Minutes TWiG meeting 12/10/16 at White Swan in Greenside

TwiG meeting Wed Oct 12th. 2016 7.30 p.m. at White Swan

Nick (chair), Garry, Lesley (mins), Gwen.

Apols. Mick, Rachel, Laura, Steph, Di,  Sincerest Apols. Gweno. 

1. Minutes from last meeting –  we made some amendments to these during the meeting and the new minutes are now available.

2. Matters arising –

  • Food Fest – numbers attending. Nick has put numbers for all events on an Xcel spreadsheet on Wiggio. 287 people attended the Local food festival plus 50 stallholders and helpers.

  • Hugh’s film and follow-up. Lesley contacted Hugh. He’s had a lot of deadlines but will edit our film soon. Action. Lesley will contact him again in about a month. Steph has heard nothing about the vox pop interviews.

  • Festival beer. Mick reports this took £60. We’re all pleased. Action. Mick to contact Nick re paying the money into our A/c.

  • ReEconomy regional gathering. This is in Mick’s hands, to contact other local groups.

  • Recycling Centre. Mick is now taking the lead on this. Meeting planned with Gateshead Council. Gwen raised the issue of liability if someone gets an item which then causes them some damage.

  • Transport. Meeting with Nexus is on Mick’s to do list.

3. Finance Report. Nick will update the records.

4. Communications – website etc. Nothing to report.

5. Solar array – report back.

Garry is the link person with Green Buildings CIC. There will be a draft report in January or February and we will probably next meet with them in 2nd week in Feb. We discussed consultation including with local councillors. We are likely to get busy with this from Easter onwards.

Ross Weddle had mentioned a funding source from the project in Berwick. They are looking for applications. It seems to be specifically for renewables, so we thought TwiG would not apply at the moment. But we agreed to circulate the info around our mailing list. Action.  Garry to supply info. Lesley to circulate round mailing list. Others to let any groups or projects know. 

6. Food map. 

We looked again at the discussion from last time. This below is the currently agreed criteria.  

1)   serving local people (Essential criterion: Are the majority of your products or services consumed/experienced in the region?) 

2)   Food that is grown, foraged, produced or processed  locally. We would want to see efforts made to use local products wherever possible.  (We took out the part about needing to include local ingredients as it was felt this was too limiting).

3)     supporting the local economy (Is the business locally owned? For example, does the owner live within the region?)Local producers should be small businesses, not part of a national or multinational. Fewer than 250 employees(as definition for SME). Franchises? We weren’t sure.

4)       Being based in or within 5 km of the boundaries of West Gateshead. (We thought that someone who lived close to the border would need to know about providers close to them even if in Northumberland, Durham or rest of Tyne and Wear. This could be more local than the other side of WG.)

These would be the 4 absolute criteria but providers would also be asked to provide information to include in their entry on the following where relevant

[ ] Organic or Certified Organic (provide your number below)

[ ] Free Range

[ ] Not for Profit

[ ] Uses Forms of Renewable Energy

[ ] Local Sourcing of Inputs (e.g. Animal Feed)

[ ] Supports Wildlife (supply detail below)

[ ] Rare Breeds

[ ] Heritage Varieties

[ ] Energy Saving (supply detail below)

[ ] Very Low Greenhouse Gas Emissions (supply detail below)

[ ] Community Supported (supply detail below)

Packaging (avoid plastic/polystyrene)

Recycle as much as possible.

Uses waste products

Fair trade (if from abroad)

MSC certified fish.

Gluten free

We agreed that we would review these criteria 6 months after publication to see how they were working out.

Action plan – once criteria are agreed, to be posted on website, Facebook page, emailing list and entries requested. Gwen to be coordinator and first “judge” of entries. Gweno to post. If we don’t get many entries, we will discuss ringing round local businesses.

7. Next event.

We agreed next event should be a 4 Rs event.  At the solar array meeting we had discussed having this in the Stargate area, but we decided that the community centre there did not have much passing footfall, and it would be better to have it on the main road through Ryton. We decided on a provisional date of Saturday Jan 14thto catch the post – Christmas clear-up etc. We could maybe do soup again? 3 venues suggested and to be checked out. Barmoor Hub (we could possibly do this jointly with them as they have expressed an interest in the past) – Gwen to check; Methodist Church Hall – we think Di has already checked this – Di to let us know; Ryton CIU club in Coop carpark – Lesley to check.  

8. Transition streets

Gwen is still keen to try this in their area. Garry suggested a separate sub-group to support interested people in that area. As a big group we could support with resources, “training” maybe enabling a meeting? Perhaps the first thing is to identify what skills the 3 (Gwen, Gweno, Di) who live in that area feel that they need and how others in the group can help with this? Action. Gwen to organise a meeting at their house November or December. 

9. Community Centre Energy audits (with WEA)?

Lesley has contacted Joy at WEA green branch as they have been doing these. We had mentioned this at our New Year review, so maybe good to work together? No reply yet, but it seems they may not be working in our area anyway? Action. Lesley to contact again to clarify this and say we can help with networking in our area.

10. Anything else from review? We felt that we had addressed the basic issues in the review, although if anyone not at the meeting wants to bring something up, that could be looked at next time.

11. AOB

Mick had suggested a speaker on community biogas at Blackhall Mill Community Centre. Although we thought this would be interesting we felt it would be better as a separate meeting rather than part of a TwiG core meeting as we already have lots to do and it doesn’t relate directly to anything we are doing at the moment. We are happy to have it branded as a “TwiG event if this helps and of course to publicise it.  Action. Lesley to let Mick know.

12. Date of next meeting.

Action Lesley to send out Doodle Poll for best date w/b 14th. November. 

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