Wednesday, February 23, 2011

What a 'Waste' of an evening!

What a 'Waste' of an evening! 
Report on DWI Meeting 'What do we do with Waste' 22nd Feb 2011

A cold 22 February 2011 saw some 25 interested supporters treated to 4 excellent talks on the subject of 'Waste'.

Graeme Lawes, from the East Kent Partnership (joint body formed by Dover, Thanet and Shepway Councils), started off the evening and brought us up to date on the proposed recycling and waste service due to begin in the autumn.

Daphne Tutton followed Graeme and emphasised the importance of not wasting food and told us about some of the dishes we could make with leftovers.

Ruth Searle from White Cliffs Freegle told us how the web site came into being, how to become a member, how to use it and the physical and mental benefits.

Geoff Warren gave us a very visual presentation about what can be done with furniture that had been scrapped but had been rescued and restored. Refreshments were then served and discussions continued for some time before the evening was brought to a close.

Thank you Vicki for organising and the report and Rose Dowd for the Photos

Victoria's Green Matters - 23rd Feb 2011

Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent Mercury:
Good news this week about our forests. A burst of people power – the campaigning website ‘38 degrees’attracted 532,000 signatures - has caused the government to think again and cancelled plans that would have enabled them to sell off the entire Forestry Commission estate.

For those of us who only use forests for leisure pursuits, it was unthinkable that this part of our country could have been removed. For those who work with the forests, no doubt they would have feared losing their jobs in this depressing economic climate.

There obviously has to be commercial forestry in our country to raise money to help pay for the upkeep of the less profitable but culturally important woodland that we like to visit. In fact, we need to plant more trees and provide many more forests near to towns and cities for people to enjoy.

Forests are ‘carbon sinks’. Trees are the best thing we have to soak up the carbon emissions we create from our every day lives and which are causing the climate to warm. If an extra 4% of our land was planted with trees over the next forty years, it could lock up 10% of the nation’s predicted carbon emissions by 2050. It is not only the Amazon rain forest that we need to protect; we must care about our own forests.

A very interesting option for the future of our forests that has come to light is for the government to continue to run the commercial forests and to offer the rest to communities for free, to enhance protection for the forests and access for the public. The National Trust looks to be the body that might be the one to achieve this. Giving communities a vested interest in their trees results in responsibility and conservation.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Proposed wind farm on the Kentish Flats

From our colleagues in Transition Town Whitstable:

Kentish Flats Windfarm Extension – Have your say
Please see below for information on the consultation exercise on the proposed extension to the Kentish Flats Windfarm.

“As you may know, Vattenfall is in the process of putting together an application to add up to 17 wind turbines to the existing 30 turbines at the five-year old Kentish Flats wind farm. It’s really important that the community and all those with an interest in our proposal to extend Kentish Flats get involved and tell us what they think.

From 31 January until 4 March 2011 Vattenfall is conducting a community consultation regarding the proposed extension which is located off the coast near Herne Bay and Whitstable.

There will be two public consultation events in February in Herne Bay and Whitstable and we encourage as many people as possible to come along ... Read more at the TTW site

Monday, February 21, 2011

Lydd Airport inquiry in 2nd week

Guardian 21st Feb 2011
"Nuclear risk from plane crashes is higher than estimated, inquiry shows A plane crash could trigger a 'significant radiological release', according to an inquiry into the expansion of Lydd airport in Kent
The risk that planes will crash into nuclear plants and release potentially lethal clouds of radioactivity is significantly higher than official estimates, according to expert evidence to a public inquiry.

Studies submitted to the inquiry to expand Lydd airport in Kent, which began last week, cast doubt on assurances from the government's Health and Safety Executive (HSE) that the dangers of accidental plane crashes are too small to worry about.

An analysis by an independent expert concludes that the method used by the HSE to calculate the likelihood of crashes is "flawed" and could underestimate the risk by 20%. And a previously secret report for the HSE accepts that a crash could trigger a "significant radiological release". read more here

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Big Climate Reconnection - 16th April

On April 16th the Stop Climate Chaos Big Climate Reconnection takes to the road. Cyclists from Greenpeace, Oxfam, UNA, Fair Trade, Christian Aid, SPOKES, and other members of the Stop Climate Chaos coalition will cycle from Dover to Walmer to deliver a petition to our MPs. We will then cycle back to Canterbury to deliver a message to Canterbury City Council: they must take action to clean up air pollution in Canterbury. Everyone is welcome.


Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Victoria's Green Matters - 16th Feb 2011

Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent Mercury:
Do you have a garden? Are you able to look after it and grow all the things that you want? Maybe you live in a flat and don’t even have a balcony. Many people long to grow their own flowers, fruit and vegetables but the long wait for an allotment, or even part of one, is very dispiriting.

You may think that it is just ‘fashionable’ to want to grow your own produce but as transport costs rise and prices increase, as they already are, your own fruit and vegetables not only taste nicer but are on hand for you to gather. If you can grow organically, so much the better with the knowledge that you are not eating nasty chemicals.

You may have a large garden – perhaps too large. Maybe you are finding that the garden you once loved so much to cultivate has become something of a chore of late. You may have years of experience of growing wonderful vegetables to pick and take straight to the kitchen. Wouldn’t it be great to be able to share the knowledge that you have accumulated with someone else?

With the coming of climate change and rising oil prices, we will need to be able to become self sufficient in food production and this means growing our own fruit and vegetables on all available land.

Have you ever thought of sharing a garden? If you have garden to spare, would you like to help someone else to learn how to grow things? Do you live in a flat or a house without a garden and would love to have a little plot to grow your own?

‘Deal With It’ have started a ‘Deal Garden Share’ and if you would like more details or to sign up, please visit or telephone 01304 372673

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

DWI Meeting - What do we do about Waste?

Deal With It's meeting on the 22nd February is What do we do with Waste ?
  • Daphne Tutton - 'Turn leftover food into tasty dishes'
  • Whitecliffs Freegle - 'Don't throw it, Give it away'
  • Geoff Warren - 'Repair and re-use it. It's not rubbish'
  • Graeme Laws - Dover District Council - 'Dover's recycling plan'
Tuesday 22nd February 2011 - 7.30pm
43 Victoria Road
CT14 7AY

Friday, February 11, 2011

Solar park at Ebbsfleet

A planning application on the 30 acre site has been submitted by James and Alexandra Pace and includes 60 rows of 3-metre-high solar panels installed between the Richborough Power Station and East Kent Access Road.

The proposed solar park is next to six conservation sites stretching from Sandwich to Ramsgate via Pegwell Bay. read more here

Plans in for Solar Park at Ebbsfleet

Plans have been submitted for a Solar Park at Ebbsfleet.

The council has received an application for the use of approximately 12 hectares of land at Ebbsfleet for a Solar Park. The application involves the installation of approximately 60 rows of solar panels, with each being 3 metres in height, on a triangle of land between the Richborough Power station, the Southern Water Waste Treatment Works and the new East Kent Access road. The proposal also includes associated equipment cabinets, and a 2.5 metre high fence would be erected around the perimeter of the site.

The applicant has stated that the panels would produce an average of 4,000 to 5,000 megawatts of electricity per year, which would be fed into the national grid via a substation.

The application is accompanied by a habitat survey and assessment of the development on the designated nature conservation sites in the surrounding area. This applicant states the proposal will provide enhancements to bio-diversity, by providing wildlife corridors along the Minster Stream, which runs through the site, and along the south-west boundary.

Details of the application are available on the council's website using UK Planning under reference 11/0029. The plans can also be viewed by visiting Thanet's Gateway Plus in Cecil Street, Margate from 9am to 6pm, Monday to Friday, with extended opening until 8pm on Thursdays. Thanet's Gateway Plus is also open from 9am to 5pm on Saturdays.

The deadline for comments to be received is Friday 25 February 2011. Comments should be sent to The application will be considered by the council’s Planning Committee in Spring 2011.

Planning link

Social Enterprise information packs for community groups

From the Transition Movement site - a collection of really useful guides :"
report coverLocal United is a new group of climate change groups dedicated to sharing their experience of working on climate change issues at the community level as social enterprises. In their own words:
Local United brings together and supports community activists who are setting up social enterprises to address the challenges of peak oil and climate change. It aims to speed up the rate at which good ideas are adopted by community groups motivated to build low-carbon economies.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Kent Micro Wind power firm wins award

First time Rushlight Awards entrant Luethi Enterprises Ltd is delighted to have won both of the categories they entered.

The Rushlight Wind Power Award was earned for the company’s patented 500W Silent Wind Turbine, which is a robust and efficient power solution for remote regions. The mechanical speed regulator ensures that the Silent Wind Turbine continues to produce maximum power – even in high winds, when other wind turbines have to be switched off. 100% of the power yielded is available for the end user, as there are no electronics requiring power. The simplicity and durability of the design means it’s ideal for remote applications.

