So, Waitrose is going to stop handing out single-use unrecyclable coffee cups in the autumn. Should we cheer? – or should we be angry that it has taken a massive public outcry to get them to desist from their irresponsible, antisocial behaviour? Whatever – it’s one small victory in a battle that we shouldn’t have to fight – but it shows what we can do, so please keep up the pressure in whatever way you can!
And that’s what we’re doing with Plastic Free Monmouth. A Steering Group now includes facilitators for action with Monmouth Town Council, local businesses, schools, community spaces + groups, individual/household action, + events – litter picks, stands at events etc. If you want to get involved, contact Anna Hill – firstname.lastname@example.org or via the Plastic Free Monmouth Facebook page. We have decided to use the Surfers Against Sewage toolkit as a framework to achieve Plastic Free Town status by the end of the year – https://www.sas.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/Plastic-Free-Coastlines-Community-Toolkit.pdf.
To get the community involved we will be holding a Public Workshop at the Shire Hall on Thursday 3 May, 6pm for a 6.30 start – please come, + bring your friends + neighbours. This is something for everyone, especially community groups, schools + businesses! We are also working with the County Council + similar groups throughout the county with the aim of being the first Plastic Free County.
The Welsh Government is getting active too + is asking for your help in tackling the problems associated with single-use plastic waste by providing evidence; their document is here: “Tackling the plastic problem: Using the tax system or charges to address single-use plastic waste”. Responses please to ETTanswers@hmtreasury.gsi.gov.uk by 18 May 2018 – + queries via the Welsh Treasury mailbox.
And another bit of cheery local news – in Monmouth you can now get your milk delivered before 9am in glass bottles every Monday, Wednesday + Friday by Raglan Dairy, along with an array of other stuff. Email James Durose – email@example.com – for a price list. Raw milk is likely to be available soon!
In case you think we’ve become a single issue group – we haven’t! There’s considerable, albeit difficult/tortuous progress, with our Food Sense project – let us know if you would like to be added to the email list for agendas/minutes for activities including community lunches, food for children in the school holidays, using waste/excess food, a community fridge – much to do! With RECS, our flood prevention project, the feasibility study is nearing completion + next month we will hold a community consultation on the proposals which are exciting + innovative – even Natural Resources Wales + the County Council are excited, + there will be much for community involvement.
Now here’s the diary for the next few weeks:-
Grosmont Market: Saturday 14 April, 10 to 2 – a special ‘Make Do + Mend’ event – do you have something that needs fixing, a dress that needs altering, a leather bag that needs adjusting, electricals that need a diagnosis? – all this + the usual stalls for fresh veg, craft, antiquities, vintage – + food to eat!
Members’ Meeting: Tuesday 17 April, 7.30 at the Robin Hood – Plastic Free Monmouth, the Monmouthshire Well-Being Plan, food poverty (making progress), flood prevention, woodland management (both going brilliantly), Chippy Playground (showing signs of moving!) + anything else you want to talk about!
Spring Clean Tools Sale: Saturday 28 April starting at 10am – tools from TFSR at The Tools Depot near Gilwern Road, Sawmills, Llangattock NP8 1HW – every imaginable tool, + some you can’t!
Monmouthshire Women in Agriculture 1900-2018: Saturday 28 April, 9.45am to 4.30pm at the Abergavenny Community Centre, Merthyr Road, NP7 5BY – £8 to include lunch + tea – register with firstname.lastname@example.org /01873 855760
Community Canteen: Saturday 28 April, 7 for 7.30 at Holy Trinity Church Hall – a hearty vegetable soup served with a variety of filled tortilla wraps followed by a rainbow fruit salad – in aid of the Abergavenny Arts Festival – book at email@example.com
Plastic Free Monmouth Community Workshop: Thursday 3 May, 6 for 6.30 at the Shire Hall – we want your ideas about what we can do + achieve
River Festival: Friday/Saturday 11/12 May: Full details on the ‘Wye Valley River Festival Monmouth’ Facebook page + in the Beacon nearer the time
Bee Friendly Monmouthshire: Sunday 20 May, 10 to 4 in the Nelson Garden
Gwent Wildlife Trust Open Garden: Coed Cefn, Tregare: Sunday 27 May 2-6 – a beautiful garden with much for children to explore, + Swap Shop for seeds/plants/produce, + Fairtrade tea/coffee, sandwiches + homemade cakes. Transition Monmouth is doing the refreshments – offers of help would be much appreciated – email firstname.lastname@example.org if you can provide a cake, sandwich filling, or help out on the day
And, as ever, there are your Local Produce Markets:-
Grosmont – Saturday 14 April – 10 till 2 – Make Do + Mend, + the usual stalls
Usk – Saturday 21 April – 10 till 1
Abergavenny – Thursday 26 April – 9.30 to 2.30
Usk – Saturday 6 May – 10 till 1
Grosmont – Saturday 13 May – 10 till 2
Usk – Saturday 20 May – 10 till 1
Abergavenny – Thursday 24 May – 9.30 to 2.30
We hope to see you soon, hopefully at the Robin Hood for the Members’ Meeting on Tuesday 17 April + the Plastic Free Monmouth event at the Shire Hall on Thursday 3 May.
Ann Eggleton, Chair
Bryan Miller, Deputy Chair