Wednesday 14th January 2015

HNLC Open Meeting

We had a good turnout from those in Hook Norton and the surrounding areas for the Open Meeting despite the dreadful weather conditions on Wednesday evening. David Newton brought the new Electric Vehicle up to the Visitor centre, but only the bravest of souls ventured out for an inspection. The car will be based at Hook Norton School, where there is a charging point, and will be available for members to use at an initial rate of £20 per day. This will be re-evaluated once we get feedback from members over the coming months.

After reminding everyone present about the recent success that HNLC has had in winning the European ‘Energy Neutral Village’ Award, Tim handed over the reins to Peter Skelton from WRAP (Waste and Resources Action Programme) who went on to provide facts and figures about local waste and recycling as well as giving us food for thought as to how we as a group could inspire the community to improve those figures. It is astonishing how much of our green bin waste could be recycled – in particular our food waste. HNLC hopes to focus on Education and Inspiration to reduce our figures locally with the help of WRAP resources and input from members. www.lovefoodhatewaste.com has some excellent ideas that we hope to work with over the coming months.

HNLC have been approached by Oxford University to take part in their Student Consultancy Scheme, which is run by their Careers Service. Frank Lucas outlined the plan for around 4 students to help to evaluate our progress towards low carbon living and to identify potential new initiatives for HNLC. We hope they will repeat an updated version of the community energy and transport survey undertaken by HNLC in 2010, use the results of that survey to identify opportunities for further energy saving and low carbon energy generation measures in the community, ranked according to level of carbon savings per unit cost, and assess the cost effectiveness (defined as carbon savings per unit cost) of low carbon initiatives being undertaken in similar communities and evaluating their suitability for adoption by HNLC.

HNLC already has extended relationships further afield such as the link with the Low Carbon Hub in Oxford, and now that we have an Electric Vehicle in the Car Club, it has been decided that one of the current vehicles will be based in Chipping Norton, allowing a wider community to take part in a scheme that is running very successfully in Hook Norton. One of the Polos will be based at the Co-op in a marked/allotted space in their new car-park. They have been very helpful with this initiative as have ‘Transition Chipping Norton’. Richard Averill came along as a representative of this group, who will add the Car Club service to their list of groups on their website :
www. transitionchippingnorton.ning.com.
Transition CN are currently concentrating on localising food production and supporting our local farmers and Richard spoke briefly about a new ‘Food Box’ scheme that HNLC hope to support and advertise in the future.

Jem Hayward reported briefly on the progress with the PV installation that is planned for the Brewery buildings, with 13kWp going on the roof of the stables.

Charlie Luxton spoke about a new type of secondary glazing panel that he is involved with the development of, and asked for any interested parties to contact him at charlie@charlieluxton.com if they have the sort of property (such as listed buildings) that might benefit from the fitting of secondary glazing which doesn’t require planning consent. He is in need of volunteers to have the panels fitted (at raw material cost) for the initial production period.

The Visitor Centre once again proved an excellent venue for an interactive meeting, helped along with a pint of excellent ale (with the generous support of James Clarke and Hook Norton Brewery).

We just about managed to conclude business by 9pm although the subjects covered during the evening did inspire discussion in small groups after this.