Archive for June, 2013

Join me for Plastic-Free July!

June 30th, 2013

It’s official: disposable plastic is now seriously uncool. Making it in the first place takes a toll on the planet because of the oil required, then the plastic does further damage after we’ve finished with it. Marine scientists have known for decades that plastic rubbish finds its way into our oceans, killing sea life.

A seahorse under the sea near a plastic bag

A seahorse tries to camouflage itself inside a plastic bag. Photo credit: Greenpeace UK

So how do we reduce the amount of plastic we consume in our daily lives? How can we become more mindful about a substance that’s practically everywhere and makes our lives a lot more convenient? More to the point, how do we separate the convenient from the truly essential?

My sister Esther, currently living in Melbourne, has sent me details of an Australian scheme known as Plastic-Free July. The challenge is simple: you attempt to get through July while using as little single-use plastic as possible. By “single-use plastics”, they mean plastic items that are actually designed to be used once before being thrown away: plastic cups, straws, plastic bags and so on.

I’ve decided to give it a go, along with Esther, her partner and a couple of other family members. We start tomorrow (Monday 1st July) and I’ll be blogging about how it goes. Does anybody else want to join in? I’ll be happy to hear about your experiences and share them on the Sustainable Witney blog!

Cyclesport – The Race

June 28th, 2013

Blauw Velokes Koers from buroproper on Vimeo.

BUG Meeting, Cogges

June 26th, 2013

WitneyBUGBadge2014Witney Bike Users Group represents and work for people using cycles in and around Witney.

The group meets at Cogges Farm Cafe, on the first Saturday of the month at 1pm.

Come along and say hello; and even if you can’t make it, it’d be great if you could consider joining WitneyBUG, for only a one-off small fee. The more members WitneyBUG has, the easier it can argue for a sustainable, cycle-friendly local transport policy.

Sign the Bees Billboard, Woolgate

June 22nd, 2013

fotoCome down to the Clocktower by the Woolgate Shopping Centre car park and sign the bees billboard.

This morning 10am to 1pm.


We’re Only Human

June 21st, 2013

We’re Only Human from Amsterdamize on Vimeo.

5 myths about bees – busted

June 20th, 2013

Here we present five common myths about bees… and why they’re wrong!

“Bees make honey…”

» Read more: 5 myths about bees – busted

Sociable Cycling

June 19th, 2013

PotterToThePotteryTwenty five sociable cyclists rode to Aston Pottery on Saturday for coffee, cake and Morris dancing. A tailwind and a fly past were provided for the way back. See the day in pictures.

Check out the events calendar opposite to see what’s in store this weekend, from geeky all the way to easy via the longest continuous cycle path in West Oxon.

And don’t forget it’s a very sociable 2 for 1 at Cogges this week when you and a friend arrive by bike.

Bike Week: Cogges Long Ride

June 19th, 2013

WitneyBUGLogoBadgeNewWP10:30am Sunday 23rd June from Cogges Farm Museum, riding along the traffic free cycle path to Wolvercote for the Farmers’ Market Midsummer Festival. Quiet routes from there through the centre of Oxford with a cafe stop before returning to Cogges. 26 miles, with rests, back by 3pm.

2013: the year of the bee?

June 17th, 2013

We recently gave three ways you can help to save the bees. But why are they in so much danger? And why should it matter to us?

» Read more: 2013: the year of the bee?

Bike Week begins tomorrow!

June 14th, 2013

Are you free tomorrow? If so, you should come along to A Potter to the Pottery. Witney Bike Week kicks off at 10am with a ride for people of all skills and ages, out to Aston Pottery on quiet roads and bridlepaths. Meet at St Mary’s on Church Green for 10; back by 1pm.

» Read more: Bike Week begins tomorrow!

Bike Week: Cogges Short Ride

June 14th, 2013

11am Sunday 23rd June, an easy, quiet, circular route via Ducklington. 4 miles, back by 12.

Children must be accompanied by an adult.


Here to Stay

June 14th, 2013

The Spokesman from dean saffron on Vimeo.

I Like The Way I Bike

June 13th, 2013

RideToAstonSmack bang in the middle of the year already and the festival of all things bike is upon us.

If we’re lucky and the weather doesn’t then I’m afraid to say there are still a few people out there who might try and rain on your parade. They’ll tell you you’re doing it wrong, not wearing the right stuff, sometimes they’ll even single you out as a potential lawbreaker that needs a friendly talking to about the heinous acts you’re going to commit. My advice is ring your bell, smile sweetly and give them a wide berth, we’ve no time for killjoys in Bike Week.

Wear your favourite outfit and ride your favourite bike; summertime is the perfect time to demonstrate riding a bike is as normal as walking the dog or driving the car. If you feel more secure upon your steed sporting hi-viz and a helmet then be our guest – we’re not the fashion police!

» Read more: I Like The Way I Bike

Please spend a few minutes to help save our bees

June 11th, 2013

Last Thursday, Oxford Friends of the Earth came to talk to Sustainable Witney about the problems facing our bee population. The bees need your help, and below are three things you can do, from the quick and simple to the more long term, to support our bee pals.

» Read more: Please spend a few minutes to help save our bees

Resurgence Exhibition & Talk, Asthall Manor

June 10th, 2013

Satish Kumar, the long-term peace and environment activist, is speaking at The Ballroom, Asthall Manor, at 6pm on Saturday, 22nd June. Satish has been editor of Resurgence magazine for 40 years and Resurgence, (now merged with the Ecologist) has been in publication for 45 years. An exhibition celebrating these two anniversaries is on display at Asthall Manor from the 22 – 30 June, and this talk is about the story of Resurgence, and Satish’s involvement with it.

The event is free to all.

Directions to Asthall Manor