Wednesday, 24 February 2010

Discussions With Loughborough University

A thought provoking meeting with the Centre for Renewable Energy Systems Technology (CREST) at Loughborough University today.  Clearly there is much in this for academics to use as research, but the focus comes down to funding and relevance to specialist fields.  I am due to have further discussions with the University's Sustainability Research School to get their take on it.
Talking of funding, the very helpful sustainability team at NW Leicestershire council have listed Ashby 2020 as on of 10 projects to be supported by a Knowledge Tranfer Partnership study by Dr Andrew Reeves for two years. Details of how this will work in practice are still being worked out, but it seems we will get Dr Reeves for around 20 days per year to study and/or advise on the 2020 initiative - fantastic!

Monday, 22 February 2010

Two Very Positive Meetings

Two great meetings today - firstly with Fishers Solicitors in Ashby who have graciously and enthusiastically agreed to act as the main legal representatives for the whole initiative.  This will mean professional help in setting up the charitable trust and in negotiating contracts when we have large consensus in the town.  With Fishers' help we should have huge group-buying capability meaning everyone benefits by being sustainable!

The second very positive meeting was with KP/United Biscuits who are very enthused by the project.  They will be promoting our 15 April launch event at their own environmental awareness day this Wednesday, and are clearly making inroads into their own sustainability efforts.  I understand that they have reduced waste to the extent that no skip is required this month for landfill - an awesome achievement considering the scale of output at KP.  Well done all!

Tuesday, 16 February 2010

Joining the Online Community

Already we have started to see interest from other community interest groups including Ibstock does Climate Change the Low Carbon Communities Network and Lets go Local - we haven't even started publicity yet!  Thanks for showing interest so early everyone.

Once the web site is up and running (hopefully Wed night now), we can get the message out there and start the legal process of forming a charitable trust so that we can receive any available funding.  I'm hoping that someone will step forward shortly and offer to take us through this.

Carl Benfield

Monday, 15 February 2010

Ashby 2020 Begins

After a number of months of discussion and planning, we finally seem to be taking off.  Everyone I speak to about Ashby 2020 seems very excited by the idea - I just hope this is reflected in the enthusiasm for the launch event on 15th April 2010 at Ivanhoe College.

Socius have very kindly agreed to do all the marketing and branding, and have already produced a fantastic logo - here is the final draft (some tweaks may yet occur):
Funky Zebra events  immediately agreed to run the launch event on 15 April which will help set the tone of this being a coordinated and effective initiative, but one that is led by the community.  Thanks guys.

Carl Benfield