Tonight’s meeting

Another good meeting tonight. Half a dozen of us braved the cold, to meet at Ruth’s house.

We talked about (in reverse order):

  • A vision for Farnham
  • Cooperation with other groups/organisations in Farnham
  • Transport
  • The Bishops Meadows KidsFest
  • Directory of local food growers/producers
  • Natural History walks
  • Unused plots of land around Farnham

More details below.

Transition Meeting, 29 November 2010

We recapped what we did last time:

  • Dinner
  • Asking where our energy had been
  • Looking at getting most benefits from changes we make in our own lives.
  • Wanting to work together to make projects happen.
  • Next meetings to focus on helping each others projects.

Discussion of Pig Share project:

Jonathan’s “pig share” project was a good example. A farmer in Frensham will allow people to ‘sponsor’ a pig which they can then visit.

Jonathan wasn’t there tonight to discuss the project further, but it is in line with what Transition wants to achieve and cooperation would hopefully be mutually beneficial.


What it is: Get other organisations to say they are “Part of or supporting” TTF.

Why: Increase our visibility and participation.

What would we call this? “Approval”? “Proscription”?
Is it more about Liaison, cooperate with, partnering with, …


Would we want them to say that they are committed to sustainable XYZ, or Transition Values/priorities?

Would we ‘approve’ them, put info about them on our website?


We visit them, explain what Transition is about. They then buy in to some form of common goals. Implies we would need to define meaningful goals.

  • Sustainability, recycling, conservation, community, local, act local/think global.
  • Need to be able to say in a paragraph what we stand for. Where we fit within all the other things that are going on.

“Transition Farnham is a service organisation to people who are doing stuff. Branding a concept and pushing ideas out to help other people achieve something. Marketing.”
Is that right?

Is it like the “Best of Farnham” scheme? No, not really.

Is it like Marios’ “Unchained” concept? Not quite.

Is it about TTF supporting local businesses. Partly. (But some local businesses still import stuff from abroad.)

Would we want to boycott organisations that did not do what we wanted (eg  stores that have their doors open when it’s -2 degrees centigrade outside? ) ???

A first pass for discussion:

  1. We meet them and tell them our story
  2. We tell them our vision of what we want instead
  3. We outline the likely implications for their organisation
  4. They say they are interested.
  5. They agree to promote us, in return for us  promote them. Cross-promotion.
  6. We share/promote projects over time. We become a centre for cross-pollination within Farnham



Have some vision meetings.

Open space visioning meetings.

Invite “everybody in Farnham”.

Use gym at the school. (Just for the school??)

“Tell us your dreams.” strapline.

Would need to combine with the meetings in the ‘Branding’ project. Talk to groups. Visioning becomes a service we can offer them. Plus/building towards visioning for the whole town.


Lots being thrown away. Is there anything useful we could do with the things being thrown away?


Pam has been carrying out some market research.

Older people don’t like to use the Hopper because their bus pass is free (even though the service isn’t very good).

Young people feel that if something could be provided that helped them cope with prams then that would be good.

What about asking people to sign up to give lifts? Yes, but dangers of getting into car with strangers? Need for a badge to show that it was safe? Need for CRB vetting very important??

Or set up some kind of ‘dial a lift’ phone number or email group or website?

But can be very time-critical.

And what routes would it operate on?

Are there any examples of things being done elsewhere that we could copy?

And idea for further discussion in the future.


What: Bishops Meadow trust is organising a festival for children in September 2011, to raise money to help buy the Water Meadows.

Why Important for us: To keep the land (grazing) and build community and biodiversity.

They want 200 stalls, each with 2 people.

Looking to sell tickets for £35/family for the day.

150 ideas for stalls so far.

Volunteers need to choose a stall, promise to turn up on the day, turn up and run it. Plus commit to two days training beforehand.

Finn will add a link to their website to our website and newsletter, if Ian provides the necessary information.

They meet on Wednesdays. We could go along to ask questions before we promoted it further? EG What will they do to clean up the meadows? How realistic is the idea, compared with the carnival and the fireworks? Could they charge people to clean out the ditches?

The organisers are also planning a “Bairns Night” on January 25th.


Why important: Promote liaison between food growers in the area. Promote awareness amongst populace.

What: Farnham Food Growers Directory & Liaison.

Joyce will be resurrecting this important project shortly.


What it is: Natural history walks around Farnham. Had first one in October. Wants to contact UCA and see if he can advertise it there and at Farnham College.

Why it matters: Gets people involve with wild spaces and encourages people to value those wild areas, and possibly wild food.

Could do a course for U3A as well? “How to prepare wild food?”

Could talk to Gayle re cooperation with Farnham Adult Education Centre?

(Joyce could suggest a special meeting on TTF/FLF to U3A.)

Could do walks for Schools? Or train teachers to do them?

Surrey Food Links Partnership might provide information, and/or promotion.

The project is fully-defined once it has: Dates, Places, Topics, How we will communicate to which Groups of people.

Are others across Surrey (including the County Council) doing similar things? Could we learn from them? Could they advertise/promote/fund us?

David will create separate Project Website, linked from TTF site.


Ruth wondered how many plots of land there are around Farnham not being used, that could be used to grow food. Bysh pointed out that these were interstitial spaces, a project that has been on hold since he moved into his yurt.

Guerrilla gardening could be a way to use them?

An idea for future discussion perhaps.

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