Transition Forest Row

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Low Carbon Community Challenge


Low Carbon Community Challenge

Responding to the Low Carbon Community Challenge

Location: Forest Row
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Latest Activity: Sep 10, 2015

Discussion Forum

Project Ideas

Started by Mike Grenville. Last reply by David Jonas Oct 18, 2009. 2 Replies

LCCC IDEAS from first meeting 12th October 2009VILLAGE HALL UPGRADE~ currently very energy inefficient & ripe for conversion~ demonstrable carbon savings~ renewable energy~ listed building~ old…Continue

Tags: fund, government, project, carbon

Comment Wall

Comment by tony lewin on October 14, 2009 at 9:18
Minutes from Monday's meeting coming soon!

Comment by Paul Brown on October 14, 2009 at 10:13
In order to make achievable carbon footprint reductions to the Village Hall in the time frame required by the Phase 1 LCCC passive (eg insulation) measures it might be achievable but active measures like a renewable energy heating system would be very challenging unless a lot of solid traceable preparatory work (with suppliers) has already been done.

I am of the view that the promotion of simple energy saving measures, mainly insulation to the wider FR community is the low hanging fruit. That is someting that is achievable.

Comment by Alan on October 14, 2009 at 19:22
I hear what you say Paul but to be honest don't imagine that insulation would be seen as a very inspirational project to justify this funding unless we can find a particularly innovative way of promoting it - say a blanket across the village and getting 100% participation or some really high target. Alan
Comment by Mike Grenville on October 18, 2009 at 10:50
Green Communities, part of the Energy Savings Trust, offers support for communities wanting to take on projects such as this.

Undertaking a community scale renewable energy project
Comment by tony lewin on October 18, 2009 at 21:28
Here are the minutes from last Monday's meeting. Please have a read-through (it's not that long!) with a special view to finding ways of combining several of the proposed schemes to find synergies.
LCCC group Oct 12.doc
Comment by tony lewin on October 18, 2009 at 21:29
here are the minutes pasted in in case the upload doesn't work


(suggestions for a better name please!)

Minutes of first meeting, Oct 12th in the Brambletye

Present: Charlene Collison (facilitator), Susie Miller, David Jonas, Suzanne Hillen, Annette Armstrong Oliver Greenwood, Anna Lydford, Paul brown, Vivien Hill, Brad Scott, Alan Potter, Patrick Shaw, Tony Lewin (Minutes), Mike Grenville, Steve Briault.

1. Charlene summarised the main points of the DECC document, issued late September, as follows:-
• a significant shift in government thinking towards a more open approach, one with more community involvement
• an incentive for people to get talking, hook up across different sectors of the community and get involved
• 20 communities will be selected as “test cases” – the projects will be studied and analysed
• Up to £500,000 will be available to successful projects
• The principal objective is to develop community leadership in reducing carbon emissions
• Communities of between 1000 and 20,000 population will be eligible, though there appears to be considerable flexibility in this and other criteria
• The government is seeking a broad mix of different projects. This could work to our advantage
• The funding will be divided between eight 'first-mover' projects and twelve second-mover ones. There seems to be some confusion between the exact differences between the two – Charlene will seek to clarify the exact position.
• Interest needs to be registered by October 28th; this includes stating whether the submission is for phase 1 or 2. However, unsuccessful Phase 1 applicants can resubmit for Phase 2
• The stated timings give us less than two or three months to prepare

2. Some points from the discussion that followed:
• Alan Potter: priority should be given to schemes focusing on carbon reduction.
• David Jonas had studied the material closely but was still not clear on the stipulations as to when and how the award money had to be spent. A proportion of the capital expenditure might have to be made this financial year. The conditions for the second mover applications were not so onerous.
• Charlene said we should be looking for those applications with real energy behind them.
• Mike Grenville suggested going for Phase 1 as we are better prepared than others might be. The Forest Row in Transition document gives us a head start
• Paul Brown said that the Energy Group had identified a lot of key people locally who were prepared to form a 'resource box' of energy expertise. This group was looking for a flagship project.
• Charlene summarised her understanding of the eligibility criteria, emphasising the research dimension of the scheme (i.e. that we will need to provide data streams to show that it is successful) and that it should integrate different groups within the community and enjoy the support of local government organisations. The importance of promoting behaviour change – i.e. education – was also stressed.
• David Jonas, as a member of Wealden District Council, said that there was a good chance of support from Wealden for a suitable application.
• Mike Grenville said that the FRPC had been informed of the scheme in an open email from Rowena Moore.

3. The meeting divided into three groups to brainstorm possible ideas to take forward. The principal suggestions included:
• A masterplan for 90 houses in a sustainable development. This would be positive for the community and satisfy Wealden's development plan. Designed-in renewable energy sources could also provide power for some existing homes in the community.
• Retrofitting existing houses with insulation and other measures: 1700 homes at £170 to £200 per home would still leave a substantial surplus
• A transport scheme involving a car club, a bike hire/share scheme and the provision of folding bikes for commuters to London
• A home delivery service linking local farms and providers to the community
• The refurbishment of the village hall to modern energy-efficiency standards
• An electric car scheme supplied by local renewable energy
• The installation of further woodchip boilers in public buildings in the village
• A solar PV scheme, possibly in the two business parks, to provide electricity and income, which could then be used to promote behaviour change
• The provision of cycle lanes to all schools, linked to an incentive scheme aimed at getting young people to cycle. This could be in the form of a discount card obtained once the cyclist had been trained to ride the school route safely.

