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.

Transition Heathrow at Hayes Carnival – Sophie’s blog

Posted: July 14th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Events, Growing Group, Residents | Tags: , , , | No Comments »

I was asked to help out Transition Heathrow for the Hayes Carnival in Barra Hall Park on Saturday 10th July and immediately I said yes. I love the project both for its local implications and its wider political vision. Transition is all about recognising climate change is happening and that oil will and is becoming more and more scarce. It’s all positioned in a framework of what positive impact it can have on a local and global level. Plus I love a local day out and Hayes Carnival promised to be a great way of getting out there and meeting more of the community in the local area.

So on a beautiful (and incredibly hot) sunny day, amongst the genteel setting of Barra Hall park, Transition Heathrow set about transforming its little corner of the park into a beautiful representation of how life could be post-transition, with yards and yards of bunting, ex-airline pilots turned gardeners, tea and cakes and smiles in abundance.

If the transition movement is that its all about the positives, then Hayes Carnival provided an excellent opportunity to show how we deal with issues of power created by burning oil and coal. We just don’t need it. We have renewable that can provide so much of our electrical needs.

To make this point real, Transition Heathrow invited our friends from Coltek to come with their solar powered generator to provide power for the area, and as the blistering sun beat down, we danced to the music on the Transition stage, with live acts curated by another of our friends, the guys from the award winning folk club the Magpies Nest. It was a beautiful line-up, with music from the likes of Paris Thompson, Anna Log, Troubadour Rose, James Mcdonald, Aaron Jonah Lewis, JAW and Perhaps Contraption. The solar power also extended to the Renewable cinema, a lovely blacked out tent, strewn with cushions, showing a selection of films curated by more of our friends: Just Do It Films.

The café was run with aplomb and again set out a vision for a post-oil future. We had a pedal powered smoothie maker, creating delicious smoothies that involved some personal work. A smoothie never tasted better than one you had to pedal a standing bicycle to make….. There were home made cakes using vegetables we had grown in Sipson. We also had the legendarily efficient Rocket stoves. A beautifully constructed cooking stove using recycled oil drums and burning wood. These boiled our water so we could provide tea and coffee to the thirsty carnival revellers.

Grow Heathrow, the sister project of Transition Heathrow was there, giving away plants and seeds and general growing advice to encourage people to get growing locally. Screen printing workshops were also provided and more friends, this time from the radical social centre 56A, provided bike maintenance free of charge. And finally there was a free shop giving away clothes free of charge.

The Transition movement is all about creating community reliance with bottom up solutions but it is also about having fun with your neighbours, family and friends. For me, Hayes Carnival showed how a community can come together and be a showcase for a better future.

For photos of the day check our flickr page: http://www.flickr.com/photos/47991844@N06/sets/72157624348584707/