Archive for July, 2010

Super Sprint Mill!

Saturday, July 31st, 2010

15 members of the Food & Agriculture group had a grand trip out to Sprint Mill last Saturday. We learnt all about Edward and Romola’s philosophy on sustainable, low impact living. To start the day we were given a greenwood demonstration – Edward coppices all the mill’s wood for heat and cooking, makes gates and hurdles for the smallholding, and makes greenwood crafts, beanpoles, pea sticks etc… the goats even join in on the fun by eating the bark.

Group photo in the veg patch

Edward walked us around some of his smallholding, showing us the vegetable plot they have in the garden and the field they own a short distance away. The field  is divided into 10 compartments including an orchard, a few ‘coppicettes’ (small areas of coppiced hazel), a section of biomass willow, some basketry willow, and their traditional hay meadows full of lovely meadowsweet, hay rattle and other traditional hay plants … all loved by the mill’s bees!

in amongst the ash trees

in the field

Before lunch we all had the chance to use Edward’s scythes along the lane – great fun, quick and much more sociable than a noisy strimmer!


If you would like to know about the group’s projects or would like to host a meeting please contact[at]gmail[dot]com.

Cycle for Toddlers

Tuesday, July 27th, 2010

Families cycling along the canal path in Kendal

On Sunday parents and kids enjoyed a free guided cycle ride along the traffic-free canal path in Kendal. The ride was led by a SLACC volunteer as part of the Summer of Cycling project. The event aimed to show how easy it can be to cycle with your kids. There are a range of accessories for cycling with children available on the market such as baby seats, tag-a-longs and child trailers.

Kendal is becoming more and more popular with cyclists and the canal path is a safe and convenient route through town avoiding traffic. Kendal residents now have the opportunity to get to know some of the many local short cuts to the town centre, as detailed on SLACC’s new Walking and Cycling Map of Kendal. Visit to request your free map.

The next event is a Mass Cycle Ride in front of the Kendal Torchlight Parade on Friday the 10th of September.

Watch out for potato blight

Sunday, July 25th, 2010

The Kendal Grow Your Own Group is advising local potato growers to be on the look-out for potato blight.  This fungal disease likes the warm and wet weather that we have recently had, and if unchecked will soak into the potato tubers where it will cause a nasty smelling rot.  The rot can spread in store, too.

The first signs are brown patches on the potato leaf, usually on the edges, with a lighter green margin. Eventually, the leaf will rot, and it can spread to the stems.

Blighted potatos

“If you suspect you’ve got blight on your potatoes, the best thing to do is to remove any leaves and burn or dispose of them well away from the garden or allotment” says Ros Taylor of the Grow Your Own helpline. “If you don’t do this, spores will drop onto the soil and spread to the potatoes themselves. If you remove the tops, the potatoes can be dug up for immediate use, but you can leave them in the soil for 2-3 weeks without them coming to any harm and they will have a chance to form a skin and so store better.  If your potatoes already have blight, you will see it when they are dug up.”

Potato blight

The Grown Your Own scheme offers advice and northern know-how and its volunteer advisors can be reached by telephone or email (07980 325804 )

Food it up – 24th July

Monday, July 12th, 2010
Saturday 24th July
Sprint Mill, Burneside
Directions: Go to Burneside.  Follow signs to Skelsmergh.  Turn left at sign to Sprint Mill.  Call 725168 if you get lost!    Please walk, cycle, liftshare if at all possible.

This will include:
  • a brief introduction to green woodworking
  • a tour of the fruit and vegetable garden
  • a tour of the 7-acre field divided into 10 compartments: orchard,biomass willow, basketry
  • willow, proper hedgelaying, use of hand scyths…
  • Time for discussion about Edward and Romola’s low carbon, human powered management philosophy and promotion/development of wildlife habitats
Bring food along to share!

Please send items for the agenda[at]

You are welcome to attend some or all of the above

Wild food walk – Sunday 18th July

Monday, July 12th, 2010
Come along to our next Wild Food Walk … Coastal Wild Food.

We will take a walk from Arnside looking at edible plants and seaweeds and learn how to use them.
Meet at Arnside Pier at 11am. The walk will be 2 miles and we will be finished by 2pm.
Book your place on 01539 740694.  Please use public transport if possible — there is a train and bus service to Arnside.

Apples and sunshine (sort of)

Monday, July 12th, 2010

Yesterday’s Staveley Carnival was a great success. Despite the theme being Under Staveley’s Umbrella all the bright colours and funky drumming managed to keep the rain away and coax the sun to come out for an hour or two.

Here are some photos of the carnival costumes

Carnival umbrella

Carnival giant

The joint SLACC, SENS and Apples for All stall was fantastic (even if we do say so ourselves)!!

SENS and Staveley GTi ( had a bike related quiz and gave away 3 pre-loved bikes to 3 lucky winners.

Volunteers were busy on the Apples for All stall encouraging passers-by to press their own apple juice and have a taste, sign up for a free apple tree and come along to our Apple Day on 16th October. Despite promising free apple trees in October we also sold 3 trees grafted by SLOG (

Apples for All!

squished apples and strawberries


As always, contact tsl.abundance[at] if you want to get involved in appley events, we especially need volunteers for our Apple Day on October 16th!

And contact staveleygti[at] ifor more info on the Green Travel Initiative

Carnival time!

Thursday, July 8th, 2010

The next big event for your diaries is Staveley Carnival this Sunday 10th July, 1pm on the recreation ground.

There will be a SLACC display, a stall from our friends at SENS (Sustainability and Energy Network in Staveley), and the Staveley Apples for All project will have a stall pressing apple juice. Come along and see how tasty freshly pressed juice is – you can even have a go at using the press yourself!

For more details on the Carnival go to

If you want to get involved with any of the stalls contact jennings_ruth[at], otherwise see you there!

Transition Tales – the story of Kendal and South Lakes

Sunday, July 4th, 2010

Last week Kendal received a visit from Totnes storyteller Steph Bradly, who is travelling around the country on foot, visiting Transition Initiative’s as she goes. Kendal and South Lakes became a registered Transition Initiative earlier in 2010.

Thanks for sharing your spirit and energy with us Steph!

To read about Steph’s experience in Kendal, Ambelside and Sprint Mill, see her blog

Find some inspiring stories of success and hard work from all over the country.

Kentmere Konundrum – celebrating Bike Week

Friday, July 2nd, 2010

On Sunday, families hunted down clues on their bikes, cycling along the quiet lanes of Staveley and Bowston as part of the WHEELBASE Kentmere Konundrum, assisted by volulunteers from the Staveley Green Travel Initiative (GTi). For a full report, check out

Family searching for clues on the Kentmere Konundrum

Kentmere Konundrum was held on the final day of Bike Week, a national celebration of cycling falling between 19-27th June. Volunteers from the GTi ran a second ‘Dr Bike’ session at Staveley Pavilion on the 19th July and an after school ‘Dr Bike’ at St Oswald’s School in Burneside on the 17th July, helping pupils prepare for masses of cycling during Bike Week.

The next SLACC cycle event will be Cycle for Women, being held on Sat 17th July, dep. 10am from the rear of County Hall in Kendal. A women only ride taking in the best country lanes surrounding Kendal (24 miles approx.). Organised as part of the Summer of Cycling –