Saturday, May 23, 2015

Deal With It - Transition Deal Monthly Huddle 23rd May

We had our monthly Deal With It Organising Huddle at the Landmark Cafe this morning:

Food Projects
- Next Seedy Sat (30th May) arrangements
- Progress on Landmark Garden Changes (should complete on Monday + time for willow raised bed) +£170 of new native planting
- Next Seedy will be on 4th July with Applefest 17th Oct and 'DealWali' 19th Dec
- Deal Station Garden running ok and coldframe up and working

Beach Cleans
- Still looking for finance to replace pickers stock
- Next one Walmer on Sunday 7th June
- Sandown 5th July
- Deal MCS one 20th Sept

Green Gym
- Jane getting details on Ash
- Chris T has prices on Rugby Club
- Sue has details on possible North Deal one

Energy Projects
- Reportback on Folkestone Community Energy meeting
- Workshops in Ashford Monday 8th June Sarah, Rosie, Steve attending
- Idea of developing a community energy audit pilot at Landmark
- More work on energy champions
- Stephanie looking at Green Doors event
- Possible project at Betteshanger

Anti-Fracking update from EKAF - Village groups looking at community energy

- Deal Folk By the Sea has raised over £300 for gardens. Big Thanks to them

- No takers yet for transition conference in sept
- Looking at ideas to support the formation of Dover Transition Group
- Ideas for COP Paris event in Deal in Dec
- Ideas for a 'Celebrate Your Deal' to showcase the range of community activity in Deal
- Meeting with Kent Wildlife Trust on new MCZs and their plans for Coastal Wardens

Next Huddle 27th June 9:30am Landmark cafe - all welcome

Friday, May 15, 2015

Deal Beach Clean 12th May

Deal's part of Marine Conservation Society's Big Beach Clean on Tuesday 12th May

We collected between Walmer castle and the Sea Scouts hut. Fifteen of us collected 37.5 kilos of recorded rubbish with a 7 kilo bag being the heaviest - just lots of fishing line, plastic materials etc.

A big thank you to all the volunteers who helped on tuesday and especially those from Deal M&S

Next Beach Clean is on Sunday 7th June meet at Sea Cafe on Walmer Green at 10am

Next Deal Seedy Saturday is on Sat 30th May

The next episode of Deal's Seedy Saturday will be on Sat 30th May between 11am to 1ish.
This will be a seed and plant swap plus we hope to have a few local produce stalls - Sue Evans from AnSugan will be there with recycled bags and accessories along with Chocolution with their raw chocolate tasters.

We will also have some music from the Sunshine Ukes.

The team of volunteers are mid-way in reshaping the garden - the idea is take out the middle bed (which has been problematic from a growing view) to produce more people space for events, the cafe & an outdoor room for the Centre as well as improving wheelchair access. Imogen has plans for willow raised bed and we have put over £170 worth of interest native & edible plants in
 Our Summer Seedy Saturday will be on Saturday 4th July

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Victoria's Green Matters - 14th May 2015

Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent Mercury:

There has been a subtle change over recent months within the banking sector regarding investment in the coal industry. Many companies are looking for new ways to invest money away from fossil fuels, generally not because of any ethical concerns over climate change but because of the loss of value of these reserves as the world looks away from this damaging way of producing energy.

During this current trend, it was surprising to read about one of Britain’s largest banks, Standard Chartered, and its loan of £450 million to one of the biggest coal mines in the world, in Queensland, Australia. It is well known that the present Australian government is led by an adamant climate change denier and many environmental measures have been cut back so it’s no surprise that Australia is going ahead with a new mine. At least eleven international banks have distanced themselves from funding new coal mines in this area but Standard Chartered has gone ahead.

Further concerns regarding this development have been voiced by Unesco because of the situation of the port from where the 60 million tonnes per year of coal will be exported which is on Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, a World Heritage Site. Apart from damage to the reef itself from 11,000 ships passing through each year, the ancestral lands of Aboriginal groups would be destroyed and already critically endangered birds would be pushed to extinction.

The project would create a ‘carbon bomb’, undermining efforts to restrict global temperature rise to 2°C.

