate among greens as to whether Transitioners are right to put so much emphasis on peak oil, and whether climate change should really be the main driver for change, it is clear that the strategy laid out in the latest Energy Descent Action Plan is one that will protect communities in the event of both oil shocks and climate change (and possibly economic shocks, too). It certainly beats stockpiling tinned food and buying a firearm.
"We did have a German visitor who was very disappointed," says Brangwyn, "because there
were still cars in the town and there were no goats on the roof."

Transition Town Totnes

Transition Town Totnes (TTT) is a dynamic, community-led charity that is strengthening the local economy, reducing the cost of  living and preparing for a future with less oil and a changing climate.
Transition Town Totnes - Bringing people together to build a future beyond oil

Map of independent cafes, restaurants and pubs launched
Published on: April 16th, 2013 

Totnes Map

If we all moved 10% of our household spend on food from the supermarket to local shops we could put an extra 2 million pounds into the local Totnes economy.
Transition Town Totnes' Food-Link project has been working with all of the independent cafes, restaurants and pubs in the town to produce a comprehensive map that illustrates the diversity of food and drink establishments within the town and its immediate vicinity.   All of the establishments were invited to be included and participating outlets have contributed towards the printing costs of the map. The map promotes 23 cafes and 21 restaurants and pubs.
The map aims to encourage both visitors and locals to support these independent businesses.  Supporting our local food outlets is one of the most proactive ways of supporting our local economy.  The majority of the featured venues source at least some of their ingredients from local farmers and producers and all of them use the services of other local businesses; such as signwriters, mechanics, IT support, printers, cleaners and electricians.
By using each other's services local businesses keep substantially more money circulating locally, in contrast to the money that rapidly leaves our town when spent in large national and multinational corporations.  Through spending more of our money in local businesses we can all actively contribute to the resilience of our local economy; one based on trust, mutual benefit and friendship.
This free map was officially launched at the Local Entrepreneurs Forum on the 28thApril 2013 and will be available at the Totnes Information Centre, in all of the participating cafes, restaurants and pubs as well as other tourist outlets such as the B&Bs and down at Steamer Quay. It can also be found electronically
 here. And can be downloaded here - front and back.


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