One of the most popular requests that came out of the community events when Totnes, South Hams and Devon councils all declared a climate emergency back in 2018/19, was to bring back Transition Streets. The people of Totnes spoke, we listened, and after last year's pilot of a new programme, we're ready to roll it out to another 25 streets.
Transition Streets officially relaunched last month with a community event at the Methodist Church in Totnes. Everyone was welcome to come along to find out more, hear from past participants and speak to the team of volunteers and facilitators that are working hard to help make it all happen again this year.
This innovative project helps us connect with our neighbours, support each other to reduce our living costs and to cut our carbon footprint by taking practical action together. A number of streets in Totnes have already signed up and a starter pack is available for anyone interested in participating in the project with their neighbours.
Local resident, Fiona Gibbon has already made good progress on her street, Copland Meadow, where a handful of neighbours are actively engaged in getting together to go through the Transition Streets programme.
“Knocking on doors in my street makes me slightly nervous, but once I say I am a neighbour I’ve found people very welcoming. It is good to be able to call with something to offer. It has been a joy to meet new people so nearby. I’ve had several really good conversations and even been invited in to look at the garden of someone I had never met before."
How does it work?
Groups of 6-8 neighbours meet over seven sessions to talk about topics including energy, food, travel and water. We provide a facilitator to help with the first and last sessions and a pack with activities and conversation topics for the rest.
Streets can then create their own projects from garden shares, car shares and babysitting circles to wildlife friendly verges, befrienders and energy saving projects.
What will be the benefit?
The original project in 2010/2011 involved around 500 households which each made average annual savings of £570 on household bills, as well as big reductions in their carbon footprints. These households and streets are invited to participate once again in this newly revised format, which seeks to increase the financial and carbon savings per household.
There is more of an emphasis on community wellbeing in this revised and updated Transition Streets project. Its aim it to strengthen our connections to care for each other and the natural world.
Project manager, Ruth Leonard-Williams says;
“Covid, the climate crisis and rocketing energy, food and other costs mean that we need to support each other now more than ever”.
Register your interest and talk with one of our friendly team about how we can help your
street take part. We will give you a Transition Streets Starter Pack.
Recruit your neighbours
We've produced a short handy guide and flyer that you can post through your neighbours’ doors to help your street get involved.