Transition Bedford – steering group meeting

"Transition Bedford?" event 22nd of June 2009

"Transition Bedford?" event 22nd on June 2009

The Transition Bedford Steering Group Meeting will be on the 7th of July (i.e. next Tuesday) 7.30 to 9pm at the Bunyan Museum on Mill Street, Bedford Town Centre.

While this is a steering group meeting, all interested parties are invited. We plan to have a roundtable discussion dedicated to the steering group, plus a second open table discussing issues related to Transition Bedford (local response to climate change and peak oil). There will be ways in which the non-steering group members can feed into the steering group discussions and decision-making, creating an open and inclusive environment. Please, if you’ve indicated you’re interested in being in the steering group, your presence is essential. Momentum is a resource, don’t lose it!!

Evening’s agenda

Steering group meeting;
1. Report back and debrief from June 22nd “Transition Bedford?” event.
2. Action planning and review of decisions taken on the 22nd (for decisions made see below).
3. Definition of the steering group members functions and commitments, terms of reference etc

Open table discussions;
4. Proposals regarding decisions taken (+support/action people are willing to take)
5. Proposal regarding objectives of TB

If you have any items you’d like to add to this agenda please reply to this mail. In future we’ll have a formal process for setting the agenda.

Ana Rosales has kindly volunteered to write up the details given by attendees on the connection forms of the “Transition Bedford?” event. So a report will follow shortly. If you don’t want to receive the report or any further TB updates, please do reply to this email. Katherine Law, also kindly volunteered but Ana got their first. Just proves volunteering is a cut throat business and you’ve got to be quick off the mark

Below is some quick feedback from the previous event. Some of you will have received this already.

Feedback from June 22nd “Transition Bedford?” event

A big thank you to all those who brought food, put up posters and contributed your experience, your ideas and your time to the event on the 22nd.

There was no guarantee that Transition Bedford concept had a future Through the event we wanted to see if the TB seed would fall on fertile ground and so we set some goals to gauge if Bedford is fertile enough for this type of initiative. According to the goals below, the answer is a resounding YES!!!

Measurable goals;

1. The event delivers concrete ideas of our next steps and how we can work together to create a vibrant and sustainable Bedford.
– Over 20 suggested routes forward were given in the “where next” sessions. It was decided through “dot democracy” that the following routes forward should be prioritised;
*Events and activities to increase momentum
*Involve young people

Also receiving considerable support was;
*Spread the word (articles in village mags and local papers)
*Coordinated action with input from borough, college and schools etc
*Website to coordinate efforts / list contact names
*Re-skilling / skills bank

2. A steering group is formed to deliver some/all of these ideas.
– 15 people signed up to the steering group
– a further 5 or 6 people were interested but wanted to know the level of commitment needed. ( it’s important that these people attend the Steering group discussion to define what commitment they think should be required)

3. A second date is agreed upon for a follow up/maintain momentum.
– Booked in for Tue 7th of July, 7.30pm, Bunyan Museum – Ampthill room. all are invited especially steering group(SG)
Format –  Split into two groups; SG and non SG. The SG Involves those willing to put in time and action. Non SG are those people who don’t have time/don’t want to put in action, just ideas.
The SG and non SG reviews and discusses how to deliver the “concrete ideas” listed above in item 2. This gives non SG an opportunity to add ideas and influence SG. The groups then splits as the SG puts together action plan.  Non SG may discuss further and feedback at end or network.

4. Emails address are collected of people who would like to be added to this email list
-28 emails collected to add to list. If traffic increases you may want to change your settings so that you only receive a email digest. Go to googlegroups>my groups>transition- bedford>edit my mebmbership. This “edit my membership” tab can be found on the right hand side of the control panel.

5. A report is written up and sent to attendees that supports groups/ orgs working together
-will be done soon as possible, we have a volunteer doing the data entry from the connection forms

6. 30 – 60 people attend, with a high percentage of “key contributors”
-well attended (I’ve had counts from 65 to 75 people)

Not so measurable goals;

7. Good opportunities for networking, connections are made and cross pollination between individuals and community, religious, political, charity, resident and affinity groups.
-as well as connection on the day, 38 “connection forms” were completed with a  wealth of information that will help connect residents and groups.
– 31 people said they’d like to be part of a community group in their area, with some multiples in places like Goldington, Newnham, Carlton, Presidents, Cualdwell etc

8. Some people are motivated to start a new group or move forward an existing group.
-we’ll find out soon enough.

9. Start down the route of creating an Energy Decent Action Plan
(EDAP) for Bedford and parishes
– Some of Bedford’s most important “green” minds contributed to a first “community mapping” and creating vision of Bedford in 2030
– 32 people indicated areas that they’re active in (such as food, education, arts etc) this information will help develop core groups from across Bedford that can work on different sections of the EDAP
– map will be placed in public places, perhaps with further interaction.

Momentum is a resource. don’t lose it!!!


3 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Baya on July 6, 2009 at 10:32 am

    Hey! Thanks for the message giving a very good summary of what happen on 22nd June. I signed up for the meeting on Tuesday and will do my best to attend, might be a bit late as a family member has decided to turn up unexpectedly. A point I would like to raise is that it is a 30 minutes drive from my village back and forth to Bedford and i wonder if we could find a way in which I could be on the steering group (because I am passionate about Transition and want to be part of yours…no point in starting Transition Langford as yet) without having to spend too much petrol…may be we could use Skype? Anyway, could this issue be raised if I do not make the meeting?
    Hoping that I can


  2. Posted by transitionbedford on July 6, 2009 at 12:04 pm

    Hi Baya, Look forward to seeing you. Will add your issue to the agenda. In principle i think it’s an excellent idea. We just need a venue with an internet connection.
    In future we should have a process for collaborative setting of the agenda. It would be nice if we could get it drafted a week or two before hand so that we can post it up on our discussion group and get people chatting about the issues even if they’re not steering group members.


    • Posted by sadoldhippy on July 9, 2009 at 10:54 am

      Hi All
      I think Lynn did a good job of saving the meeting 🙂 And I am glad we have some sort of idea of what our purpose is (co-ordination, publicity, communication etc). I think the “party not protest” idea is fine, but in my opinion the transformation of our lives as individuals and our society (which is what is needed in the face of the oncoming crisis)is a political act. Looking at my own life, I am aware that the only apects that are truly sustainable are my relationships and my spirituality. All the material stuff really is not, from my food to my soap and shampoo and way beyond. I think that in order to survive what is coming, we need to live bioregionally and that this is the essence of transiton, the transformation to a decentralised society living within the carrying capacity of its bioregion.
      Sorry if this is a bit of a rant, not meant to offend.
      Take Care


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