A Guest Blog from Dave McCormick, Creative SenseMaking…
With a newly elected council and a Labour manifesto commitment to put sustainability at the heart of everything the council does, the Eco Show and Tell community event held on 22 May in Finchley Central was a great opportunity to see what a variety of local people are already doing about sustainability in Barnet.
In a small and friendly space, people could hear about encouraging cycling and walking to get fit and reduce car usage, educating children about nature, our new Tiny Forest, helping bees flourish, tasting vegan cakes, growing your own food, buying locally produced honey and things made out of rubbish, improving recycling and waste collection, indoor composting of food waste and why the proposed new Edmonton incinerator is bad for people and the climate.
And this wonderful mix of things led to great conversations including:
“How do we encourage people to shop locally and not use their car?” “I went to our local high street and asked if they would give discounts for people who walked or cycled to the shop, and they happily agreed to do so”
“How do we increase recycling?” “We need to make it easy and ‘frictionless’ – have bins at the end of the streets for recycling, take empty crisp packets and other plastic wrapping to the supermarkets who will recycle it”. “Why don’t our street waste bins have separate sections for recycling – many other councils do”. “And others also have large skip like containers for paper waste and bottle banks”. “How can the council do more to increase composting and recycling in blocks of flats and what do they insist on in new developments?”. “Are there any bus lanes in Barnet?” “That’s a great question!”. “The more we can share ideas and work together the more impact we can have and the more we can help the council deliver a sustainable Barnet”.
And from a visiting Barnet councillor “what a great event – it is engaging and educating the local community. We should have more things like this”.
The good news is that two more Eco Show and Tell events are already planned at Clitterhouse Farm North Cricklewood on June 11th 11am-1pm (more details below), and at Mill Hill Broadway on July 3rd 2-4pm.
Eco Show and Tell is an initiative led by Shiri Atsmon of non-profit sustainable children’s publishing house Helpful Kids. The event was co-organised with Make:Good, the design agency commissioned by Barnet Council with reviving Finchley Central Town Centre.
Creative SenseMaking Ltd
helping people do the right thing well
picture credit: Councillors Conway, Cook and Schneiderman and organisers Shiri Atsmon and Stephanie Romig at the event