To quote the polar explorer Robert Swan, “The greatest threat to our planet is the belief that someone else will save it”. Floods, air-pollution, extreme weather, sea level rise, crop failure, water shortages, deforestation, wildfires, desertification, biodiversity loss: the list of worldwide environmental catastrophes is growing bigger each day.
And yet people are now taking action, both nationally and internationally as well as locally. Here in Henfield last summer the Parish Council declared a Climate and Environment Emergency and Sustainable Henfield 2030 (or SH2030) was launched with the aim of supporting people and businesses to become more sustainable (see sustainablehenfield2030.org for more information). They have now teamed up with the Henfield Community Partnership to create a powerful force for change in Henfield.
So, throughout 2020 we will be featuring a range of articles in BN5 Magazine on how we can live in a more sustainable manner and care for our village and the wider environment – ‘Love Henfield’. Some activities you might be familiar with and others you might be completely new to you but either way here’s a taster of what will be coming up over the next few months.
We have an article this month about what you can put in your blue-lidded recycling bin (did you know that margarine tub lids can be recycled?) and another about where you can recycle milk bottle lids and crisp packets amongst other items (at the Henfield Haven!) This is a new service set up by SH2030, part of their drive to bring better recycling facilities to the village.
In February we have an article on the Henfield Shed, a fabulous local registered charity which promotes social inclusion and cherishes (as well as shares) skills. The Henfield Shed repairs and restores broken household items as well as creating new items such as planters, bird boxes and clocks from recycled materials – not just a great fun place to go but a really sustainable venture.
Last year members of Sustainable Henfield 2030, Henfield Conservation Volunteers and Henfield Garden Club came together to plant wildflowers and fruit trees on Borrer Bank at the top of Barrow Hill (see the news item for more information). Their aim was to create greater biodiversity and a bee corridor on the bank and we look forward to reading about their success and other green gardening tips later in the year.
Another feature we will write about will be our two lovely charity shops on Henfield High Street and the a huge number of charity jumble sales which take place each year which all raise a lot of money for good causes. Not only can you donate good quality clothes, books, shoes and furniture to these charities, but you can also pick up pre-loved items too at a fraction of the price of brand new.
Here in West Sussex we are well placed to be a lot more sustainable about some of the food we consume. Not only can we buy seasonally and locally and therefore drastically reducing our food miles, but for many of us with gardens growing a few fruit and vegetables is easily possible. Look out for an article on sustainable food and preventing food waste later this year.
We’ll also be promoting re-wilding projects, green gardening, greener home improvements and the often simple and money-saving changes we can make to reduce our own carbon footprint. Look out for our article on the Kinder Living Show, a brilliant place to learn more and get involved.
We’d also like to hear about your ideas for living more sustainably in Henfield on our Facebook page. We have a fantastic community spirit in the village and there are so many activities going on that we would love to hear about them all – do please drop us a line.
So if you ‘Love Henfield’ too, please look out for the articles with our Love Henfield logo over next few months, and in the words of Archbishop Desmond Tutu: “Do your little bit of good where you are; it’s those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world.”
Emma Osman & Sarah Butler