Notes from last night’s meeting

We met last night at The Barn, where Marios is anxiously awaiting the outcome of his licensing application.

We talked about four key projects:

> Climate Change Conference, Copenhagen
> How we spend Transition Town Farnham’s money
> Photovoltaic installation in Basle, France
> Sustainable Modern Person project

and shared four announcements:

> Maltings meeting
> Future Farms visit
> Exhibition of paintings of Farnham
> TTF meeting at Waverley Borough Council

Thanks to Casper Gray for chairing this meeting.

Next week’s meeting will be at St Thomas on the Bourne, and will be chaired by Robert Simpson.

Tonight we welcomed Kathryn Brooke from Elstead and Samuel Springer from Basle in France.

Also present were Casper Gray (Chair), Ian Bysh, Robert Simpson, David Hepper, Finn Jackson, Paul Whewell.

Climate Change Conference, Copenhagen

Ian wants to hold a Flash Mob to bring local attention to the Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen.

(A flash mob (or flashmob) is a large group of people who assemble suddenly in a public place, perform an unusual action for a brief time, then quickly disperse.) .

Here is what to do –

For further information see:

Then assemble at 12:18pm in Gostrey Meadows, Farnham (the park by the Cobbitt Pub and The Maltings) on Monday 21st September.

How we spend Transition Town Farnham’s money

Following the discussions and agreement reached at last week’s meeting, Finn ran through the process we had defined together for how TTF members will decide to spend TTF’s money.

The process was generally felt to be good, except that:

  1. In the step where “The chairman tells everyone how much money is in the bank account” there was concern that “the chairman” would not necessarily know this. The wording was asked to be changed to “Acting Treasurer, namely Finn Jackson”.
  2. There was concern that the process requires at least half of all ‘core team’ members to vote in order for monies to be assigned. There was uncertainty over who are ‘core team members’. It was agreed that Finn would circulate the newly-defined process to all members of the core team, giving them the opportunity to a) opt out and/or b) suggest others who should be added in.

> Subject to the above changes, the process was approved.
> Finn will circulate a copy to all members of the Core Team, as above.
> We will try out this approach, and can always adjust it as the need arises.

Photovoltaic Installation

Samuel, a visitor from France, gave an inspirational description of how he has successfully installed PV and Solar Thermal on his house and receives a handsome fixed feed-in tariff for the energy the produces.

The French government pays 50% of the cost of equipment (around €16,000 in Samuel’s case) but not the cost of installation (around €6,000 in Samuel’s case).

This provides more than 350 litres of hot water per day at around 75 degrees centigrade, so long as there are two or more hours of sunshine. In Samuel’s case this has meant providing more than enough hot water for three people with no additional heating since March this year.

The photovoltaic system produces around 3,000 kWh per year of green electricity, which Samuel sells for €0.59 / kWh (more than £1,000 over the year). This means the payback period is about 7 years. Given that the system is guaranteed for at least 20 years, this gives a healthy profit to the householder and explains why over 10% of houses in his village have already installed such systems, and many others are thinking of putting them in.

In the UK a similar “feeder tariff” system is due to be introduced next year.

Sustainable Modern Person

Casper is trying to work out something which is more wide-ranging than his previous ideas: how people can be incentivised to become ‘sustainable’; how the benefits and costs can be calculated and communicated; and finally guidance on how to do it.

A scheme similar to (but much more detailed and with costs and CO2 as well as links to suppliers) could be developed to give guidance and direction. This could take advantage of the wealth of expertise within the group. It was agreed that this was a good direction, as it would be quick and easy to get something started, which would be useful even without the detailed calculations of CO2 emissions, and could grow over time.

As ever, anyone interested to get involved, please get in touch with Casper.


The Maltings – Robert had organised a meeting with Gavin Stride (Director of The Maltings), which was held today. It was a lively meeting at a bustling Maltings, with good discussion, which focused on energy efficiency at The Maltings. Hopefully another meeting will be arranged soon to discuss other opportunities for collaboration.

Future Farms Open Day – On Tuesday 15th September Joyce is accompanying Susie Tavare to Martin near Fordingbridge, for a day’s event organised by the Soil Association: Future Farms Open Day. More info at:

Exhibition – Michael Blower’s paintings of Farnham are being exhibited at The Maltings (Long Kiln Room) until the start of October.

Waverley Meeting – a reminder that our TTF meeting on Monday 28 September will be held at the offices of Waverley Borough Council in Godalming. Members of Transition Towns Haslemere and Godalming will also be there, as well as (potentially) some Waverley councillors.

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