Proof of this clever-but-simple technology can be seen in an early pre-production prototype installed at a farm in Nottinghamshire. This turbine powers an LED streetlight non-stop. The turbine has been in place for over four years, and has not required any maintenance or repairs – despite numerous storms in the area over that time.

The Rushlight Waste Recycling Award celebrates the Luethi Enterprises’ use of recycled plastic barrels to create cheap wind power for developing countries. Enquiries for efficient, cost-effective wind turbines saw Matthew Luethi acquiring used 220L plastic barrels. He then cuts the blades from this in a unique way that creates lift – and maximum power. This wind turbine requires very little breeze in order to achieve its 250W output, and a sample of this registered design is currently in transit to Ghana for evaluation by a charitable organisation.

“I’m absolutely delighted to have won both these Awards – especially as it’s the first time we’ve entered!” says Matthew Luethi, the Inventor and Managing Director of Luethi Enterprises Limited.

“It’s great to be able to celebrate our success to date, but the hard work doesn’t stop here. I’ve been working away at this project in my garage for a number of years now, and it’s time for a production partner to come on board, so that this business can grow and flourish.”

“I’ve got so many orders, but I just can’t make them all myself,” says Matthew Luethi. “The company needs a production partner to come on board that’s willing to work collaboratively with us. Like many small businesses, the unwillingness of banks to lend money for expansion are an issue, so we’re looking for a more synergistic and creative approach.”

The ambitions of Luethi Enterprises do not stop with micro wind generation.

“Our technology is totally scalable. We’re starting our learnings with small, low-cost turbines, and our developments can then be applied to larger, more powerful units.”

“Many of the requests we’ve received so far are from people or organisations who need power in remote locations, be it for street lighting, emergency lighting, CCTV, heating water, or powering battery banks in eco-houses.”

Another application for the silent wind turbines that’s currently being tested is to power water pumps.

Luethi Enterprises Limited was established in 2005 by Swiss-born Matthew Luethi, who is a retired farmer. The company is headquartered in Kent , England

Victoria's Green Matters - 10th Feb 2011

Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent Mercury:
Litter! How does it strike you? So many people are complaining about the state of our lovely little town with regard to the amount of litter that continues to pollute our streets.

It is a proven fact that the more untidy and dirty a place is, the more untidy and dirty it will become. If we could maintain clean and tidy streets, there would be more encouragement for people to keep them that way. We are all responsible for the surroundings in which we live and, therefore, we are all responsible for making sure that we do not drop litter.

We cannot blame the council for not cleaning the streets. There should not be any litter in the streets. How many times have we heard the complaint ‘I pay my council tax – the council should do it’? Surely we should be making sure that at least the area around our own home is free from litter. There are areas that we cannot keep clean, such as the railway station that is the place that visitors see first on arrival and creates such a poor impression of our town. Some years ago a local campaign was launched which succeeded in tidying up the station but of recent time this has been neglected.

But we are only reacting to the problem when we strive to get our streets clean. Parents and teachers should be instilling local pride into children, making sure that they do not drop litter. If they have brought along a chocolate bar or a packet of crisps, it is easy to carry the empty packet back home if there is no litter bin nearby. Other countries have this culture where everyone is responsible and so their towns are much cleaner.

Punishment is not the answer but prevention is. If you can, pick up that sweet wrapper outside your home and create a clean, tidy street that others may be enthused to maintain.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Deal With It's AGM

Deal With It celebrated its fourth birthday at its AGM on Saturday.
The Highlights of the Year
  • Successful Green Energy Forum to showcase options available under new Feed-In-Tariff scheme
  • The Call of the Wild meeting with RSBP and Geoff Meaden
  • Chicken Count & 'Home Runs's
  • New Format monthly meetings with a wide range of speakers, films and discussions.
  • Transition Town all-day workshop
  • Co-organised Deal's Zero Carbon Concert
  • Several Deal Beach Cleans
  • Stalls all around the district
  • Launch of our local Food Campaign - Delicious Deal
A big thanks to your all for your great support for our events during 2010 and our many volunteers for turning up to make it happen!

A special thanks to Rosie Rechter for holding us all together, our current organising group members and to past members Becky and Jeremy for their great support .

