Making Change in How We Live, Where We Live, in Light of Climate Change (FOR TWELVE YEARS!)

Thursday, 28 November 2013

BATCA Heroes Award for Gatton School & Tooting Community Garden

The Gatton School Community Garden project won a team award at the BATCA Community Heroes event held this evening at Jasmin's nightclub in Tooting. Congratulations to nominees Chuck and Deputy Head Hoosen Randaree pictured above with Head Teacher Rifat Batool and their awards. 
Many thanks to everyone involved, especially the children!

Sunday, 24 November 2013

Late November: Six 'new beginnings'

Even though the year is moving into winter, there's six 'new beginnings' to share with you below.
We hope to see you at these events - all welcome to come along and maybe try something new..

1 On Tuesday 26th November we are starting to plan for the 2014 Tooting Foodival.
Do join us and suggest some new ideas, or become a new participant for next year.
We're meeting at The Selkirk, 60 Selkirk Rd, Tooting Broadway from 1900 to 2100 (details on Events Calendar opposite).

2 On Wednesday 27th November there is a SMArT Meet and Make workshop at Sprout in Moyser Road, Furzedown from 1830 to 2030. All welcome (details in the Events Calendar). The meeting will also start to look forward to the Christmas making and craft event on December 7th at Mushkil Aasaan - details to follow.

3 Also on Wednesday 27th November, along with the Furzedown Low Carbon Zone, we are co-hosting 'Community Responses to the Energy Crisis' at the Furzedown project from 1930. The meeting will help participants make sense of saving energy and reducing costs now, and we will start to explore developing a local renewable energy project.  Plus refreshments from Naked Loaf...please come along. See the complete flyer here

4 Naked Loaf made creative use of the bread flour we grew in the Tooting Community Garden this summer to make sourdough starter for dozens of delicious loaves at the Tooting Foodival in September. The new beginning for Naked Loaf is the exciting opening of their new organic bakery and deli at 70 Moyser Road, Furzedown, SW16 6SQ. They are finishing the decorating now and expecting to be fully open from Thursday 28th November, all day from 8:00 am. Best go and visit soon and try some of the great produce!

5 The 'Big Build' with Gatton School in the Community Garden is beginning to take shape, building on the children's enthusiasm and energy.
There'll be a celebration at the end of term to mark the rainwater catchment completion.

6 Not quite a sign of spring, but the broad beans planted a few weeks ago are beginning to show through - a very encouraging sight as the weather turns colder.
Do come and join us in the Community Garden every Sunday from 1100-1300.

For more info on any of these 'new beginnings', contact us on email at

Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Update 2: Gatton School Garden Sessions

This week's garden sessions with Gatton School saw two very different events.  60 Year 1 children went on a "Bear Hunt" set out by their teachers around the site, while a more regular group of 15 Year 6 children helped clear up autumn leaves, tidy up some beds for compost and continued with the Big Build rain water harvester project.  The eight upright posts for the Big Build structure have now been set in concrete, some of it mixed by the students.  Thanks to all this week's volunteers who helped out with these activities.
A bear is discovered
Concrete mixing and post setting

Monday, 18 November 2013

Zero Carbon for The Shadow Cabinet

TTT likes to mix the global with the local where possible and in the last week, working with the Centre for Alternative Technology (CAT), we have sent a copy of CAT's Zero Carbon Britain report, via our helpful local MP Sadiq Khan, to every member of the shadow cabinet.  The parcels were tied up with colourful Tooting ribbon that Lucy picked up at Reshma's saree shop, which closed last month after 39 years of trading at Tooting Bec.
The report draws on CAT's 40 years of experience to offer technically viable scenarios for a future with zero carbon while also creating employment, increasing wellbeing and having a positive impact on the economy.

We are grateful to CAT and Sadiq for enabling us to disseminate these important ideas to potential future policy makers.  Follow the links above to read more about CAT and the report.

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Update 1: the Big Build with Gatton School in the Community Garden

One of the outdoor learning projects we are carrying out with Gatton School's Year Six class is helping to build our combined rainwater catchment, shelter, suntrap, & garden bower in the Community Garden, between now and Christmas.
Every week we'll make progress, and share it here.
Last week we cleared the site and dug the post holes.
Yesterday the children raised the first upright roof support.
The children mixed cement and gravel to make concrete - and mixed it again and again in several piles.
Cement has a high carbon footprint: we are using as little as we can. Almost all the timber we need is recycled from materials found on site. We'll be buying new fixings, and balancing that with mixing the concrete by hand - and saving water in the future.

Saturday, 9 November 2013

New TTT email of news and activities Nov 6th 13

Our latest email has been sent out to subscribers - we hope it's an enjoyable read (yes there is a lot there!). If you don't receive it and would like to read a copy, please click here. 
Helena and Poppy: you wrote in and asked to be added to the list. I wrote back to you on 2 December, and now I have deleted your emails by mistake - sorry - could you write in again!
If you would like to be sent your very own in future, do email us on
For the diary: we've made a date correction: the SMArT Christmas making event is on 7th December, at Mushkil Aasaan - not the 11th. Details to follow, and all welcome!

Wednesday, 6 November 2013

Outdoor Learning with Gatton School in the Community Garden in Nov & Dec 2013

Gatton School, located near Tooting Broadway, have been coming to the Community Garden every week since March as part of their Outdoor Learning programme. At the moment we have Year One and Year Six staff and children taking part, alongside TTT volunteers.
Between now and the end of term in December, we are running two projects: the Big Build, and Bug Hotels (we seem to be in a construction frame of mind, good for these winter weeks).
The plan takes shape

Monday, 4 November 2013

Foodcycle Tooting

TTT Co-chair, Belinda Sosinowicz blogs her first experiences of the new Foodcycle venture starting this month in Tooting.

According to Foodcycle (2013) an estimated 400,000 tonnes of useable surplus food can be saved from UK supermarkets each year [1], or in other words, 400,000 tonnes of food is wasted by supermarkets that could otherwise be used.

To be doing something practical about this fits with our transition values which aim to tackle the big issues of climate change, peak oil, sustainability and scarce resources at a local level.  So recently I found myself being drawn into finding out how I could do more to address the issue of food wastage at my local level by joining Foodcycle.

Foodcycle is a UK charity that combines volunteers, surplus food and spare kitchen spaces to create tasty, nutritious meals for people at risk of food poverty and social isolation. They run 14 Hubs across the country: volunteer-powered community projects serving nutritious meals for people at risk. Working with community partners they provide communal meals in a warm and welcoming environment to older people, mental health service users, homeless people, low-income families, asylum seekers and refugees, and the long-term unemployed. Since May they have reclaimed over 74, 000kg of surplus food from food retailers.