Sunday, February 21, 2010

Green Party Conference

Just back from conference.  A buisiness like conference this year with everyone's mind on the election.  The highlight for me was the panel chaired by Caroline Lucas about Equalities with Kate Pickett - author of 'The Spirite Level' (check it out) and the amazing Johann Hari who writes in the Independant - had me in tears and in tears of laughter as well; read him at  he is so on the nail with what he says!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Green Wood Working Course

Green Wood Working Course

We are planning a course to take place in our 8 acre ancient woodland here in Tendring (Essex) working with green wood with pole lathe, cleaving, bodging etc.  The tutor would be an experienced wood Wright & course leader with assistants and the course would be limited to 5 trainees.  Cost would be about £85 including lunch and drinks.  Let me know if you are interested (probably later in April). 
We have installed a gate now at the wood.  The gate is a weathered old gate which we were lucky enough to be offered to fix and use (so it doesnt look out of place!) We will trade honey and egs for it.
I'm off to the Green Party Conference tomorow for 4 days look out on the news for reports (we hope)

Saturday, February 13, 2010

On 'Any Questions' (well almost!!)

On Thursday I went to Harwich Sixth Form College to be an their 'Any Questions' panel with the sitting MP (Douglas Carswell) and hopefuls from the other main parties.  I must tell you I was very nervous but prepared with large flash cards and swotting.   It actually went off really well (at least I think so!) The questions were very sensible -
Why cant I get a job at 16 when they say they would employ me at 18?
Why must I pay adult fare on public transport when I am not allowed to vote etc till 18?
& etc
Gave me a chance to sound off about - fund public transport not more roads, proportional representation and more training and apprenticeships to meet the skills  needed to 'green' the economy.  I often cross swards with Douglas Carswell over hid denial of climate change but the subject didn't come up this time so mostly peace and light with a surprising level of agreement amongst the candidates over the kinds of questions that were asked.
I also went to the Anglia Uni recently to talk about EcoDIY and the roots of self reliance.  Not a big audience there but interesting never the less.  Still what came out of that was a desire to write about the roots (in the 60s and 70s ) of the self sufficiency movement and how it links to the Arts and crafts movement and The craft ethic of people like Bernard Leach and Hamada.  Unfortunately writing seems to get pushed to the bottom of the pile of the 'to do' lists!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Glebe Wood

We are starting to enjoy the wood we have just acquired. One of its strikeing features is a massive oak blasted recently by lightning! Its branches have been thrown twenty to thirty meters by the blast. Must have sounded like a bomb going off - very dangerous to be near when it happened (I wont be sheltering under any trees in the future I can tell you) Also some pics of the garden under the snow for contrast with the summer pictures

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Loads of Money! (govenment renewable energy payments)

Yes the government has announced the details of the domestic and business payments they are giving for the installation and running of things like solar panels, wind turbines biomass stoves and lots more,
Details here

More analysis and comment later when I have time but on the face of it you will make more money by installing these technologies than you will earn by having your savings in the bank.