This year's programme:
  • Delicious Deal  food initiatives planned - Deal Garden Share, Guerrilla Gardening, Community Gardens and Wildlife friendly gardening. Food Mapping & nutrition, cooking your own, basic baking and real bread.
  • Energy Group - ideas for a Green Energy Fair, Exploring options community generation and coops for PVs and Understanding what it takes to Power Deal.
  • Transport Group - building on our work on local trains, bus services and car sharing. Supporting the new Cycle Forum and colleagues in Trains4Deal
  • Waste Group - get the group going (come to our meeting on the 22nd Feb)
  • We will be looking a larger event in the Autumn on Transition and local food
The meeting discussed and approved a new constitution for the Group - This is a stepping stone to make us into a formal transition town group. Thanks to Deal Fairtrade for attending and of course for the biscuits!

We are have two vacancies on the committee - so if you want to do a bit more or have an green idea you want to make happen contact us at
This year’s committee is:
· Rosemary Rechter (Co-ordinator), Victoria Nicholls (Secretary), Helen Reeve Stoffer (Treasurer)
· Charles Franklin, Sue Delling, Sarah Gleave & Steve Wakeford 

Cycle Forum - Next meeting 16th March

CYCLE FORUM next meeting

Please reserve this date in your diary for the next meeting of the CYCLE FORUM for the Deal, Dover & Sandwich district:

Wed 16th March 2011 7pm - 9pm, again at the Royal Hotel, Deal

This will be a "working meeting" following our first general discussion on 31st January, which got things going nicely - see report and photos at

Full details and agenda to follow.

Hope the date and time is convenient, and look forward to seeing you on 16th March,

best wishes,

Ian Killbery

PS Your views and suggestions on facilities for cyclists along the A@ and into Dover Docks are requested - see below:

The Highways Agency has commissioned a review of current cycle facilities along the A2 between Dover (Eastern Docks Roundabout) and Canterbury (Upper Harbledown Interchange).
Their desktop analysis and initial site visits have identified existing and potential cycle routes close to the A2.  It would be very useful to learn of any of the following issues along the A2 between Dover and Canterbury:
-          Problems where existing cycle routes join or cross the trunk road;
-          Suppressed demand due to lack of appropriate cycle facilities;
-          Poor or inconsistent signage of routes.
The study is a pre-feasibility assessment of the improvements which MAY be possible along the study corridor.  Within the design/works budget likely to be available, potential improvements will focus on signing and the promotion of alternative local routes.

 However, the study will touch upon potential longer term solutions.  It will prioritise these potential improvements so that schemes can be progressed to design and construction at a later stage, subject to the availability of funding.  
They would welcome the thoughts of members of the new Dover and Deal Cycle Forum. Please send responses directly to no later than Monday 14th February 2010.
- snd copy to

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Garden Share in Deal High St

A great response today in Deal High Street  to the launch of our 'Deal Garden Share Scheme' - we handed out over 150 leaflets and had an number of interested enquiries. Many thanks to Rosie, Sue, Vicki and Charles (support from Tony) for helping...

Full details of the Scheme can be found here

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Deal Writers Group

Deal Writers Group
Exciting New Anthology Launch
An evening of entertainment with readings from your local writers

7.30 – 9.00 p.m. Deal Town Hall , Thursday 3rd March 2011 (Doors open 7.15)
Free glass of wine.

Enter our limerick competition on the night for a chance to win a free, signed copy of the new anthology. Simply complete either of the following limericks:

Limerick 1 – first line: My father said, “Get a career …

Limerick 2 – first line: In Deal every day you can find …
Anthologies can be purchased on the night for £4.50

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Deal Garden Share

Deal Garden Share
This Saturday (5th Feb) we are launching our local Garden Share Scheme - come and find us on the High Street between 10:30-12:30pm and find out more about the scheme.

The Deal Garden Share scheme matches and introduces committed and enthusiastic growers with local garden owners who want to see their gardens being used more productively. In doing so both parties share in the produce grown and enjoy the garden.

We have a checklist of information aimed at both growers and garden owners that aims to describe both parties expectations, responsibilities and 'ground rules'.

This is not commercial undertaking - its about mutual benefit, trust and building the solidarity of our community.

We are also here to help - We hope get a group of Garden Doctors to share their knowledge and experience to mentor both garden owners & growers to get the best out the space available. We hope get some support to get gardens up and going, if that needs a few volunteers for some hard digging!

We want to hear from you if:
  • You have a Garden or plot owner which is underused or unmanaged and would like to consider sharing it
  • You are a potential Grower who has little or no access to land but wants to grow you own Vegetables and Fruit
  • A experienced Gardener who would be willing to share you knowledge by mentoring garden owners/new growers
Contact: or phone 01304 372673. Forms and posters for Growers and Garden Owners can be found here

You can help be passing the word on about the scheme, putting up a poster in your window or at your community group.

