Wild about Totnes
Recognising the need for pollinators and with an increased interest in the science of growing food, many local food growers are setting aside a section of their garden to support wildlife. A group of growers have formed Wild Totnes, an advisory group that will advise and help people carry out wilderness regeneration to support biodiversity going through difficult times, reduce extinctions and plant trees to sequester carbon. Schools have formed support units for this initiative and some students monitor named species in their home gardens. Tree planting expeditions take place most weekends across the winter.
Water rationing saves on butts
Severe water shortages are being coped with by stringent water rationing and extensive reuse of grey water. Flush piping and buckets are being supplied to all households to enable people to collect grey domestic water and refill toilet cisterns. Clothes are lasting longer as they are washed less. Rainwater butts are being extended with additional barrels on most buildings, as the hotter weather is bringing flash rainfall that needs to be collected. Many growers and gardeners have dug extended wastewater irrigation schemes for watering plants and many have created covered horticulture units.
Climate migrants to be allocated around Devon
Totnes and District is expecting to host an additional 1,000 people over the next 5 years, although this figure may rise. Many people are worried about the impacts and whether all the services will cope, but Community and Voluntary Services host a number of community evenings to introduce the idea and later the new migrants to the area. Migrants are hosted as lodgers in family homes and a number of flooded units in Babbage Road are to be rebuilt on raised bases to create co-housing units for the incomers. Many migrants have skills for growing different vegetables, which are more adapted to the warmer climate.
Totnes and District Agricultural show blooms
The variety of stands has expanded including many advisory stands for food growers and agricultural services. Local public representatives host a stand to invite ideas and initiatives that the public are interested in. Many people take the opportunity to discuss the new locally based income taxation system and how they would like to see the money spent.
Totnes Water Back on Tap
SHDC agrees to investigate some of the old aquifers including the old Ashprington springs in and around Totnes to the delight of many. A pilot Totnes Water supplies in returnable glass bottles springs to life.
Paid volunteers opens the way for better local services
A restructuring of Local Authorities as they take on more duties in line with localisation of services improves dialogue between the sectors. The changes away from privatised services has opened very localised employment opportunities and in response to public meetings, many of the new posts are part-time to enable people to have time to grow food, mind their children, help the elders etc. Many voluntary groups will be able to claim for paid volunteer workers under the new localised services and this is widely welcomed.
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