We're grassroots Heathrow residents proving that communities less dependent on oil can be more resilient, stronger and happier. We take direct action on climate change and shrinking supplies of cheap energy by transitioning to a post-oil, community-led future for the Heathrow villages.

4 Years and Counting

Posted: March 20th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Events | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | No Comments »

 

Credits to Community Food Growers Network for this report and photoscrowd kidsonlogs

Grow Heathrow, the squatted community garden by Heathrow airport, celebrated it’s 4th Birthday on Saturday the 1st of March.

People came from Bristol, Cambridge and France to kick off the celebrations with ‘Three Acres and a Cow’ on the Friday evening- a people’s history of Britain through folk songs, stories and poems connecting The Norman Conquest and Peasants’ Revolt with the 80′s road protests and Occupy via the enclosures and Highland Clearances.

Over 50 folk sat down for a hot skipped meal to watch the show which included performances from ‘Crazy Dvine’, Mark Brown, storyteller Nick Hunt, and Keely Mills who is Poet Laurette for Peterborough.

Saturday morning arrived and saw 150 people pass through the gates for site tours, cob-oven pizzas, seed sowing and sunshine.

The highlight of the day was definitely the Cake competition which saw the site turn into a kind of amphitheater arena with the audience finding viewing points on piles of logs, the cabin and whatever else they could find!

Cakes were followed by some top speeches from local campaigner Tracey, John McDonnell MP, Grow Heathrower Sam and supporters of the project.

As the blight of the Heathrow Third Runway still threatens the village of Sipson, and the Con-Dem government continues its mania of austerity cuts, it was once again inspiring to see Grow Heathrow thriving- putting politics into practice and building community power in the face of economic, ecological and democratic crises.

To find out more about Grow Heathrow visit www.transitionheathrow.com

And to learnt about storyteller Nick Hunt’s new book ‘Walking the Woods and the Water’ see  http://nickhuntscrutiny.com/

Music from 3 Acres and a Cow at https://soundcloud.com/crazydivine

Credits to Community Food Growers Network for blog and photos

http://bit.ly/1gPTYan

Introduction to Gardening – course at Grow Heathrow

Posted: February 28th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Gardening Club, Growing Group, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , | No Comments »

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Come and learn how to grow abundant and healthy fruit and vegetables in an organic way at the Community Market Garden GrowHeathrow this spring!

What? This course is for those who want to gain basic horticultural skills, build knowledge and confidence of organic foodgrowing within a community garden context or at home in your garden. Designed to build basic and technical skills through a combination of practical training within the Grow Heathrow growing space along side supported theory sessions on these methods of growing.
When? Running through 5 sessions from March – July 2014;      10am-4pm Lunch provided. One Sunday a month confirmed dates;
  • 16th March
  • 20th April
  • 18th May
  • 15th June
  • 20th July
Where? Grow Heathrow site with potential trips to local allotment and growing sites. Site address; Grow Heathrow, Vineries Close, Sipson, West Drayton, UB7 0JH

Course Content that will be covered over the 5 sessions:

  • 1. Planning a Growing Space; Organic vegetable garden design techniques including site and location, crop rotation and companion planting.
  • 2. Soil Care; study of different soils, and soil cultivation techniques; a look at composting, mulching and green manures for soil care.
  • 3. Propagation; Indoor seed sowing techniques, and how to prepare ground for sowing and planting. seedling aftercare
  • 4. Seasonal garden maintenance; specific techniques for vegetable and fruit production. organic weed management, home made organic fertilisers, appropriate tool -use    and ongoing care.
  • 5. Inviting Wildlife; enhance biodiversity in the garden to help with pest and disease management. Basic plant identification

Suggested donation for the full 5 sessions £30 for food and printing costs (open to sliding scale donations according to what people can afford, contact for more information)

Each session will build on the previous ones  so commitment and attendance for the full course is required. Drop-in gardeners are welcome at our Growing Sundays, the ‘Introduction to Gardening’ course is for people who can attend all sessions.

Spaces are limited, please send confirmation by the 9th March. We’d especially like to hear from people living in the local area and who’ve been involved with GH in the past, but all are welcome. Get in touch with any questions or come to Grow Heathrow’s 4th Birthday on Saturday 1st March, you can speak to someone in the Growing Space and have a look around the site.

We’re really excited to be able to offer this course, we look forward to hearing from you!

