Cumbria Action for Sustainability
Do you know, there's so much packed into this newsletter that I'm going to skip my usual preamble and let you get on with reading it! Jaki
Gearing up for a grand Green Build!
Chair made from pallet wood
While you're all enjoying the summer holidays, we at CAfS are busily constructing a fantastic Cumbria Green Build Festival for you to tuck into in September!

You'll notice lots of new events this year, delving into environmentally-friendly living as well as low-energy building. Planning a winter kitchen garden, beekeeping and making things from pallets are just a few examples, alongside our popular events and workshops on building materials and techniques for energy-efficient homes. And, of course, the chance to visit some clever buildings.

When the events open for booking shortly, you'll also see that there is a small entry fee for more of them this year. Our grant funding for Green Build is greatly reduced, and the sale of tickets will make it possible for us to run the festival. We're keeping ticket prices as low as we can.

Events are spread across September this year, with more on weekends and evenings, and with all the exciting new events on offer, there should be something for everyone to enjoy.

Look out for a special Green Build edition of the newsletter shortly with all the details, so you'll have first choice for tickets.
Groups to converge on Alston Moor
Community groups from Alston Moor will converge with sustainability organisations from around the wider region in September, to help map out the vision for a more green and sustainable future for the Moor.

It's all part of the Alston Moor Greenprint, funded by the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation and run by Roe Baker from CAfS. The convergence event will bring groups together to share experience and knowledge and see how they can work together in the future.

One of the highlights will be an engaging overview and update by Paul Allen from the Centre for Alternative Technology, on the global challenges around climate change and sustainability, and how the UK is responding to them. With the context set, there'll be some interactive workshops and activities focusing on Alston Moor, followed by local food and an invitation to stay for a ceilidh in the evening.

Sustainability and community groups should have received details about the event, but if you haven't heard and would like to come, please email It's on 8 September, from 4pm.
In brief...
Date set for next Alston Moor Repair Café
We're really happy to report that the first Alston Moor Repair Café was an overwhelming success earlier this month, with fantastic volunteers prepared to share their combined skills and knowledge and get lots of repairs done.

There were 23 items brought in for repair, with 17 successfully fixed on the day and more since.

The café proved to be a lively social event, too, with lots of tea and cake and chatting.

Feedback from the public was great, ranging from "Wonderful!" to "Great idea – weekly event please!" and "Really pleased to have this opportunity".

With the first one under our belt, planning is well under way for the next. It'll be at Nenthead Village Hall on Sunday 23 September, from 10am to 1pm, alongside the Community BIG Breakfast.

CAfS is running the Repair Café on behalf of Alston Moor Partnership, thanks to funding from Cumbria County Council and the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation as part of the Alston Moor Greenprint.
#ReadyForRain video diary update
Just a quick update for you on the house retrofit that we'll be following in Appleby, as mentioned in the last newsletter...

The owners are still in the planning permission stage, and we might hear more within a week. The video diaries will kick off once planning permission is in place, and we'll send you an update then.

All the videos will go on our YouTube channel, so here's the link to subscribe if you haven't already:

Sustainability news...
Consultation: SLDC climate change ideas meeting
If you weren't able to make it to one of South Lakeland District Council's public meetings exploring ways to tackle climate change, there's another chance to share your ideas.

The final meeting in the series across the district will be held at Victoria Hall in Grange-over-Sands on Friday 7 September from 2pm until 4pm.
Plastic: Plastic-Free Cumbria Pledges launched
You can now go online and make pledges to reduce plastic waste in different ways. The pledge scheme, open to people across Cumbria, was launched by Penrith Action for Community Transition this month.

The pledges offer some great ideas for simple actions you can take, and by signing up you'll also be adding your voice, helping to show businesses and other organisations that there's demand for them to offer alternatives to plastic.

There are more than a dozen pledges to choose from and you can make up your own as well, so no matter what your situation there are sure to be some actions you can take.

Make one pledge or many – every little helps!
Networking: Penrith raises glass to Green Drinks
Penrith is the latest town to have its own Green Drinks session. It's on the first Thursday of every month, starting at 7.30pm, at Dockray Hall pub. There are Green Drinks get-togethers around the world, where people interested in environmental issues meet up to talk over a drink. For more information about the Penrith one, contact Rebecca Neal:
Resources: Overshoot Day reached earlier than ever
Tomorrow, 1 August, is Earth Overshoot Day, the point in the year when we've consumed more than nature can regenerate.

It's been in the news more this year, as we're reaching it earlier than ever before. A new study has shown we've used "a year’s worth of carbon, food, water, fibre, land and timber in a record 212 days". Read more >>
Climate: Shape of things to come?
Our sunny summer was twice as likely to happen due to climate change, a preliminary assessment by scientists has found. Read more >>
How Low Can You Go?
The devices you use for cooking can have an impact on your energy bills and your carbon footprint. Your microwave and your slow cooker are apparently your best friends when it comes to energy use. Ovens are the most energy hungry. Perhaps it's time to revisit some of those microwave and slow cooker recipe books languishing on the shelves! Read more >>
Uniform Recycling Day | 11 Aug | 10am-12pm | Salvation Army Hall, Penrith
Get free school uniforms, PE kits, shoes outgrown by others. Drop off in advance.

Beautiful Recycling workshop | 14 Aug | Eden Arts, Penrith
Myriad Studio workshop with artist Helen Walsh to make art out of rubbish.

Freegle Give & Take | 1 Sep | 10am-12pm | Newbiggin Village Hall nr Penrith
Bring things you don't want any more and get free things you need.

Farmers' markets

  • Carlisle - First Sat
  • Brampton - Last Sat
  • Kirkoswald - Third Sat
  • Brough - Third Sat
  • Orton - Second Sat
  • Penrith - Third Tue

Sustainability networking
  • Carlisle: Conversation Café | Third Sat | 12-2pm | Cakes & Ale Café
  • Penrith: Green Drinks | First Thu | 7.30pm | Dockray Hall

Repair cafes Bring along items that need fixed and volunteers will do their best to help. You might even learn a few skills along the way.

Beach/river cleans:

Further afield, but worth knowing about:

Introduction to Permaculture Design | Sat 11 & Sun 12 Aug | 9.30am-4.30pm | Dilston Physic Garden, Tyne Valley
Know of a sustainability event?  Tell us  & we'll include it next time.
Cumbria Action for Sustainability
01768 210276 | |
Company Number: 6492907 Registered Charity Number: 1123155