July Newsletter

July Newsletter


With this current heatwave, the plants at our food-growing sites are bolting, going to seed rather than growing slowly to give us the big leaves, roots and fruits that are good to eat. We need help keeping them watered so that they slow down. You can help us by dropping by whenever you like – maybe on your way home from work once a week – and watering the beds. The sites most in need of watering are at the Premier Inn car park (Ornan Road) and the Swiss Cottage Open Space. At the Premier Inn, there is a watering can stashed at the back of the site and the hotel has an external tap just past the entrance. At Swiss Cottage, you’ll have to bring your own watering can, but the staff at the swimming pool can help you fill it. Email food@transitionbelsize.org.uk for more info. Permaculture, in which agricultural systems are modeled on natural ecosystems, offers one of the best ways to adapt to these climate extremes which are becoming increasingly frequent. You can read more about permaculture on the Permaculture Association website, and last week a team from Transition Belsize ran a stand at the London Permaculture Festival. You can read more about Anna’s experiences here. Check out our website for updates on events and projects and news. Don’t forget to register on the site, and also “like” our Facebook page, so you can read and share content, like this great article from The Guardian: “Local, self-sufficient, optimistic: are Transition Towns the way forward?” 


Transition Belsize Events

Restart Party

Wednesday 31st July – 6-9pm Belsize Community Library, Antrim Road We are happy to announce the return of The Restart Project to Belsize Community Library in NW3, home of some excellent events last year! This time around we will be also helping the library restart some of their malfunctioning equipment, including two PCs, a CD player and a telephone. This is going to be a great opportunity for new Restarters to come meet us, get involved and start opening up tech together. Bring tools if you have them, devices in need of support and don't forget some snacks, drinks and your smile. After the event, we'll be visiting a local pub. More info here

Transition Tipple

Wednesday 7th August – 8-11pm Sir Richard Steele pub, Haverstock Hill Join us for a drink and an informal chat on the first Wednesday of every month. Learn about Transition, find out how to get involved and meet some new people. This is great opportunity to meet like-minded people and set up projects that can benefit the local community. More info here.

Belsize Green Fair

Saturday 28th September – 10am-4pm We have now chosen a date for this year's Belsize Green Fair, which takes place outside Budgens on Haverstock Hill. We use this event to engage with the local community and work our ways in which we can tackle issues associated with the challenges of peak oil, climate change and the fragility of the financial system. If you’d like to volunteer to help with organization and/or set-up on the day, please email info@transitionbelsize.org.uk

Other Local Transition Events

20 Years of GM – Still Threatening Us All?

Tuesday 23rd July – 7-10pm Flaxon Ptootch, 237 Kentish Town Road, NW5 Join Transition Kentish Town for a talk, discussion – and cocktails! – with Peter Melchett, Policy Director of the Soil Association. Peter is a local resident and veteran of the Greenpeace global campaign against GM crops in 1997. He was arrested for removing GM maize in 1999, and found not guilty in the subsequent court case. Suggested donation £5. More info here

Other Events

Fossil Hunting in Essex

Saturday 20th July Come and search for fossil sharks' teeth, shells and "pyritised" wood at Walton-on-the-Naze. Hammers and chisels are not needed, or allowed on this SSSI site, you simply pick them up off the floor. Wear outdoor clothing and boots - ground can be soft. A newspaper cut into quarters to wrap your fossils in and a plastic bag to keep them safe are all you need. Meet at Liverpool St Station platform for 10.18 (towards Clacton-on-Sea) train. If you plan to join, let Dave Lawrence know in advance: dave.lawrence@dsl.pipex.com.

Camden New Town Community Festival

Sunday 21st July – 12-6pm Camden Square Gardens, NW1 Entertainment for all ages, from a diverse cultures! Green corner, healthy living tent, live music, dance performance, children's activities, face painting, archery, local history, workshops, food & refreshments, arts & crafts.

God Save the Green

Tuesday 23rd July – 6.30pm Italian Cultural Institute, 39 Belgrave Square, SW1X London premiere of this documentary film which explores several urban guerrilla gardens around the world: the last garden in one of the most crowded peripheries of Casablanca (Morocco); the hydroponic cultivation in Teresina (Brazil); community gardens in Berlin;  growing vegetables inside bags in one of Nairobi's slums (Kenya); hanging gardens in Berlin, Turin and Bologna; guerrilla gardening in Berlin. God Save The Green tells the stories of people who are regaining a sense of community through gardening while changing their lives and the places they live in. More info here.

Bushcraft Summer Camp

Wednesday 24th July – 10am-3pm Fitzjohn’s Primary School, Fitzjohn’s Avenue Calling all creative kids… Year 2 and above. An action-packed, educational and fun eco club. Wood carving, felting, bivvy building, willow whittling, perfume and potion brewing, bow and arrow hazel creations, hedgerow jam making, water and energy experiments, bug hotels, wildlife watching, campfire cooking, marshmallow toasting, pizza making, bushcraft skillage, wild food foraging, eco art, unusual veg sowing… Cost: £30 (concessions available). Contact Debbie at 07910124359 or debbiebourne21@gmail.com.

Daunt Books Walking Book Club

Sunday 4th August – 11.30 am Join other book-lovers for a walk on Hampstead Heath to discuss Frumer Godden’s coming-of-age classic Breakfast with the Nikolides. First published in 1942, Godden’s haunting novel of lost innocence is an enduring classic. Meet at Daunt Books, South End Road. Children, friends and dogs are all very welcome! 

News and Petitions

Belsize Library Now Opening Saturdays

Belsize Community Library, Antrim Road Thanks to the generosity and support of the Friends of Belsize Community Library, the library is now able to open the lending service on Saturdays.  The library will be open as of Saturday 27th July from 11.30am to 6pm.  If you’re interested in helping to run the lending service by volunteering on Saturdays, contact belsizelibrary@thewinch.org. More exciting developments have been taking place at the library, which now has yoga classes, a pop-up coffee shop and a coworking space. Keep up to date with the latest news on their Facebook page.

Entropia: Life Beyond Industrial Civilisation

Samuel Alexander from Transition Coburg, in Australia has written a book, called Entropia: Life Beyond Industrial Civilisation, in which he tries to envision a society where the Transition Movement has succeeded – a world where people are living simply and cooperatively, building resilience, and running their local economies on renewable energy. Richard Heinberg, author of The End of Growth, has praised the book as follows: ‘Overflowing with insight and beautifully written, Entropia unveils the radical implications of moving beyond fossil fuels. This book may come to define what sustainability really means.’ Find out more here.

Belsize Fire Station – Sign the Petition

Belsize Park Fire Station has been earmarked for closure to save a few pennies on Council Tax. The fire station has been an integral part of the local community for almost 100 years. It is the second busiest pump ladder in the London fire brigade and it serves an extensive mix of properties and businesses, from high-rise tower blocks to Stables Market in Camden. If closed, this change would leave Camden and neighbouring residents imensley vulnerable. Please sign the petition, and ask your friends and neighbours to do the same.

Vote to Make Ecocide a Crime

The destruction of our environment is a crime. A crime for which those responsible should be held accountable. This crime has a name: Ecocide. The European Citizens' Initiative (ECI) is a direct democratic tool enabling EU citizens to propose EU legislation. Signing up to an ECI has the same power as voting. The campaign need your vote for the EU to consider our proposal. Please take one minute to give your support! www.endecocide.eu