About Us


We're part of a world-wide community movement in response to peak oil and climate change. This site gives you details of our up and coming events and meetings, as well as reports and related matters that are going on in Norwich and East Anglia.

NEWS AND RELATED EVENTS... Common Room - Low Carbon Cookbook - Magdalen-Augustine Celebration - Norwich FarmShare - Transition Free Press 4 - Visions for Change -On the Blog Harvest: Looking in the Archive 2009-2013 - Flight of the Butterflies - Where We Are Now

Friday, April 29, 2011

Job Vacancy at Norwich FarmShare‏

Norwich FarmShare, our brand new Community Supported Agriculture scheme based on 2 acres at Hewett School and 5 acres in a field near Postwick, is looking for a part-time grower to join us, producing chemical free veg for 100 members and the Hewett school kitchen every week.

The role will be a supporting one and involves working with the head grower and volunteers. Experience of field scale veg production, both outdoors and in protected cropping, is ideally preferred. Driver's licence essential.

The applicant will need to be flexible with their time during the week and throughout the seasons. Hours are negotiable but 3 to 4 days a week will be required from March until October dropping to 1 to 2 days a week in the winter months. £6.08 per hour (with a view to increasing
this over time).

Email Laura at lauracreen@gmail.com for more details and a full job description. Application deadline – May 6th. Interviews pencilled in for 11th of May to start mid-June or as soon as possible thereafter. for more info about our scheme see: http://norwichcommunityag.blogspot.com/

Photo: onions at Postwick by Elena Judd

Friday, April 1, 2011

Welcome to our April 2011 News!

Read all about it in the news and reports below from our Transition Norwich news bloggers. Events, Circles, growing and food projects, follow up Stoneleigh's talk in Norwich, spring scheming updates, second Magdalen Street Fair meeting, the latest on the blog and more . . . .

Spring Ahoy! from This Low Carbon Life; Molly greets the audience at Nicole Foss's talk at the United Reform Church; Norich FarmShare's tractor enters the field at Postwick All photos from This Low Carbon Life and Norwich FarmShare blogs

Time to join the Community Supported Agriculture Scheme - April 2

Our Community Supported Agriculture scheme (FarmShare) is now ready to sign up members for its vegetable share scheme.

We're offering two sizes of share: a smaller share which aims to provide enough vegetables for 1-2 people costs £37 per month, while a larger share (aimed more at families) costs £53.50 per month. In addition we're asking members to pay a "social membership fee" of £2 a month (towards a newsletter, social events etc).

If you don't want a veg share you can still join in the social part! If you signed up on our online survey all that time ago, we'll be contacting you with more details very soon. If you didn't, contact Tully at tully@transitionnorwich.org or phone 07717 471 396.

Also happening at FarmShare this month: Laura and her team have already started planting out vegetables, and will be planting many more. A workday last month put up the polytunnel and the composting loo. And this Saturday (April 2nd) we'll be having a picnic (12-2pm) and brief AGM on the field at Postwick - call Tully if you'd like to join us.

Second Magdalen Street Celebration - 7 April

Calling All Transitioners! The 2nd Annual Magdalen Street Celebration will be held Saturday, 1 October 2011. This is a Transition NR3 event that brings together artists, musicians, neighbors and fans to celebrate the creativity, diversity and sustainability of Magdalen Street.

Come join the Envisioning Group to help plan activities for 2011: Thurs 7 April at 7 pm at Take Five in Tombland For more information: Stefi 07964 494836

Permaculture Norwich - 10 April

On Saturday 19 March we had our first excursion! The warm sun shone on our faces as we had a social and educational day of tours of permaculture demonstration sites: The Apricot Centre, Manningtree and The Peoples Community Garden in Ipswich. Thank you Marina and Susannah for hosting our group of twelve. See Kerry’s post on the Transition Norwich This Low Carbon Life blog for pics!

Sunday 10th April-10.30 UEA permaculture allotment and forest garden workday Activities could include: - maintaining beds at allotment -sewing seeds in polytunnel - maintaining forest garden site -bonfire Bring work gloves and food to share for lunch. See calendar for times/directions/details. New faces welcome! Contact Tierney for more info on the Norwich Permaculture group (Tierneywoods@yahoo.co.uk).

Apricot Centre Tour, Time to share in the sun at PCG, Leaving the place better than we had found it-helping plant up salad seedlings for PCG

Grapes Hill Community Garden Update - 25 April

Since my last update in early March, we've made good progress at Grapes Hill Community Garden.

We've finished moving our forty tonnes of extra soil, sown our wildflower meadow and cornfield annuals and, most recently, laid turf and planted woodland wildflowers. The first radishes are emerging in one of the deep beds and the daffodils are in flower.

If you'd like to get involved, we will have further work days on Sundays 3rd and 17th April, Easter Monday 25th April and Sunday 15th May 2011. Tasks start at 11am and all are welcome. Bring lunch and, if you have them, gardening gloves.