The Scheme is one of Deal With It's Local Food Group ('Delicious Deal') initiatives which aims to foster and support local food production (in all its forms, from extending the provision of cheap local allotments, the formation of Community Gardens & Orchards, Guerillia Gardening, Food Co-ops and local commercial organic food) with the aim of reducing our carbon footprint as individuals and as a community.

As a Group we also support the LandShare scheme which is a good alternative if you are looking for larger pieces of land or sites outside the district

Peak Oil: Rob Hopkins speaking in 2009 on TED ...

Rob Hopkins speaking on TED network on peak oil and transition in 2009....

Link if you cannot see the embedded video

Deal With IT - AGM Saturday 5th Feb at 2:30pm

Deal With It's AGM is this Saturday at 2:30pm at Dealability 43 Victoria Road Deal.

We have a proposal to replace our constiution with one closer aligned to the Transition Movement - This should be emailed out .

Please come along and  get involved. We are looking for volunteers for the Steering and Theme groups around Food, Energy, Waste and Transport. The only qualifications you need is enthusiasm and wanting to make Deal a Greener Town!

(to be confirmed)

1. Coordinators report for 2010
2. Treasurers report for 2010
3. Press report
4. New Constitution - discussion & decision
5. Officers & Steering Group
6. AOB

Victoria's Green Matters - 3rd Feb 2011

Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent Mercury:
How about a fish supper tonight? Or do you regularly eat fish on Fridays? Fish has been extolled as the food for ‘healthy eating’ by many. Unfortunately, there is a ‘but’. Do you ever give thought to how your fish is caught or where it comes from? It does not originate from frozen blocks in a freezer cabinet at the local supermarket.

Fishing is a dangerous business and many men have lost their lives braving cold and mountainous seas to bring their catch ashore. Fishing has become an industry; huge factory ships, particularly from Russia, spend weeks plundering the fish supplies in the seas around our islands. Over-fishing by all nationalities has led to some species of fish becoming seriously depleted and, in some seas, extinct.

In an attempt to control the amount of fish that is taken from the sea, the European Union (EU) created the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP). While obviously well meaning this has led to fishermen being allocated ‘quotas’ or regularised amounts of certain fish types that can be caught. Fishing over these quotas will result in fines for the fishermen. Unfortunately, it is impossible to fish for only one type without catching many others, allowed or not. Fishermen have to discard or throw away fish that are caught ‘over quota’ and most of these fish die.

How wasteful is this? The CFP is being reformed before implementation in 2012 and TV personality Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall has launched a campaign to stop the wasteful discard system and replace it with something more sustainable. To preserve the limited stocks of some fish, we must develop the taste for other types that are plentiful and ask our fish shops to supply them.

Join the campaign – visit www.hugh’ – sign up and tell all your friends to sign up too!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Deal's Cycle Forum - Launch meeting 31st Jan report


Some twenty representatives of various organisations interested in or concerned with cycling gathered at the Royal Hotel to discuss the possible forming of a cycle forum in Dover District.

People introduced themselves and the organisations they represented and gave a brief outline of why they had come.  KCC Deal Councillor Kit Smith and Kent Highways officer, Steve Darling, spoke about the developments in Deal and Dover.  DDC Councillor Nigel Collor and DDC officer Gordon Measey talked about things from the district perspective.

They all stressed the importance of a bottom up, community lead approach where concerns and priorities could be fed into the councils by a group who agreed on what is important to local residents and cycle users.

People felt that the existing cycle paths needed better surfacing which was less costly and much safer to use.  Cycle paths needed to be “joined up” and clearly signed so that cyclists knew where to ride in safety.  It is clear that there are very few dedicated cycle paths in the county.  Almost all are shared by cyclists, pedestrians and people with disabilities.  The general public need educating on the use of the paths so everyone can share them in safety.

SPOKES representatives said that there are cycle forums in all other East Kent Districts and they are a useful in communicating the needs of cyclists and pedestrians alike to KCC and those responsible for the creation of cycle paths.

Cllr. Smith suggested that the forum’s aims should be:

•    Networking among members
•    Planning new cycle ways and monitoring plans for those in the pipe line
•    Giving advice and being advocates for cycling
•    Providing a connection between users, planners and politicians

It was agreed that Ian Killbery should arrange a further meeting in early April at the later time of 7pm, preferably not on a Monday.  This meeting was tasked with the election of a Chairman and Minutes Secretary.  The agenda would contain an update on events since this meeting.

(Thank you Sue Delling for the report and Rose Dowd for the Photos ...)