July 2009 Newsletter

Transition Network Newsletter; July 2009

24th July 2009


  • The Ark ‘not stupid’ Family Camp
  • South East Transition Camp


  • Energy Resilience Assessment practitioner training

  • Transition Movement Survey Results

  • Transition Conference 3.0

  • Oh lord, Won’t You Buy Me, A Composting Loo


  • Skills, Resilience and Awareness?

  • Can Totnes and District Feed Itself?

  • Totnes Energy Descent Action Plan Update

  • A Transition Take on the UK Low Carbon Transition Plan

  • The (un)Happy Planet Index 2.0

  • Tourism in Transition?

  • Waiting For An Allotment


  • Lewes Pound ReLaunched

  • Lewes Open Eco Houses Weekend

  • Tooting Catches Carnival Cash

  • Food For Thought At The Stroud Communiversity


  • Energy descent and transition in Mexico


  • Film: Home

  • Film: The Real Dirt on Farmer John

  • DVD: The Powerdown Show

  • Funding Central

  • Quote of the month

Not waving but drowning…..

A thousand apologies for the big gap in the newsletter flow. I have a long list of excuses which I can share with you if you are interested? …. no I thought not. Anyway, the good news is that this is a bumper issue with lots for you to read and be inspired by over the summer.

Next week I will be at the Big Green Gathering along with a team from around the UK so if you are coming do come by – we have a full programme of events, talks (including Rob Hopkins), films, books and general chat and on Friday at 3pm join us for The Big Green Transition Meet Up & Tea Party. We have a rebuilt barn as our stand in the Permaculture area. If you have materials on what you are up to we can display them. There are still tickets available…



Newsletter Editor


The Ark ‘not stupid’ Family Camp

The lovely Braziers Park near Oxford has teamed up with Transition Town Maidenhead to run a family camp on the weekend of the 14th – 16th August.

South East Transition Camp
25 – 27th September
The second Transition camp will take place on Wapsbourne Farm in Sussex at the end of the Bluebell Railway. Come for a weekend of camp fires, sauna, stars, workshops, kids activites, music and delicious food and of course much more. Register here: http://transitiongathering.ning.com


Energy Resilience Assessment practitioner training

Are you interested in helping to bring transition thinking to your local businesses, public sector and voluntary organisations in Scotland, Ireland, Wales or England? Transition Training & Consulting (part of the Transition Network, and incorporating what was previously known as Transition Training) are starting to offer transition-related products and services for businesses and other organisations. These will be delivered by the TT&C Practitioner Network, a community of trainers and consultants who work in a professional, commercial capacity. The first offering aimed specifically at businesses and other organisations is the Energy Resilience Assessment (ERA). Applications are invited for the first 2 day ERA Practitioner Training Course which will be held on 7-8th October, 2009 in Devon. The deadline for applications is 5pm on 7th August, 2009.More details and how to apply here

Transition Movement Survey Results

Despite the phenomenal growth and the wave of positive publicity the Transition movement has received, there has to date been very little empirical research into the development and character of these initiatives, or the impacts they have achieved and the barriers to be overcome. Research just published by the University of East Anglia provides a snapshot of the movement in the UK.

Transition Conference 3.0

With accelerating growth and it’s ideas spreading so fast, it’s easy to forget that the Transition Movement is only a bit over three years old. The third annual Transition conference held for the first time in London had around twice as many participants as last year over three days at the Battersea Arts Centre.

Oh lord, Won’t You Buy Me, A Composting Loo

If a conference doesn’t spark the creative juices to flow then what is it for you might ask? Well if that is the test then the 2009 Transition conference passed by inspiring this wonderful version of a wonderful song sung by everyone to round off the event.


Skills, Resilience and Awareness?

As part of the Totnes EDAP process, Rob Hopkins has completed a survey of a sample of households in Totnes and Dartington. Questions included attitudes to energy issues, food, transport and how many people are aware of Transition and its relevance to them. Rob relates his initial conclusions:

Can Totnes and District Feed Itself?

After many months of work a major piece of groundbreaking research has been published by Transition Totnes called Can Totnes and District Feed Itself: exploring the practicalities of food relocalisation.

Totnes Energy Descent Action Plan Update

After a lengthy process of meetings and public workshops the Transition Totnes (TTT) draft Energy Descent Action Plan (EDAP) is now available on line for open consultation till the end of August.