See our website (www.grapeshillcommunitygarden.org) for further details and the latest photos.We are also on Facebook as "Grapes Hill Community Garden, Norwich". Jeremy Bartlett.

Above: Laying turf, photo copyright Grapes Hill Community Gardening Group

Follow-up discussion on Stoneleigh Talk - 12 April

Over a hundred people came to hear Nicole Foss's key presentation Making Sense of the Financial Crisis in the Era of Peak Oil at the URC on 25 March. Under the pseudonym Stoneleigh, Foss has been chronicling and interpreting the on-going credit crunch and the economic climate that has allowed it to happen both on the blog The Automatic Earth, and in her compelling public presentations.

Her focus brought together finance, energy, environment, psychology, population and real politik in order to explain why we find ourselves in a state of crisis and what we can do about it. She held our total attention for the entire hour and forty minutes and provoked several deep and wide-ranging questions.

For those who would like to follow up this talk (without Nicole), as well as discuss the challenges of climate change, economic recession, rising fuel costs, and the real value of houses and food, do come along to this meeting. Mark Watson

April 12 6pm Aladdin's Cafe, Magdalen Street. Contact: Christine Way training@transitionnorwich.org for further information.

Transition Circle West - 27 April

We have had two very dynamic and interesting meetings in March. The first was an exploration of herbal medicine, we discussed experiences, shared tips and, as ever, ate good food. Did you know that lettuce is soporific? That is why Peter Rabbit fell asleep!

Our second meeting was a talk, followed by a discussion, led by Ben King on sociocultural evolution and how this is relevant to Transition. It certainly got the brain cells working and it was a fascinating evening. I hope that the internet really does have the power to increase morality and allow the multitude to lead rather than a minority. If you would like to know more then check out Ben's blog.

We have another exciting line up in April. On the 16th April we are going to go on a foraging adventure to discover all of the wild goodies that we can enjoy at this time of year. Then on the 27th April we are going to be talking about political and parliamentary lobbying.

Anyone in the west of Norwich, who is trying to reduce their carbon footprint is welcome to join us, just get in touch with Helen on mshelenpallett@gmail.com.

Photo of some of the circle at our second march meeting

Low Carbon Cookbook - 20 April

We met just after the equinox and Spring had unaccountably entered the kitchen. In the Chinese five element system Spring is the wood season where everything branches out and all green, sour and sharp things provide the most nourishing and energetic energies for the body. So leaves were our main focus and foraging for them our main topic of conversation (see Elena's post in This Low Carbon Life and Transtion Circle West's foraging day).

Star attraction on the table was our community toss-it-in 24 green leaf salad (see list below), some from our vegetable patches and others gathered from our local lanes). More chickweed went into the omelette and we were all surprised by the alexander stems which, while no one could accuse them of being like asparagus, were much nicer than any of us remembered.

Afterwards we discussed vegetable oil as one of the key ingredients of the low-carbon larder. We looked at the production of five oils – hemp, olive, sunflower, sesame and rapeseed – finding out the value of cold-pressed, where the seeds were grown, what kind of methods and machines were used to extract them, the myriad medicinal uses of sesame, even finding a solar-powered olive oil company in Italy! We discussed prices, freight, health, fertilisers, human waste . . . the whole complex business of crop growing and all its (mostly) invisible resource and land use. When push comes to shove oils that could be grown here commercially are hemp and rapeseed (now both grown on a small, and expensive scale). Sunflower too at a pinch. We’re going to miss those olives! Charlotte Du Cann

Some of our 24 Leaves of Spring: rainbow chard, parsley, fennel, ground ivy, sorrel, rocket, endive, sage, purslane, landcress, tansy, mugwort, chives, parsley, lovage, dill, alexander, bittercres, salad burnet, dandelion, hawthorn, jack-in-the-hedge, chickweed, cleavers, plus violets and primroses.

REPORT: Spring scheming update - Exciting new ideas

Thank you to everyone who came to the Spring Scheming evening and made it a success. I was inspired by the breadth of ideas that emerged and by the new ideas that are being taken forward from it. We started by celebrating all of our fantastic successes of the past two and a half years, including but not limited to, the Norwich FarmShare Project, This Low Carbon Life blog and the Transition Circles.

We then imagined Norwich in 5 years time and wrote down all of the brilliant changes that had happened. Once these were grouped into rough topics and we had eaten the delicious food we got down to the hard graft of how we could make some of these ideas a reality. One of the groups were enthused by the idea of organising series of discussions in a variety of cafes that were not specifically transition related, but were designed to get people talking and building community. This group are meeting again to take this idea forward.

The other group wanted a community woodland and a beekeeping cooperative. There has been talk before of a community woodland so they were going to follow that up. They were also going to contact Sustainable Bungay about their beekeeping cooperative(CSA).