Contact: Aimee Lormand, 07592945249 aglormand@gmail.com or info@transitionheathrow.com


Grow Heathrow 4th Birthday Party

Posted: January 11th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Events | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | No Comments »

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* SAVE THE DATE: 4TH BIRTHDAY PARTY, Saturday 1st March  *

The past year has been filled with more growing, renewable energy, sustainable building, and much more. 2014 will see us in to our 4th Birthday celebration at Grow Heathrow… (Yes, get ready)

Saturday 1st March from 1pm at Grow Heathrow. Plus Pre-Birthday performance, ‘Three Acres and a Cow’ Land Rights Performance, Friday 28th February from 5pm at Grow Heathrow

We’re breaking last year’s record of over 100 pizzas in our wood-fired clay oven, with a bigger feast, more face painting, seed sowing, arts, more live music and of course the famous bike-powered sound system. Bring your friends and family, and come on down…

Plus, check out our legal update here and come down to site to check out some of our 2013 additions such as the finished straw bale house, artistic totem pole, the new gasifying wood burner and help us kick off our 5th year with a bang.

See you there!

More info and address/directions here:

http://www.transitionheathrow.com/grow-heathrow/

info[at]transitionheathrow.com


We fought the Law!

Posted: January 10th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: legal | Tags: , , , , , , | No Comments »

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After all these years Grow Heathrow have finally come to the end of our legal battle!!

We  were not able to take the appeal to the supreme court, as the case was not awarded legal aid, by a body that is being cut heavily by this government. Read more about cuts to legal aid here: http://www.savelegalaid.co.uk/

However, the case has set a positive precedent in housing law that will be able to be used in future cases on evictions for both squatters and exploited tenants. The last appeal heard at the High Court was the first case of it’s type where article 8, the Human Rights Act, was ever deemed to be relevant. Big news in a time where squatting is being criminalized in the middle of a housing crises.

Where does that leave us?

Basically in a similar place to where we were before. Grow Heathrow is still under possible threat, much like the last 4 years, but business as usual continues. The Wind Turbine is still soaring, the Chard is still growing and the compost loo’s are still being stirred!

Mainly we are still trying to create negotiations with the land owners to ultimately and ideally secure the site. With the 3rd runway back on the cards, we are not going anywhere. Watch this space…


Want to learn about Geodomes?

Posted: November 19th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Art, Cool Projects, Education | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | No Comments »

Geodome

Come and help build a 17 foot (5.1816m)! Geodome at Grow Heathrow. The workshop will run for a week from Friday 6th Dec.

We’ll be using a unique design that innovates the geodome structure for ease of assembly. This design incorporates a new star connection method that enables just one person to construct. Laying out the cover over the stars means that the cover will be already in place as the geodome is erected.  Possibly included in the course will be waterproof seam sewing techniques and dome canvas sewing if we have time. The course will be limited in numbers to 4 persons each day so please email in advance to let us know your availability and interest so we can maximise participants.

Geodomes are based on triangular geometry and were popularised by Buckmeister Fuller. They are predominantly used for earthquake relief due to their intrinsic strength at intersecting joints, this makes it an ideal solution for earthships, which this model is intended.

We will be using recycled metal poles from the dilapidated greenhouses we have on site. Geodomes are one of the most versatile structures available; they are scalable and can be made into any size you wish, you can use all sorts of materials available, and can be used for all sorts of applications, and they can also be joined together.

We will be using a 3V design, which means it has 3 different size pole lengths. It also has the option of a 4/9 or 5/9 variant, which alows the dome to have 2 different heights, either less than or bigger than half a sphere.

Hope to see you budding eco builders on the week of the 6th.


Heathrow Villages awarded £7000 to create a Neighbourhood Plan

Posted: November 4th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Events, Residents | Tags: , , , , | 1 Comment »

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A group of residents from Harmondsworth, Sipson and Harlington have successfully bid for a £7000 grant to give villagers a greater say in future development and planning issues. 

The money has come from the Community Development Foundation, one of the organisations administering a £9.5 million government fund to support communities creating a Neighbourhood Plan for their area.

The plans can deal with a wide range of subjects, such as housing, employment, heritage and transport, or may focus on one or two issues that are of particular importance to local people.

Holly Crofter, a resident at Grow Heathrow in Sipson and now a member of the Heathrow Villages Planning Committee (HVPC) that will be using the grant, is enthusiastic about the project: “The Neighbourhood Plan will give our villages a say in development decisions that have, in the past, been difficult to influence in a meaningful way.  It’s particularly important for this area, which has suffered the blight caused by airport-related development for decades.”

Having secured the grant with the help of the Harmondsworth and Sipson Residents’ Association and arranged for the charity Groundwork to accept the funds on their behalf, HVPC are eager to move forward with the process to draw up an approved Neighbourhood Plan.  This includes finding seven residents from each village to join a Neighbourhood Forum.

