Events in 2009

Introducing the MK Carbon Reduction Programme     (January)

Ian Byrne, Deputy Director of the National Energy Foundation, gave a presentation on the scope and purpose of the MK Carbon Reduction Programme, launched the previous October.

 

Growing Your Own Food      (February)

After enjoying a cooked breakfast in the conservatory restaurant at Frosts Garden Centre, Woburn Sands, 60 of us listened to Maurice Rust, horticulture specialist, talked about growing vegetables in a variety of containers – including recycled tyres, oil drums, drainpipes and life-expired wheelbarrows.

 

The Great Big Bus’d Up!    (April)

A treasure hunt in which the 29 participants had to complete some crazy tasks by visiting locations in MK using only the bus network.

At the same time everyone was asked to complete a short survey about their bus experience, the results of which were analysed afterwards and a pit into a report which was sent to Milton Keynes Council.

 

RSPB Visit      (June)

Weather conditions were ideal for our evening visit to The Lodge – The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB)’s headquarters at Sandy. After we had eaten our picnic tea in the grounds, Mark Brandon and two RSPB volunteers took us on a guided walk of the heathland area which is currently being restored.

Conifers have been taken out and a scheme of planting of a diverse range of indigenous trees is under way. We were also shown areas where they are trying to establish heathers, grown from seed. At this time of the year the thousands of Hollyhocks provided a spectacular display.    

Against expectations, we didn’t see many birds! But one of the aims of the restoration is to provide an environment which will be more favourable to birdlife, and species they are targeting include the Dartford Warbler, the Woodlark and the Nightjar.

Sandy - group at Iron Age Fort Sandy - heathland with hollyhocks

 

The Age of Stupid     (September)

Forty people came to watch this film, depicting life around 50 years from now. The lead character looks back to the early years of the 21st century and asks why no action was taken in response to the warnings the scientists were issuing.    

 

Saving Energy in the Home       (November)

Ruth Wharton, Microgeneration Officer of the Energy Saving Trust, gave a presentation about the types of technology now available for householders who want to invest in low carbon heating systems, or to generate their own electricity. Ruth explained how the Feed-in tariffs work and what other financial incentives the government offers to householders.