So all in all a rather exciting meeting! A list of all of the ideas that were mooted can be found in the resources section. If you would like to be involved in setting up any of these projects then please let me know and I will endeavour to put you in touch with the movers and shakers.(kezereky_the_first@hotmail.com). So once again thank you and here's to another two and a half years of amazing projects together. Kerry Lane

Photo: busy bees from Bungay Community Bees by Mike Southern

Volunteers Needed! Norwich FarmShare

We're starting to recieve seeds and in another two weeks we'll be transplanting our first lettuce and peas. This is the start of the busiest time of the year, we're working the soil, then sowing seeds and transplanting seedlings whenever its not raining.

I was wondering if anyone wanted to come and join me during these busy days. It's not glamorous work, but I always found that sitting on the transplanter with a friend on a sunny day and planting crops that we'll get to eat was certainly not a chore.

When we're using the transplanter we'll need one person to drive the tractor then two people to sit behind and handle the seedling. This work starts mid April and goes on until mid July or so (if the weather co-operates). Eventually we'll need help weeding as well, so if you're particularly skilled in that area then don't worry - you'll have your chance! And if you have any other skills that you'd like to lend then drop me a line. Laura Creen

In the future volunteering for Norwich FarmShare will perhaps change but for the moment if you're interested you can contact me via email: lauracreen@gmail.com or mobile: 07983 506 500. Ideally I'm looking for someone that's available for between 4 and 8 hours, and whether it's weekdays or weekends just let me know.

Planting onions at Postwick

Communications Update

It could be argued that the Transition Movement would not have happened without everyday access to the web. From the Network site to Rob Hopkin's blog, Transition Culture to the initiatives' newsletters and googlegroups, the communications between people and other initiatives is multi-layered, creative, inventive. fast and highly productive (and sometimes overwhelming!)

At TN many of us write for the news,This Low Carbon Life and the FarmShare blogs, as well as tweet (under tnnorwich). We've also just added some regularly updated links to news items from the Transition Network and other Transition communities (see left hand column). Do let us know what you think or what you'd like to see more of. Meanwhile check out our latest social networking tool. Simeon Jackson reports:

Although Transition Norwich has been on Facebook since 2007 (which is before Transition Norwich had even been unleashed!), we have recently been making efforts to bring everything up to date, and to guide anyone interested in Transition towards relevant information.

Ever since Facebook came onto the online scene, it has been a fantastic tool for spreading the word about new concepts, ideas and events. We would love to use it to its full potential: to tell stories of our transition experience; to raise awareness of peak oil, climate change, and the potentials of the transition approach in tackling them; to expand Transition Norwich and include Facebook users as part of the Transition Norwich community.

You can help progress Transition Norwich through facebook by: - Joining the facebook group - Inviting your friends to the facebook group, or to our events - Posting on your wall about Transition Norwich and what we are doing - Sharing news articles, blog posts, events and websites by posting links on your wall. Happy Facebooking!

For further details about Communications contact Charlotte Du Cann

Photo: Sustainable Bungay's Save Our Library read-in from tipping point by Charlotte Du Cann

Call for hair donations

New research has shown that by far the most efficient form of insulation is human hair. And what a brilliant way to make use of all of those clippings that are currently going to waste!
The transition energy and buildings group are going to be talking to all of the local hairdressers to see whether they can source enough hair to insulate the new compost toilet that has been constructed on Norwich Farmshare's Postwick site. This is to try and prevent it from freezing next winter, which could cause expensive damage to the new system.

They are going to need about a tonne of hair to do a proper job and if they manage to collect more than this then they may be able to insulate the shipping container as well so that Laura has a warm office.

If you know of any local hairdressers who may be willing to donate their trimmings or if you would like to donate your hair when you cut it at home, then please contact Kerry on (kezereky_the_first@hotmail.com) to arrange collection.

Photo: the currently uninsulated compost toilet

Saddle up and change the world

Gear up for a two-wheeled revolution – join a 2011 Otesha UK cycle tour!
Do something worthwhile with your summer! Cycle around the country as part of a mobile low carbon community delivering workshops and an awesome play about environmental and social sustainability in schools and youth clubs along the way. There are two tours to choose from: Northern Soul (10th June – 23rd July) and Tartan Trail (5th August – 17th September).

Join us in taking in the delights of the UK from our saddles, performing a play, making the world a better place, learning new skills (bike maintenance, theatre, consensus decision-making, sustainable and group living… the list goes on), meeting new friends, and generally having a laugh and making mischief.

Having been on an Otesha tour last summer I cannot recommend it enough. I had an amazing time, learnt so much, made many new friends and felt part of the change I wanted to see in the world. I can already feel the longing to go on tour again this summer, but I should really get a job, damn...

If you’re 18 to 28 and passionate about creating a sustainable future, then come ride with us. Experience not necessary. Find out more at www.otesha.org.uk/cycletours and check out the video below. Places are first come, first served, so get your skates on!

If you have any questions or would just like to have a chat about it, then give Otesha a call on 0207 377 2109 or email cycletours@otesha.org.uk. Kerry Lane