Monday 22 July 2019

Getting Involved - and enjoying yourself!

Thanks very much to those thirty or so supporters who came along to our AGM/illustrated talk last Thursday. Afterwards, there was quite a little positive buzz about what Sustainable Hayfield does/aims to achieve.

So we thought we'd identify for you those sub group leads who would be delighted to hear from you, if you're interested in helping realise our ambitions in key areas - and have some fun along the way! Contact the following if you want to get involved in what they try to do:

  • Food group: promoting diverse community foods, cooking skills, and 'growing your own':
  • Transport group: being smarter in how we move around, developing alternatives to wholesale reliance on privately-owned cars, promoting accessible, safe and reliable public transport:
    Roland Strube -
  • Energy group: developing smaller energy footprints at home, work, at play, and building more renewables capacity:
  • Reduce, re-use and recycle group: living more sustainably in our use and choice of raw materials, having less 'stuff', and promoting re-use and recycling capacity:

And, if you've ideas for Apple Day and can help make it better than it is, contact Laurie James at

For all, you'll be sure of a warm welcome!

Friday 19 July 2019

Summer Newsletter

The summer edition of our newsletter is available to download here. In this edition:

  • JOIN US...

Thursday 11 July 2019

Free Illustrated Talk - Improving Your Home and Saving Energy/Carbon, Thursday 18th July

You and your friends are re warmly invited to a free illustrated talk being given at The Royal Hotel, next Thursday, July 18th. The subject is energy efficient retrofitting - or improving - your home, and it's being given by Jonathan Atkinson of Manchester-based Carbon Co-op, who've many years experience of helping people make looked-for improvements to their homes in energy-efficient ways, cutting their energy/carbon emissions along the way, and improving their comfort levels.

Jonathan has entitled his talk 'People Powered Retrofit - Reducing Home Energy Demand', and he'll be providing tips which will interest many of us, whether we have a big project in mind or not. It should be a good occasion.

The talk takes place immediately after the (usually very brief) Sustainable Hayfield AGM, which starts at 7.30p.m., to which, again, everyone is welcome!

Posters are going up around the village, but we thought you'd appreciate this formal invitation. We hope to see you there!

Tuesday 9 July 2019

Helping Others - and Yourselves

After the disappointing news re the community minibus service, here's some upbeat options for making a positive difference locally:

  1. You may - or may not - know there's a 'walking bus' regularly taking youngsters to the primary school, starting at the bus station. This helps cut the number of cars using Swallow House Lane, with all the pollution and risks these create. Recently, Sustainable Hayfield supporters have helped ensure it operates five days a week, but more help is needed. Who knows, we may even get an equivalent bus walking from Little Hayfield! The planned roadworks on Swallow House Lane, when it will be closed to through traffic for months, mean it's even more sensible to have children walking to school, with adult oversight. If you can offer 20 minutes or so on a reasonably regular basis, this will help secure this valuable service. Do contact the school office in the first instance, on 01663 742357 or via They'd love to hear from you!
  2. Ever thought of supporting the local school by becoming a governor? There's a few vacancies for governors arising! Governors help shape the school's future and support the hardworking staff, the better to provide the rich education we want our children to have. The school is currently rated 'good' by Ofsted, who were complimentary about the governors' contributions at the last inspection, and numbers are increasing. If you'd like to know more, please download the literature and make your interest known to the school, as advised there. Or, if you want to know from an existing governor what the role entails, I'm happy to answer what questions I can, since I am one! Contact me on 01663 745940 or via
  3. We've had a request from an existing supporter, asking if we know anyone we could recommend to maintain hardwood windows, chosen over Upvc for environmental reasons. What's needed is someone to prepare and recoat them every so often, so they keep their condition. Do you know someone local you can recommend? Please let me know and I'll pass the word on. Thanks!
  4. Last, this Sunday, July 14th, is the school's (and cricket club's) 'Summer Smasher', held at the cricket ground, from 11-4.30p.m. This is a fundraising event for both, but also a grand day's entertainment - and entry is free! There'll be bouncy castles, kids' 'tattoos', welly wanging, a coconut shy, hooking a duck stall, a 'lucky lolly tree', a series of live bands, Kwik cricket tournament, the annual cricket club duck race, cakes, snacks and hot drinks, quality ales and beers on tap, a gin bar, sausages and burgers...….and much more. And the weather is looking good for the event too! It's got to be worth a visit, and your support.

So... something you can help with here, and enjoy? We hope so. And thank you.

Wednesday 3 July 2019

Community Minibus Service

As a number of you will know, it’s very sadly become apparent that the Hayfield Community Minibus service can no longer operate as it has so successfully for a number of years. Run by Hayfield Sustainable Transport limited (HSTL), a wholly independent but linked organisation to Sustainable Hayfield, it’s been confirmed that HSTL can no longer secure insurance for the minibuses. And without insurance, the facility cannot run. Shareholders, volunteer drivers and existing hirers have been informed and the service has ceased.

What may come in its place has yet to be determined but Roland Strube from HSTL is working hard to salvage what he can from this situation. Below, he sets out the basic facts of the situation.

Dear All

After around six years of growing use of the community minibus service, HSTL has been advised by its insurance brokers that, because of claims made over the last few years for damage sustained in the course of the minibuses’ operation, the community minibus service can no longer be covered for insurance purposes. And, once our own brokers have made that decision, no other insurance company will look at insuring the service.

This news has come as a great shock. We have strenuously sought alternative means of securing cover but have been unsuccessful. As a result, the minibuses cannot be operated or driven, and existing hirers have been informed. We are very sorry that events have taken this course, which was wholly unpredicted. We recognise the inconvenience this causes for those who have relied upon the service, and very much regret having to take this step. A valued community resource has, accordingly, been stood down with immediate effect.

We are continuing to work on rescuing what we can from this situation. This is not easy. Our first thoughts are to see whether one community minibus can be made available to the primary school, for its use (it already is a substantial user) and that the other might be used by a local passenger service vehicle operator who might commit to provide some of the same services on an affordable, commercial, basis. But this depends on funds available, shareholder intentions and the capacities and willingness of partner agencies. We will continue to explore these options and, when something concrete emerges, we shall endeavour to let the local community know of what arrangements it’s been possible to put in place.

I appreciate how disappointing this news will be for many people. We are ourselves devastated by this development, and will do what we can to mitigate this situation.


Roland Strube
On behalf of Hayfield Sustainable Transport Limited (HSTL)

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