22 January – Big Green Conversation. “Trees Are the Key” documentary film

“Trees Are the Key” is an inspirational 40-minute documentary narrated by Kate Winslet. It was made in conjunction with The Word Forest Organisation, a Dorset charity that plants trees, builds classrooms and facilitates education in rural Kenya. It also shines a spotlight on the women’s empowerment group, Mothers of the Forest. It tells the story of why we need to plant more trees in the tropics and why we need to support the people who are taking care of the forests.

The documentary will be followed by discussion, including a focus on Herefordshire’s tree wardens and the FoE Double Tree Cover campaign.

7.30pm – 9.30pm, The Speakeasy Bar, The Left Bank Village, Hereford.

If you can’t make it to the Conversation, you can watch the film on-line here

11 December – Big Green Conversation: Housing and the upcoming Herefordshire Core Strategy Review CHANGE OF DATE from 27 November

at 7.30pm at Left Bank Hereford

Herefordshire Council is re-writing its core strategy (Local Plan) . What should it say about housing? A discussion evening organised in association with the Herefordshire Centre for Community Led Housing. Council Cabinet members and officers are expected to attend.

18 September – Cultural Emergence Discussion

Cultural Emergence is a toolkit designed to create cultures of personal leadership, collective intelligence and planetary care. Developed by Looby Macnamara in collaboration with other global visionaries, join Looby to find out how Cultural Emergence can support you in creating regenerative cultures in your own life and relationship, as well as how it can ripple out into the world. Discover a message of hope and tools for empowerment.
Looby Macnamara is an experienced permaculture teacher, author and designer, and runs Applewood Permaculture Centre in North Herefordshire. Looby is running a weekend ACE – Activating Cultural Emergence course 4-6th Oct at Applewood Permaculture Centre. And you can find out more with an online free/pay as you wish Cultural Emergence taster course. www.applewoodcourses.com 

7.30 pm at Hereford Left Bank. Organised by Herefordshire Green Network.

25 September – talk by Mark E Thomas: How Creating Economic Opportunity for Millennials Will Help Save the Environment

Mark E Thomas, author of the book 99%: Mass Impoverishment and How We Can End It, will talk about why we are now looking at the first generation in living memory that can expect to be poorer than their parents. This is mass impoverishment in action and the result of political choices rather than cast-iron laws of economics. He will show how we got into this mess, and how we can get out and he will show that the five key actions that we need to end mass impoverishment are precisely those we need to tackle climate change. After the presentation, there will be a discussion and a workshop for participants. The evening will conclude with an opportunity for book signing at 9:30 pm.

Starts 7.30pm at Hereford Left Bank. A Big Green Conversation, organised by Herefordshire Green Party


Prime Minister’s actions appalling, says Ellie Chowns

From Hereford Times 4 September 2019

“We live in extraordinary political times. This is a crisis on a scale not seen for decades. And the most extraordinary thing of all? This is an entirely manufactured crisis, homegrown in Britain, created by the actions of a handful of people – Boris Johnson chief among them.

Last week Johnson took the unprecedented step of announcing the suspension of Parliament – a move that rightly outraged the majority of MPs and citizens. No wonder so many thousands took to the streets across the country, including here in Herefordshire, to defend our Parliamentary democracy and stop the coup. It was indeed a coup, albeit without ‘tanks on the lawns’ – it was a brazen, autocratic attempt to seize power from elected representatives, by a prime minister with a wafer thin majority.

It was indefensible and appalling – and those are the words of a Conservative MP!

Johnson has been gambling recklessly all along. He gambled that he could pretend the blockage was the EU, when the truth is that his problem is the division within his own party. He gambled that he could side with the Brexiteer hardliners and force moderates to give up. He gambled with the country’s future by threatening ‘no deal’ – a strategy of catastrophic self harm. Johnson’s gambles have backfired spectacularly.

All other parties have been absolutely united in opposing Johnson’s attempt to silence debate – and a significant number of brave Conservatives have put principle before party, and country before personal interest.This week, Johnson not only lost his party’s majority in the House; he lost his very first vote as PM, and all shreds of credibility as a leader.

There is another way forward. As a country, we have been deeply damaged by this Brexit mess. It’s high time we started looking for common ground and rebuilding our broken politics. That’s a task that goes way beyond Brexit – but first we do indeed need to resolve Brexit.

I believe we are better off in the EU, but I recognise that a narrow majority wanted to leave, more than three years ago now. So what we need now is a compromise agreement – the best possible withdrawal deal – which should then be put to the people for the final say.

I would of course campaign, as I have always done, to remain.

Because Brexit was never our core problem. Membership of the EU costs less than one per cent of government spending. Brexit has left us no time to think about the other 99% of government business – vitally important things like the NHS, schools, social care, and tackling the climate crisis.

Brexit would make things worse in all those areas. We are quite literally fiddling while the planet burns.

Fundamentally the Brexit mess has shown just how broken our political system is. Our democracy is creaking at the seams, in desperate need of fixing.

Here are three positive ideas for starters: change the electoral system so that all votes count equally, abolish the unelected House of Lords, and clean up politics by removing the influence of dirty money. A fairer, cleaner, more grown-up politics would encourage our leaders to act in the long-term interest of the country as a whole, and seek common ground rather than taking extreme positions.