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Victoria's Green Matters - 7th May 2015

Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent Mercury:

There has been a wonderful and entertaining ‘green’ report in the press this week all about a bus in Bristol called the ‘poo bus’ because it is run on biomethane gas extracted from human waste. Bristol is European Green Capitol of 2015 and the poo bus, more properly called the Bio-Bus, is just one example of the innovative ideas that abound in the city.

Natural gas is a fossil fuel, formed from dead organic matter many millions of years ago and burns with emissions that result in climate warming. Biomethane is produced by anaerobic digestion – micro-organisms in the absence of oxygen break down human sewage and food waste to produce gas. This gas is then cleansed of impurities and carbon dioxide and, as a result, produces less greenhouse gas emissions – 80% less nitrogen oxide and 20-30% less carbon dioxide – and is almost free of particulates when used as a fuel.

The ‘BioBus’ is fuelled from the Bristol Sewage Treatment Works, situated seven miles from the city centre, where methane has been added to the national gas grid at the rate of 2,000 cubic metres per hour which is sufficient to power 8,300 homes. The one great drawback is that the bus must make the journey to the sewage works to refuel, miles from its route and the bus company cannot run any more ‘Bio-Buses’ until it can work out a more efficient way to refuel them.

This form of biofuel may well provide a solution the recent concerns over air pollution.

Saturday, May 2, 2015

Deal Beach Clean Tuesday 12th May 10am

The next Deal beach clean is tuesday 12th May at 10am meeting at the Pier. 

This is a organised by Marine Conservation Society working with Marks & Spencer corporate volunteers as part of the MCS's 'Big Beach Clean-up' week.

Deal With It is supporting this and our regular cleans will be 7th June Walmer Beach and 5th July Sandown Castle end of Deal Beach

full details on the MCS site

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Victoria's Green Matters - 30th April 2015

Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent Mercury:

There is more news this week of the effects of neonicotinoids on bees. A new study has shown that it is not only honey bees that are affected by these chemicals but also wild bee populations, including bumble bees and solitary bees.

There have been two studies, both published in the journal Nature, one of which shows that bees can become addicted to neonicotinoids just like humans become addicted to nicotine. The other study, the first to be conducted ‘in the field’, showed a dramatic effect on wild bees with populations being halved around fields treated with the chemicals.

The first study, conducted by Newcastle University, showed that bees preferred sugar solution containing imidaclopid and thiamethoxam, the principle neonicotinoids, suggesting that they had become hooked on the chemicals and would therefore not be able to avoid crops treated with them.

In the second study, conducted by scientists from Lund University in Sweden, it was discovered that bumble bee hives stopped growing and produced fewer queens when the chemicals were present. Further research was required regarding honey bees.

A bee expert at Sussex University, who was not involved in the research, has labelled the studies as ‘hugely significant’. It is no longer credible to say that the use of neonicotinoids does not harm wild bees.

It is amazing that the Crop Protection Association, speaking for the producers of the chemicals, still continues to maintain its stance that spraying crops with these pesticides is harmless to bees.

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Transition Conference: 18-20th September

The next International Transition Movement conference is down in Devon between the 18th - 20th September. If you are interested in going please let us know asap - this will need to be self-financed but we will look at options for fundraising for travel and other costs.

Looks really interesting and packed weekend of ideas to bring back to Deal

Full details are at

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Folkestone Transition Meeting on Local Energy 15th May

Deal With It Organising Group Monthy Huddle April

Deal With It's Organising Group had their monthly huddle at the Landmark Cafe on Saturday Morning...