4. It was felt too early to make any decisions on which scheme(s) to take forward; there was some discussion on whether we should go for a smaller, more self-contained project that could be easily completed, or whether a larger and more ambitious scheme might be more attractive to the Challenge's officials.
David Jonas said that a quick start could be made on an insulation programme, so there was no reason why we could not go for Phase 1.
Vivien Hill said the village hall upgrade was ready to roll.
Other groups who should be included or kept informed of our activities are the FRPCC, Emerson College, the schools, the Community Liaison Group, and the farms co-ops.

5. An attendance list was circulated where members could indicate whether they wished to be part of a steering group, or to be a participant member
Next week's meeting (Oct 19th, 8pm in the Brambletye) will make the decisions necessary for the initial submission of interest to the government.
The meeting concluded on time at 10pm.
Comment by David Jonas on October 28, 2009 at 7:57
Here are the minutes from 19th Oct 09 prepared by David Brett:

Minutes of first meeting, Oct 19th in the Brambletye (NEXT MEETING 2nd Nov at Bram)
Present: David Brett, Paul Brown, Mike Grenville, Vivien Hill, David Jonas, Tony Lewin, Alan Potter, Patrick Shaw, Brocas Walton.

Interest in scheme to be registered by 28th October.
Phase 1 application deadline 27th October
Phase 1 results to be announced 21st December.

The scheme was intended for grass roots communities - Most local authorities were not geared up to respond within the tight timescales; Wealden District Council has already declined to apply for this reason.

What IS deliverable: Insulation
• Most important and effective
• Could be done quickly
• Cf Kirklees - there had been 50% take-up
• For the grant of £0.5M at least half of FR housing stock (880 houses x circa £450 each) could have loft insulation installed and £100,000 would remain for other projects.

• Clearing the loft
• Providing temporary storage.

There was discussion about how to use the remaining £100,000. Split between The Village Hall and the Community Centre?
The initial expression of interest was quite easy; the follow up application would need more work and would need a dedicated team.
It was suggested that energy savings from the insulation could be monitored, and people encouraged to pay back into the scheme based on their savings, to be used in further projects.
It was noted that one condition of the scheme was that any project should foster behaviour change.
The scheme needed communities to provide 2 years historical data on energy consumption: it was thought that Nia has information on Forest Row energy and water use.
It was suggested that one of the working groups should investigate the materials used in insulation, with a view to using the most sustainable and ecological ones.

Village Hall: The plan would be for a new more energy efficient boiler, internal insulation, draft proofing and double glazing. A new boiler would cost £3,000-£4,000.

After some discussion, it was thought that it would probably not be appropriate to include the Community Centre in this scheme at this time as the Parish Council’s time scales would not allow a decision in time, and the PC may consider any projects for the Community Centre to be their responsibility. However it would be a good idea to make a presentation to the PC about any application.

MG said the Transition Forest Row constitution needed tightening up; he would look into this.

TL and DJ drew up tasks and volunteers as below:


Mike Grenville will notify the Dept of Enterprise, Trade and Investment of TFR’s intention to apply for Phase 1 “First Mover” funding.
It was agreed to subdivide the project into the following topics in the lead up to the application deadline (27th November 2009), with the following volunteers pledging to make substantial progress on each topic before the next meeting:
Topic Volunteers
Village Hall Proposal Vivien Hill, Brad Scott
Specification & Tender David Jonas, Paul Brown, (Brocas Walton)
TFR Constitution Mike Grenville & Patrick Shaw
Grant Application Form Alan Potter, Brocas Walton

Mike Grenville will set up a new email work group specifically for this group to circulate progress reports and communicate ideas
Next meeting scheduled for Monday 2nd November at 8pm at the Brambletye.
All volunteers encouraged to circulate progress reports before the next meeting, particularly Vivien and Brad who will not be able to attend because it clashes with the Village Hall Management Committee meeting.
Comment by Nir on November 3, 2009 at 17:59
Hello all,

Thank you for the meeting last night. I have been following the process from very far away and now I know a bit more. I think the ideas that came yesterday are very good particularly the thermal imaging. This can really create a tailor made solution to every house which is miles better than blanket insulating everything.
I was thinking how Emerson College can join the application? The work which needs to be done at Emerson is largely to insulate Pixton.
Pixton urgently need work done on it. It is a listed house and therefore very difficult to 'green' as there are many restrictions. In this case it can be used as a case study on insulating and improving such properties. This will give an opportunity for innovation and creative thinking on solving a very serious problem. There are many large listed buildings in the UK which need to be insulated. Their inefficiency is staggering.
Yes we are jumping here on the wagon. Adding Pixton and Emerson may add to the bid, make it more versatile and exciting. As I said last night I wasn't very involved in the process and came last night mostly to listen. I really leave it up to you, as you have done the hard work. If there is a possibility let me know what is needed and I'll do my best to gather the necessary information.
Comment by tony lewin on November 6, 2009 at 17:13
very good article from the EU today, with lots of useful links too. I will have a closer look and post some key points.

Comment by Charlene Collison on November 9, 2009 at 12:07
Great to see these ideas that have taken shape. Having had to miss the last 2 meetings I'm a bit out of the loop but would like to help in the shaping up of the ideas into the final proposal, particularly in the area of community engagement and behaviour change. Alan and Bro I understand are carrying the mandate for shaping the proposal; what is the best way for me to join your conversation to add some ideas?

Best regards


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