Notes from last night’s meeting

TTF Meeting at The Lantern, St Thomas on the Bourne
7.30 pm Monday 21st September

Present: Ian Bysh, Finn Jackson, Joyce Hurd, David Hepper, Rob Simpson.

Apologies: Rob forgot the keys (but remembered to bring the milk) !

The small group identified four topics for discussion tonight:

> David’s idea of a “Boys’ Toys/Gadget Swap Spot”
> Ian’s Electric Bike/Car Share scheme
> Rob’s proposal for a successor project to the Garden Share Scheme (FGS)
> Finn’s request to talk about reorganising TTF meetings.

In the event we decided to focus on the Boys’ Toys Swap Spot (BTSS), ideas for a successor to FGS and the matter of TTF reorganisation.

There were also annoucements about FLFI, Flashmob, the upcoming Permaculture AGM, and sale of hazelnuts at £1/bag.

Thanks to Rob for chairing this meeting.

Next week’s meeting will be at Waverley Borough Council offices, from 7pm, when members of Transition Towns Godalming and Haslemere will be attending, as well as some WBC councillors.

David’s idea of a “Boys’ Toys/Gadget Swap Spot”

David outlined his BTGSS exchange idea as a way to encourage more reusing and better quality purchasing of domestic gadgetry. This was expanded to include the development of a mend and repair servicing “culture” as part of Farnham’s resilience. Concern was expressed how this idea could be marketed and who formed the target group. It could also be a fund raiser for TTF. We concluded with an action: David would draft a concept briefing paper for TTF feedback and use the final draft as an open letter to the Herald.

Rob’s proposal for a successor project to the Garden Share Scheme (FGS)

Rob and Ian explained that the FGS had produced different results from expected. A surprisingly high number of garden-owners had been prepared to share their gardens, but this had not been matched by the number of people wanting to use those gardens.

Two ways forward are suggested. One is that FLFI (who are looking for land) might want to take over the gardens. The other is that we work directly with the people on the allotment waiting list and find out if they would like to secure land for an additional community allotment project.  To do this we discussed various strategies to approach FTC, in particular Kevin Taitt, in as helpful a way as possible.

We concluded with an action: Ian to contact Kevin asap and arrange a meeting.

How we run our meetings:

Finn explained that the TTF “fringe” meeting, at the Transition Training w/e, had come to a key realisation: we still think Transition is important, but we are not enjoying the meetings.

So we discussed possible alternative arrangements for meeting:

> Fortnightly meetings rather than monthly
> Monthly with working groups (WGs) meeting fortnightly
> Monthly core group meetings with WGs self-organising their meetings via a ning.com website
> Monthly “green drinks” at a pub.

The preferred option seemed to be for less frequent “core group” meetings with more use (by specific Working Groups) of a social networking site like ning.com or, as David suggested, huddle. (Please note that “As of 4pm GMT today [10 Sep 2009], 33 million Ning members can enjoy Huddle Workspaces.”

Transition Forest Row have a ning.com site and we decided look at this.  If we went ahead, then the social network site would replace our Google discussion site. Ning provides blog pages, discussion fora, sub-group pages etc. and appears more versatile than the current google facility.

Action on this is pending further discussion, although “green drinks” were unanimously approved.

Notices.  There was a brief notice session.

Finn reminded us that the next meeting of TTF is jointly with other TTs from the Waverley area.  The meeting is at 7.00pm  28th September at Waverley Borough Council offices in Godalming.  There may be some Waverley Borough councillors observing.

Joyce reminded us that the FLFI holds its AGM on 17th October at Runfold and TTF people would be welcome. Joyce is keen to promote joint FLFI/TTF actions and one possibility is that FLFI gets involved with the FGS, another is to hold jointly a stall at the monthly Farmers’ Market in Farnham.

Rob said that the Permaculture Association of Britain (PAB) are holding their AGM at Trudy Thompson’s Bricks and Bread SLC in Aldershot on 17th October and that a “fringe” meeting with PAB staff is available for anyone from the area interested on the evening of Friday 16th, probably in the pub next door to B & B. An email about this will be circulated shortly.

Ian commented on how well the “Flash Mob” event on Monday midday at Gostrey Meadow had gone and how much fun it had been. About 15 people joined the manifestation, including the police! Ian plans to make this an institution. (For background explanation, see this page.)

The meeting finished at about 9.15pm with a sale of hazel nuts – in their shells! – at  £1 a bag.  Apply to Ian if you want to purchase.

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