A Transition Take on the UK Low Carbon Transition Plan

Rob Hopkins casts a critical eye over UK government transition plan:
After many months of Ed Milliband putting himself out there are a Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change that actually gets climate change, finally his big Plan, the UK Low Carbon Transition Plan was unveiled on Wednesday, in a speech in the House of Commons that name checked Transition Towns and which is the boldest national vision for a low carbon society yet seen. Many others have since pitched in with their thoughts, I thought it might be useful here to offer an analysis from a Transition perspective.

The (un)Happy Planet Index 2.0

Believing that good lives don’t have to cost the Earth, The new economics foundation (nef) has updated its Happy Planet Index 2.0. It is a global ranking of the ecological efficiency with which the world’s nations deliver long and happy lives for the people who live there.

Tourism in Transition?

What is tourism’s contribution to sustainable communities. A large and vital industry in so many towns and villages in the UK, tourism’s role within the wider sustainability agenda should not be overlooked. Anna Waddilove reports on a recently completed piece of research examining the potential role of tourism within sustainable communities, with a particular focus on the Transition model.

Waiting For An Allotment

As interest in digging for resilience grows, waiting lists for an allotment has been increasing all over the country. A survey by Transition West Kirby has found that for every 100 council-managed allotment plots in England there are now 49 people on waiting lists.


Lewes Pound ReLaunched

Following the success of the first issue of The Lewes Pound, launched in September 2008, Transition Lewes have relaunched it with higher denomination notes making it easier to use. Adrienne Campbell reports on the launch Do:

Lewes Open Eco Houses Weekend

Transition Lewes Energy Group’s Eco Open House Event in June hosted the BBC Politics show for the South East at local architect Duncan Baker Brown’s house – looking at two very different kinds of houses that need to be put in order!

Tooting Catches Carnival Cash

Transition Tooting in south London together with Project Phakama, a London based youth arts organization working with refugees from around the world, have been awarded a grant towards the cost of a year long twelve step Transition process that will culminate in a large scale carnival on the 2010 summer solstice.

Food For Thought At The Stroud Communiversity

Stroud’s second Communiversity took place over three days of wonderful and sometimes challenging weather. Max Comfort gives us some of the insights into topics covered such as Community Supported Agriculture, Street Allotments and food foraging.


Energy descent and transition in Mexico

Holger Hieronimi reports on rising awareness in Mexico: “In Mexico nothing happens, until it happens.” This is an old proverb here, and it can also easily apply to the current situation. Everything feels tranquilo and smooth, as if it is nothing out of the ordinary. However, as history shows us, once something begins in Mexico, it generally develops rapidly, and can end up being intensely spectacular.


Film Review: Home

The popular coffee table book ‘The Earth from Above’ by French photographer Yann Arthus-Bertrand has been made into a stunning film to highlight the damage man is doing to the planet. Called HOME, the film shows images of cities, rain forests, deserts and oceans from above to highlight the damage climate change, development and over exploitation is doing to the planet. With no talking heads. the narrative quickly draws the viewer in to see the story of life on the planet, our role in shaping it and calls to us to work together to write the script of what happens next.It’s too late to be a pessimist.Home

Film Review: The Real Dirt on Farmer John

Farmer John is a charming and moving film that charts the story of one farm in Illinois from the 1950s that illustrates well the challenges that have faced all family farms in the decades since the war.

The Powerdown Show DVD

The Cultivate Centre in Dublin have just produced a fabulous resource that all Transition groups will find invaluable, the Powerdown Show. The series of ten 20 minute programmes explores many aspects of the Transition movement in a humorous, accessible and inspiring way. Those interviewed in the series include George Monbiot, Paul Allen, Richard Douthwaite, Megan Quinn, Daniel Lerch, Duncan Stewart, Rob Hopkins and many more.

Quote Of The Month

“What breaks your heart, what you really love, is the thing that will sustain you. That’s what you ought to be doing.” Andrew Harvey www.hopedance.org

This Newsletter Edited by Mike Grenville

Contact: transitionnetworknews@googlemail.com

+44 (0) 1342 825169

Please share this Newsletter ‘subscribe’ link with your friends:


Newletter Editor: Mike Grenville

Contact: transitionnetworknews@googlemail.com



  1. I’m very much in favour of sustainable living and developing ways of forging and maintaining strong bonds within our communities. I believe this is paramount in realizing this goal. Working together for the common good will hopefuly engender an atmosphere of co-operativeness and cohesiveness. I am not an idealist but notice that people do tend to copy each other so setting an example can draw many in. It would be nice if our collective efforts can go at least some way towards producing more mindful, inclusive and less self-orientated ways of living so that all within the community may benefit.

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