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The Context

Our current industrial civilisation was built during an era of cheap oil, a stable climate, plentiful energy, water and topsoil, and healthy natural ecosystems. That era is coming to an end. The impacts of climate change are already being felt, we may now be beyond the peak of oil production, and the natural systems that support life are straining under increasing global consumption. Life in the future is going to be very different from today. As resources become scarce there will inevitably be a transition towards a low energy, low consumption society, and that means a lot of changes. Transition Town Cheltenham aims to ensure that those changes are positive ones, as we build the resilience we need to meet our needs and live healthy and meaningful lives in the challenging times ahead.

What we are doing

Transition Town Cheltenham has a number of working groups which are exploring how to meet needs using minimal energy and resources. These needs range from the need for food, shelter and warmth, to the need for companionship, purpose and meaning in life. The groups are intensely practical - participants gain skills in growing food in organic gardens, making clothes from curtains, or insulating a house. At the same time, the groups provide a space to think about the future and build the kind of close-knit communities where people look after each other in difficult times. All groups come together for the ongoing task of creating an Energy Descent Action Plan for Cheltenham - a blueprint for how to live enjoyable and meaningful lives in a time when resources are becoming increasingly scarce and the climate increasingly unstable. While acting locally, Transition Town Cheltenham also thinks globally, modelling the aspiration to be more, not have more, in a finite world.

Some facts about Transition Town Cheltenham
Joining: Anyone who lives, works or studies in Cheltenham can join - just email info@transitiontowncheltenham.org.uk and you will be added to our Transition Town Cheltenham email group (we use Google Groups). You’ll get occasional emails with information about what’s going on, but always have the option to turn the emails off and check the website instead.
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Meetings: There are general meetings where all members are invited and can express their ideas and opinions. Transition Town policy and direction is agreed at these general meetings, and decisions are made by general consensus.
Fewer Cars Steering Group: TTC is facilitated by a Steering Group of up to 10 people, including representatives of the working groups. Anyone can join the Steering Group if the current members all agree, and decisions are made by consensus.

Money: There is a treasurer who looks after funds, and funds are available to the working groups for projects that help prepare for the future. Any big decisions about money are discussed in the general meetings.

 

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Leaving: To leave Transition Town Cheltenham, just send an email to info@transitiontowncheltenham.org.uk  and you’ll be removed from the members list and email group.
Working Groups: If you’ve joined Transition Town Cheltenham then you can join one or more of the working groups (like the Energy Group or Food Group). You’ll be put on that group’s own email list, where you’ll get information about meetings and events and can join in discussions. Anyone can set up a new working group in consultation with the Steering Group.
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Want to know more?
See our helpful TTC leaflet, and get in touch.

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History

The transition movement in Cheltenham started as a Vision 21 project in 2009 when Vision 21 received a grant of £5,000 from Cheltenham Borough Council to fund the appointment of a Transition Town Network Co-ordinator for one year of which Vision 21 match funded.

Vision 21 appointed Alison Crane as Co-ordinator who with Cathy Green, Trustee of Vision 21, organised free information evenings on the Transition Town ethos which included talks, films, the sharing information, ideas and skills.

At the General Meeting on 12 June 2011 the members agreed the new Transition Town Cheltenham Constitution, and the original Core Group was disbanded and a new Steering Group for TTC agreed.

In 2010 the Council agreed to fund a further year with the purpose of supporting the Officer to set up a Transition Town Group for Cheltenham. The newly formed group is now established as a separate organisation in it's own right under the wider Transition Towns umbrella. The new group organised a phenomenal number of events in its first few months.
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Transition Town Cheltenham is independent, unaligned with any political parties or faith groups, and receives funding only from public bodies or ethical non-profit organisations. Details of all funding are published on the website.
 
       

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