A public meeting about the project is being held at St Mary’s Church Hall in Harmondsworth on Thursday 14 November at 7pm.

Harlington resident and HVPC member Christine Taylor is hoping for a good turnout: “To complete this project it’s vital that people from all three villages get involved. This is our chance to tell the planners and developers what we want in our area and, just as important, what we don’t want.”


Made Possible By Squatting

Posted: September 9th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Cool Projects | Tags: , , | No Comments »

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See http://www.madepossiblebysquatting.co.uk/ for more info, including an outline of all the upcoming events.


195 Mare Street opened as a social centre, made possible by squatting

Posted: August 31st, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Action, Cool Projects | Tags: , , , , , | No Comments »

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Reblogged from 195marestreet.wordpress.com:

Right now we’ve got a great vibe going on, everyone sitting outside listening to chill music; the free shop is on display and we’re cooking up vegan burgers. Lots of people have been coming in to see what we’re up to and grabbing some stuff from the free shop – everything for free, they can’t always believe it.

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We’ll be doing the same tomorrow, letting people see that we’re here and that we want to do something positive for the community. So many people are keen to start running their own workshops and start making use of this amazing unused and abandoned space. We can’t wait either.

Join us on Thursday for lots of free food on the BBQ, popcorn, music, bubble show and lots more. We’ll also be having our free shop outside so come and get yourself some freebies.

Earlier on in the day we found 3 men knocking at our door. They told us they were contracted to come on Thursday and knock down the walls of the building, pull out the floor boards and pull out the plaster from the walls.  One guy became the ‘owner’ and said that he was going to knock down the building so he could build luxury apartments. The land registry is yet to be updated with who the new owner is, and if its only just been sold there in no way that they have been granted planning permission to do anything. The building cannot be knocked down or damaged because of this, and there has yet to be an owner who has been willing to invest in restoring this beautiful building.

We’re not sure how they intend on damaging a listed building to build flats without planning permission; there is nothing on the planning register that states any planning works to 195 Mare street at present. While this building is being left to rot away, we intend on making as positive use of this space as possible. Come and join us and make this an amazing space for everyone :)


The fight goes on…

Posted: July 3rd, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Events, legal, Media | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Residents and supporters of Grow Heathrow outside Central London County Court

Update on the Court of Appeal verdict:

The judges failed to reach a unanimous decision on the case but by majority, our appeal was dismissed and permission was granted for the owners to seek a warrant for an eviction.

On the plus side, one of the judges found that squatters as well as tenants are entitled to respect for their home under article 8 of The European Convention on Human Rights and that the court should consider the individual circumstances of those affected when deciding how soon to make an eviction.

We are now working with our lawyers on a further appeal to the Supreme Court to define the arguments about whether article 8 is relavent to private land owners.

In the meantime, there is a low risk of imminent eviction and we’re asking for support on site over the next few weeks. Come along today for dinner and help us make plans for securing our future.

See here for directions to site. If you plan to stay the night, please bring a sleeping bag and tent if you can.

Grow Heathrow campaigner Joe Rake said:

“We think it’s important to challenge a law that protects the right of irresponsible landlords to trash the heart of a community.  We are still following up options to appeal to the Supreme court and hope we can come to an agreement so that we can carry on working with the local resident’s association and our MP to make sure ‘Grow Heathrow’ exists as a community resource in the long-term.”

Sipson resident Tracey Howard commented:

“At a time when harsh austerity cuts are effecting people across the country, ‘Grow Heathrow’ is a great example of what can be done when a community takes back control of its land to meet its own needs.

Spread the word and thanks for your support!


Court of Appeal verdict – Wed 3 July

Posted: June 28th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Events, legal | Tags: , , , | No Comments »

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We’ll find out the long-awaited verdict from the Court of Appeal at 9.30am on Wednesday 3 July.

Please support us:

We’d love you to join us at the Royal Courts of Justice (courtroom 70) at 9.30 on Wed. Better yet, come show your solidarity where it’s most important – at Grow Heathrow!

Join us on site during the day and into the evening. The bike workshop will be running all afternoon, we’ll be cooking up a delicious dinner and there’ll probably be a campfire and music. You’re also welcome to stay over on Wednesday night, ready for our community workday on Thursday.

You can find directions to Grow Heathrow here. And the Royal Courts of Justice are on The Strand, WC2A 2LL.

Please spread the news far and wide, and for more info call us on 07890751568. You can also email info@transitionheathrow.com or tweet @transheathrow.

Love from the greenhouses xx