Stuff we discussed:

  • Deal Station Garden: lots of work on planters and staging area. The Big Dig meadow making very successful if hard work over 20 people involved. meeting with National Rail on fenced off area and possible water on ramsgate side. Donated cold frame now operational.Sarah arranged watering rota
  • Landmark Garden: Core group Imogen, Tracy, Sue, Adrian, Sonja and Steve - £170 of interesting plants planted and looking at removing central bed to extend the 'people' space.  Town Council has flagged up we are stop one on the judges tour of SE in Bloom and they will also be going to Deal Station and to our colleagues at Sandown castle community garden
  • Deal Seedy Saturday - Next one on Saturday 30th May. Tracy organising a gathering to look at themes etc plus plan for July, October applefest and December Solstice fair
  • Beach Clean. March ones very sucessful with good tie up with colleagues in Kingsdown.
    • May : MCS National Mid-week one organised with M&S Tuesday 12th May 10am Deal Beach
    • June: Pop-up one for Walmer Beach meet at Sea Cafe Sunday June 7th 10am
    • July: Special 'Sandown Castle' Big Clean - Beach & Prom areas Sunday July 5th 10am - To support the Sandown Castle Community Gardeners who are on SE in Bloom judging circuit on 10th July
  • Green Energy
    • 15th May - Folkestone Transition and Community Energy South (CES)have a meeting on community energy in Folkestone
    • Lots of good work on Energy Champions locally saving over £700 off people's bills
    • Regional switching option coming up based on CESMeeting in Ashford 8th June
  • Green Gym
    • Mini-golf area been taken down
    • Contact artist group and Tides 
  • Transition Towns Conference 18-20th Sept - see who is interested and work £ support
  • Finance
    • PLI in place but expensive
    • Launching appeal for litter pickers (we need to replace about 20-30 @ £15)
    • Income around the garden projects is ok but need more fundraising for core DWI needed. Want to avoid public funds except for specific projects with community outcomes.
  • AOB
    • Next Huddle on 23rd May Landmark 9:30am
    • Need to discuss with DTC their representation after the elections
    • Ideas for pop-up library at Deal Station (Steve)
    • Ideas for Infogram on DWI (Stephanie)
    • Meeting with Kent Wildlife Trust in May to discuss joint activity on MCZ

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Victoria's Green Matters - 23rd April 2015

Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent Mercury:

It is a fact that climate change is the greatest challenge the world and all its occupants face today. For some developing countries this challenge is compromising economic growth, harming agriculture and causing social unrest. Water supplies are being threatened, natural resources stretched and infrastructure damaged.

For nations to develop in a sustainable way, clean sources of energy are essential. If nations have to resort to burning fossil fuels to give them the energy supplies they need then the climate will be damaged beyond recall.

Today’s coal industry is on its last legs. Coal is the dirtiest of fossil fuels and burning many million tonnes of it has brought us to where we are now with a warming climate and all that goes with it. Most developing countries are suffering from extreme weather events such as stronger storms, more destructive floods, longer droughts and altered seasonal timing of rain. But as the tide turns against coal, the industry has embarked on a global campaign to promote coal as the solution to energy poverty. The true cost of coal has to include the air pollution which is already reducing life expectancy in China and India; pollution causes hundreds of thousands of premature deaths each year in these countries.

The cost of energy production from solar has rapidly declined over the last few years and it is quick to install. It is reliable and the ability to store the produced electricity has improved, making it an increasingly attractive option for rural communities.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Victoria's Green Matters - 16th April 2015

Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent Mercury:

There was a dramatic announcement this week about the discovery of between 50billion and 100billion barrels of oil, lying under fields just north of Gatwick Airport. A very scary thought indeed! Only a climate change denier would celebrate such an occurrence as coal and oil are the dirtiest of fossil fuels and will do the most damage to the world’s changing climate.

We have also heard news of some brave Greenpeace campaigners who have boarded a Shell drilling rig on its way to the Alaskan Arctic to drill for oil in that most pristine of landscapes.

We must, of course, temper our horror of both happenings because we have to realise that we are a long way from the production of oil in both cases and at the present time the price of oil is low enough to discourage investment in drilling. If you are looking for good news, it is fair to say that the process of producing oil near Gatwick will not involve fracking and there are many such wells around the country that have been producing oil for many years.

It is difficult to believe that Shell have continued to go ahead with their plans to drill in the Arctic in the face of vigorous protests from around the world. It is unfortunate that while President Obama has announced plans to cut carbon emissions, he has also given Shell permission to drill in the Arctic. The climate cannot afford the burning of this fossil fuel