Farewell, Bethia ….

Dear Transitioners

The Climate Emergency news continues to roll in, some good, some bad.  While on the one hand the Government announced that the UK will set a new legally binding target to reach net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, on the same day they gave the go ahead to a third runway at Heathrow.  Do they not understand what net zero means?  It means no more airport expansion, no fracking, no new gas or oil, no new roads.  It means doubling tree cover in the UK, and building cleaner energy and transport systems.

We continue to support Extinction Rebellion (with local groups on Abergavenny and Hereford) and the Youth Strikes to keep public awareness in the front line.  Please let us know if you want contact details for these groups.  The County Council will be holding a meeting on 1 August to update us on their progress with actions – details below, and Monmouth remains committed to action through the new group, ACE (Action on Climate Emergency) Monmouth.  Representatives from 21 local groups attended the first meeting last month with lively discussion and many ideas on projects.  We will start to develop these ideas into actions at the next meeting on Thursday 18 July.  Drop in starting at 6pm, meeting to start at 7pm at Bridges Community Centre.  Further details to follow.

We end on a sad note however.  Bethia Smith, one of our founder members, died last week.  Bethia was our first Treasurer and for ten years she was our main fundraiser, ran all of our coffee mornings and did much more besides.  She was always the stalwart, the quiet one, always the one that put her hand up to say ‘yes, I can do that’ – and you were confident that it would be done competently and with no fuss.  Her illness prevented her from active participation for the past two years but she remained interested in all that we were doing.  We owe her a great debt.  Her funeral will be at the Forest of Dean Crematorium at 12.30 on Tuesday 9 July followed by refreshments at Monmouth Priory.  Please contact vivienmitchell@yahoo.co.uk if you can offer or need a car share.

But the show goes on.  Here are some dates for your diaries:-

XR Action at Abergavenny Barclays:  Saturday 6 July.  More details here.

Members’ Meeting:  Tuesday 9 July, 7.30 till 9pm at Claypatch Woods, Wyesham – but the Monmouth Community Choir plans to give their vocal chords a whirl in the woods – warm up starting at 6.30 so you might like to come earlier.  The Wyesham Community Woodland Group will be showcasing their work so this should be a fun meeting.  Wear suitable footwear and bring warm layers.  You might also like to bring drinks and finger food to share.

Extinction Rebellion Planning Meeting:  Tuesday 9 July, 7pm at the King’s Arms, Abergavenny – to plan the action campaign for the summer months

XR Non Violent Direct Action Training:  Friday 12 July, 6pm-9pm at Abergavenny Community Centre.  More details here

Walk + Talk at Old Lands – with ecologist Sam Bosanquet:  Saturday 13 July – see Old Lands on Facebook for further details of this three hour walk through fields and parkland where more than 3000 different species have been recorded.  Places limited, booking essential

Claypatch Woods Fun Day:  Sunday 14 July, 10 am – loads of fun for all the family – bring a picnic and enjoy!

XR ‘Operation Mushroom’:  15 to 19 July:  Operation Mushroom will take place in five cities across the UK including Cardiff (15 to 17 July).  This will be the biggest action yet seen in Wales and will aim to ensure that all Governments and Councils act.  We have had enough talk!  Basically this will be a London-style event holding an area round Castle Street for maximum effect and publicity.  The theme is the Canary – a warning sign of catastrophe.  Further information and sign up at

https://actionnetwork.org/forms/sign-up-for-operation-mushroom-15th-19th-july.  A huge amount of work is involved and all help is welcome.  Please contact xrabergavenny@gmail.com to be kept up to date with local information

ACE Monmouth:  Thursday 18 July at Bridges Community Centre:  6pm for drop in, 7pm start to the meeting when we will settle on projects for Climate Emergency Action in Monmouth

Rewilding:  A short video by George Monbiot followed by discussion:  Sunday 21 July, 2pm to 4pm at Rockfield Community Centre.  Bring the children – there is a playground adjacent to the Centre.  More details here

Climate Change Champions:  Thursday 1 August, 6.30 pm at County Hall to review progress on the Climate Emergency Action Plan for the County – all welcome;  contact vivienmitchell@yahoo.co.uk for a car share

Garway Fun Day – Green Living + Plastic Free:  Saturday 24 August – further information nearer the time on the Garway Community Centre Group Facebook page

Viridor Energy from Waste Facility:  Wednesday 28 August:  Minibus transport from Chepstow, Monmouth and Raglan to arrive in Cardiff at 12 noon.  The facility diverts around 95% of residual waste produced in South Wales from land fill;  it takes all of Monmouthshire’s waste for incineration – see https://www.viridor.co.uk/energy/energy-recovery-facilities/cardiff-erf/ for further details.  Places are limited and it is essential to book by contacting hello@gwentenergycic.org.

And the Local Produce Markets:-
Usk – 1st + 3rd Saturdays – 10 till 1
Abergavenny – 4th Thursday – 9.30 to 2.30

We hope to see you before the holiday break, but in any case, have a happy summer!

Vivien Mitchell