It would enable us to re-set our relationship with the European Union, and finally turn our attention to other things that really matter – starting with the climate emergency.”

26 September – presentation on charity supporting families bereaved in Palestine/Israel

7.30pm at the Steiner Academy, Much Dewchurch: Sana Knaneh, current Development Director of the UK charity Friends of the Bereaved Families Forum will give a presentation about the charity’s work supporting bereaved families across the Palestinian/Israeli divide.

Today, more than 600 families from both sides of the divide, all of whom have lost family members in the conflict, have chosen to reach out to the other side and work together for peace and reconciliation. This work has been building since 1994 when The Parent’s Circle- Families Forum was first formed and the UK charity exists to raise funds to support them in their on-going work of raising public awareness in Israel and abroad and developing educational and advocacy projects that ‘foster dialogue and empathy towards both Israelis and Palestinians’.

This is important and very challenging work: those involved are seeking to transform the pain of their anger, grief and loss into a catalyst for peace, reconciliation and tolerance. In January, they faced the loss of their US aid which the Trump Administration decided to cut, putting at risk two key peace-building projects the success and importance of which Sana will explain. So, though there’s no charge for the presentation, please consider giving a generous donation.

Sana is a Palestinian citizen of Israel currently based in London. She holds an M.A. in International Relations from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and a Master’s degree in International Strategy and Diplomacy from the LSE. She’s a certified peace and conflict resolution facilitator and is also a researcher at the Mitvim – the Israeli Institute for Regional Foreign policies and focuses on the role of the Palestinian citizens of Israel in foreign affairs.

Contact David (Donaldson) daviddon@myphone.coop

29 September – Walk and tea with Kate & Paul Lack at Whitbourne near Bromyard.

A scenic route along the River Teme, with Kate telling us a little bit about the history of farming and landscape use in this area. (She is currently writing a book about the history of Herefordshire farmers and farming from earliest times).

Contributions of cake very welcome!

Follow parking signs and meet at 2.30pm at Colbridge Cottage, Whitbourne WR6 5RT. tel. 01886 821978

All walks, bike rides, teas etc. are fundraisers for the Green Party, as well as being pleasant social occasions, and we suggest a minimum contribution of £3.00. Children free.

If coming by car please try to share transport where possible. Non-members are very welcome. We are very grateful to those who kindly host these events. Could you host a walk and tea or other social/fundraising event? If so, please ring 01568 610955 or email folley.farm@btinternet.com

18 September – Talk on “Confronting the Finance Curse” by Tax Justice Network

Summary of the event

The wealthy are getting richer at the expense of the rest of us. Let John Christensen help you see behind the veil of secrecy and complexity which has been constructed to stop us seeing this outrage. The speaker is Chair of the Board of the Tax Justice Network, which is an expert-led network of economists, finance specialists, lawyers, and others, who work with civil society to expose the corruption of tax havens and the economic and social damage they cause.

Doors open at 7:00 p.m. Talk starts at 7:30 p.m.

Venue: The Malvern Cube

The event is free but voluntary contributions at the door will be welcomed.  Early booking is recommended – register here

8 August – Hereford Peace Council commemoration of the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki

On Thursday 8th August, at 12 noon, members of Hereford Peace Council will commemorate the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, in August, 1945.

The commemoration will take place by the cherry tree in Hereford crematorium.

Sebastian Bowen, Chairman of Herefordshire Council; Kath Hey the Mayor of Hereford, accompanied by the Junior Mayor; Felicity Norman, Deputy Leader of Herefordshire Council; and Clive Thomas, Mayor of Leominster, will attend and say a few words.

The Bishop of Hereford, Ellie Chowns, MEP, and Jesse Norman MP have sent supportive messages, which will be read. Members of the Peace Council and friends will contribute with readings and thoughts.

We shall send a message of Peace, and the hope that such horrific slaughter will never be repeated.

Everyone is welcome to join.

For further information, contact Jenny, on 01547 540 748 or 07711 788 506

Petition Government to declare a climate emergency

A Green Party petition is now online here . Please sign and share.

Secondly, an Early Day Motion on climate emergency has been tabled by Caroline Lucas. At the time of writing, 50 MPs have signed EDM2177 which says:

That this House notes the stark warning from the world’s scientific community that there are just 12 years left to prevent 1.5 degrees warming; further notes that warming beyond 1.5 degrees represents a threat to the future of humanity, and that even warming limited to that level will wreak havoc upon the livelihoods of countless people across the world; acknowledges that the world is now experiencing a climate emergency and that an urgent and rapid global response is now necessary; welcomes the fact that solutions to the climate crisis are widely available including renewable technology, sustainable transport options and zero-carbon buildings; supports the decisions by more than 40 local authorities to pass motions declaring a climate emergency and setting net zero carbon emissions targets for their local areas; and calls on the Government to declare a climate emergency and to release the necessary funding, including to local authorities, to enact a green new deal that would rapidly decarbonise the entire UK economy.

Please write/email your MP asking them to sign the EDM:

Jesse Norman jesse.norman.mp@parliament.uk

Bill Wiggin officeofbillwigginmp@parliament.uk

Many Thanks

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