Current projects

Chesham Community Assembly

Talking about the Climate Emergency

Formed by one of our core members, Vicki, to support Chesham Town Council’s Action Plan to tackle the Climate and Ecological Emergency locally, Chesham’s Community Assembly aims to stimulate debate and discussions around related topics facing our community at the moment.

What is a Community Assembly? See below

First assembly – See results here

Second Community Assembly in Chesham – Done!

“What might we do, to reduce water consumption around Chesham?”

“What might we do, to reduce the impacts of flooding around Chesham?”

The results of the second assembly are in!

What a great session!  Experts, Allen Beechey (Chiltern Chalk Streams Project) and Paul Jennings (River Chess Association), introduced the assembly topics.  They shared the importance of considering water and flooding locally, spoke about initiatives already happening and shared potential solutions for the community to take forward.

Everyone who came was keen to contribute and there were plenty of ideas shared.

Five projects came out of the assembly:

  1. Water reduction education team (community, schools and practical workshops, could include research into grey water systems)
  2. Lobbying for new build regulations, particularly grey water requirements, could also think about retrofit
  3. Mass community purchase and installation of water butts
  4. Flooding lobbying group (EA, Thames, Bucks) re Sustainable Drainage systems (SuDS), perhaps join master planning group
  5. Flooding education group (public and authorities) e.g. benefits of permeable surfaces, consciousness of the problem, raising awareness, gathering data, better farming practices

You can see the summary and comments from the assembly groups here:

You can see feedback from those who attended here Note: Score 1 = ‘Strongly Disagree’, Score 5 = ‘Strongly Agree’

Get Involved

If you would like to be involved in any of these projects, please contact action@sustainablechesham.org.uk and we will put you in touch with the group co-ordinator.

If you are part of a minority group in Chesham, we are keen to hear from you.  Our aim is to truly represent the Chesham demographic in these assemblies, so we get to hear everyone’s voice and tap into the wisdom of the community.

 What next – Future Assemblies?

We are keen to support the projects from this assembly and see this strengthen and grow.

In parallel we are working on a series of assemblies for 2021/22 to discuss other environmentally related topics like transport, air pollution, rewilding, energy and buildings

Watch this space for more information!  Please join us, we would love to hear your views.

 

What is a Community Assembly?

 A Community Assembly is a structured and facilitated space where a group of people can come to together to explore issues and generate solutions, with no one person or group dominating. It is an effective way of harnessing the collective wisdom of the crowd.

 Why a Community Assembly?

We are hearing more and more about the climate and ecological emergency and the need for immediate global action. It can leave us feeling powerless and like our actions are negligible in the global scheme of things, but we do have an influence over our local environment.

With the climate undoubtedly changing, there is much talk about reducing our emissions, however, we should also be looking at increasing our resilience to the impacts we are likely to face, as a result of this changing climate.

Discussing these topics at a community level, brings together experts in the area and those with an interest in making things work, i.e. the people who live and work in the community.

We might want to see a local energy supply, community growing, installation of natural flood defences, tree planting or something else, but whatever it is, it will be what the community thinks is needed, what the community thinks will work and what the community are prepared to invest time in implementing and maintaining.

What are our aims?

Our main aims are to;

  • Start (or widen and connect) the conversation around these topics
  • Hear a wide variety of views from people in the community
  • Identify community priorities
  • Spark excitement over and implement solutions
  • Link into existing initiatives and
  • Set up further workshops to explore different topics, identified by the community as a priority.

Initiative supported by:

Chesham, Chesham and District Natural History Society, Chiltern Peace and Justice Group, Fairtrade Chesham, Chesham in Bloom, XR Chesham