Community Climate Action Forum
The Community Climate Action Forum is currently led by the Town Council but it is open to anyone in the community who wants to join with others to take action in Stonehouse to become a carbon neutral community by 2030.
Meetings are held monthly but, due to Coronavirus restrictions, they are currently being conducted virtually. Please contact the Town Council via email (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you would like to take part and you will be given an access code to join in.
The next virtual meeting is scheduled for 8pm on Thursday 2nd September. Please contact the Town Council if you would like to participate.
The Working Group will support the Council to examine environmental implications regarding CO2 emissions alongside legal and financial implications in all the decisions it makes.
The Working Group will seek ways to facilitate our community to reduce CO2 emissions and create resilience to climate change.
The Working Group will research funding available and make recommendations for budget provision for grant schemes from 2020-2021 onwards which will enable carbon-reduction activities in Stonehouse and provide guidance on grant criteria.
The Working Group will provide reports to the Council’s Business Committee to aid decision making.
Here is Stonehouse Town Council’s Climate Emergency declaration and our latest Action Plan STC Climate Action Group Action Plan Please contact us by email email@example.com if you would like to get involved with any of these activities or have other actions that you’d like to suggest and take part in.
Draft 2030 Strategy – Limiting, adapting, recovering and responding in a changing climate
Stroud District Council has ambitious plans for the district to become carbon neutral by 2030. Its draft Strategy https://www.stroud.gov.uk/environment/draft-2030-strategy-limiting-adapting-recovering-and-responding-in-a-changing-climate gives details of how it aims to achieve this. There is a lot of information but they are keen for residents and businesses to give their feedback in this short questionnaire https://www.smartsurvey.co.uk/s/3Y42ER/
Active Travel Consultation results
Following Lockdown – when many people discovered the joy of getting out to walk and cycle locally – the Town Council is exploring ways to make social distancing easier and taking exercise around the town safer.
Individual comments on an interactive map in a recent consultation identified danger spots for pedestrians and cyclists, with a wide range of solutions suggested that would help respondents feel safer to walk and cycle in the area.
As well as numerous comments highlighting the danger to cyclists following the Horsetrough Roundabout ”improvements” (the Town Council is continuing to push the County Council to take urgent action to make this safer), the responses identified places where pavements need re-surfacing and clearing of vegetation, footpaths that might be widened and locations where enforcement of traffic speeds or parking is needed for the safety of pedestrians.
Respondents felt more needs doing to make the Shared Space on the High Street effective and to improve safety around the school entrances on Elm Road, the Co-op and the top of Regent Street.
The consultation also generated some some ideas for strategic projects including developing the railway footbridge to enable employees on the Industrial Estate to pop into the High Street and a cycelway linking Stonehouse to the Cross Keys roundabout on the other side of J12 of the M5.
Around 2/3 of respondents supported temporary measures to reduce traffic speed and /or volumes, with over half supporting making these permanent.
Neil Gibbs, the Town Mayor, said “The Town Council is committed to encouraging more walking and cycling in order to reduce car use in the town. This consultation has given us a useful picture of where we need to prioritise our efforts in order to make residents feel safe to do this; thank you so much to all of you who took time to respond.”
The Town Council has shared the consultation results with County Council Highway Officers and will be working with colleagues to progress some of the ideas that have been suggested.
Community Climate Action Webinar
Participants from five continents joined the Stonehouse Community Climate Action Forum (SCCAF) community conversation last month.
The webinar was organised by SCCAF to inform local residents and the wider audience about what has been happening locally to combat climate change in the town over the last 12 months.
There were 41 viewers from eight countries – the United Kingdom, United States, Colombia, Japan, Latvia, Malaysia, Pakistan and Papua. They heard presentations about:
- the measures being taken by Stroud District Council to become carbon neutral by 2030
- the town council’s campaign for the reinstatement of the train station on the Bristol Road
- tips on how to make homes more energy efficient
- the work of the local Eco Church
- the Stonehouse Community Arboretum
- the environmental focus of Stroud Youth Council
The webinar ended with a lively Q and A session on subjects including electric bikes, planning permission for PV panels and eco-churches joining together across the world.
Councillor John Parker, Chair of SCCAF, said: “There is so much great work being done in Stonehouse to tackle the climate crisis, and this event was a wonderful way to showcase the achievements of our community. The climate emergency is a global problem, so it was particularly good to see such strong interest and positive discussion from all over the world at the event.”
One viewer, Simon Edwards from TiCL, wrote to the audience: “Hi all, from London. I hope you realise what an inspiration Stonehouse is. Active community involvement, tackling local problems and tree planting with projects like the Stonehouse Community Arboretum is a model for the world.”
A recording of the webinar is here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8vzUnSWIUwg