Monday, January 31, 2011

Make you voice heard - save our forests...

Defra has started the consultation period (it runs to 21st April 2011) on the Government's plans to sell off our forests.

Why not tell them what you think ? ....

oh yes, by the way its the UN's International Year of the Forests .. who says the government does not have a sense of humour!

You can still support 360degree campaign - This Wednesday there is a crunch vote in Parliament. MPs will vote on a motion demanding a rethink of plans to sell our national forests.

If enough of us contact our MPs now, we've got a real chance of winning this vote! So let’s make sure MPs are getting thousands of messages with one very clear request: vote to save our forests this Wednesday.

It's quick and easy to email your MP, click here to send them a message:

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Deal's Blue Mermaid back Hugh's Big Fish Fight

As you may have seen from the local press this week, one of our local chippy's has stepped up to the mark to support Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall's Big Fish Fight.

The Blue Mermaid Fish Bar in Victoria Road, Deal has been selling locally sourced battered Mackerel since last last Thursday.

Owner Sam Sidhu said "the Mackerel has been selling well since Thursday. On Saturday we actually sold more Mackerel than Cod. It is proving to be very popular as a lunchtime snack and its got our customers talking about the issue"

Customers to the Blue Mermaid were also treated to free tasters of sprats fresh off the beach at Deal. Sam wants to make seasonal, local sourced fish part of his menu. He hopes to be selling locally fished Pollock from April onwards.

As Sam says "locally caught fish is more sustainable. Its better for the local economy as well as better quality and a cheaper meal to our customers".

Sam's sign in support of BFF
Hugh's campaign against wasteful fish discards, getting people to try fish other than cod or tuna and getting Chippies to try something different like Mackerel has had a great impact nationally. So far over 632 thousand people have signed to support the campaign.

Why not drop in the Blue Mermaid and try some Mackerel ? You can support the campaign locally by approaching your local cafe or chippie. You can find our Deal With It Poster here

First beach clean of January 2011

On a January Sunday morning, with a bitter NE wind, a harden crew of 17 from Deal With It completed the first Deal beach clean of 2011.

In just over an hour we managed to pick up and log over 130kgs of rubbish from the beach.

Deal Beach Warden, Wendy Boorman said "It was a great turnout for such a cold day. We picked up a record amount in such a short time. The information we collate from the beach cleans is invaluable to the work of Marine Conservation Society which campaigns to keep our coasts clean and healthy."

The next clean will be on Sunday 24th April.

Well done all!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Victoria's Green Matters - 27th Jan 2011

Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent Mercury:
There can be many reasons for an increase in the price of food; there are often floods here or drought there, increases in oil and fertiliser prices, climate change and changes in land use. All these can be said to cause shortages and so trigger price rises. It is straightforward for us to refuse to buy goods that we consider to be too expensive. We can easily choose to buy something else.
What if there is nothing else? It is difficult for us to imagine a life without the vast choices that we have today. For many people in the world there is no choice and if they cannot afford the price of food in the market they go hungry and they may go hungry for weeks.

It has become apparent that banks, hedge funds and financiers have not only caused the sub-prime mortgage crisis of 2006 but have now started to speculate on food and in so doing have driven up global food prices. This has caused food riots in more than 20 countries and governments have had to subsidise staple goods and ban exports. It may not matter to us if speculators cause the price of coffee to rise by 20% in three days just by betting on the price falling. It matters to the grower who cannot sell his crop. Global unrest is a natural result.

We have come to have little respect for bankers. Since the economic crisis, all we have wanted is regulation to stop it happening again. Speculation on food prices must count as one of the most unprincipled activities imaginable.   

People in the developing world have many problems. There are many reasons why there are food shortages and they do not need speculation to cause more problems.

The New Home Front: Total war on climate change ?

The Green Party and the New Economics Foundation have published paper 'The New Home Front' which argues that the UK needs to mobilise the scale that happened in WW2 to deal with climate change.

What do you think?

From their joint press release:

"The Battle of Britain was fought and won mainly in the skies over Kent. The battle for a sustainable and prosperous Kent and Medway requires a similar effort as the recent report, THE NEW HOME FRONT, suggests. We can grow more food in Kent. We can extend our forest cover. We can produce energy from all our buildings. We can raise our recycling levels. And each step towards sustainability will create new long term employment. But we cannot achieve high levels of useful employment if the Government continues to undermine front line public spending through its failure to collect taxes which are due (1). Similarly, our new 'Home Front' effort needs the additional revenues which could be obtained by closing all tax havens in British jurisdictions.(2)"

The paper can be found at

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

KCC: Renewal Energy in Kent Report 2010

KCC's Select Committee on renewal energy in Kent report for 2010 is out - get your copy here

Trains4Deal: Open the Gate!


When we get the HS service to Deal and Sandwich (and we're convinced we will before too long), it will be critical to improve access to the stations.

We've seen the problems at Dover Priory, where the surge in demand for car parking has spilled out into the surrounding streets - and it;s very difficult to find anywhere to park. (Did you know - 65% of Dover to London tickets sold are now via HS?)

At Deal, we're pushing for the disused Network Rail land next to the down platform (arriving from London) to be opened up in advance of our HS service.

Our "OPEN THE GATE" campaign asks for immediate action to re-open the existing station access road (see  ).

Next step is to use this space to create:
- more badly-needed car- and taxi-parking spaces,;
- a pick-up / drop-off zone for elderly and mobility-impaired travellers;
- better bus stops nearer the station
- safer access to walk and ride bikes to the station, which many commuters and leisure travellers will welcome.

We're also saying this could be a useful link in the local cycle network, creating a safe off-road cycling- and walking-path towards Fowlmead for all the tourists who will  come down on the HS train to explore our attractive coast and countryside, as well as for local families.

We're supporting this case at a CYCLE FORUM meeting at the ROYAL HOTEL on Deal seafront on Mon 31st Jan, 6.16 to 8pm (open to all). 

We'll be pressing to improve access to Deal station - critical for when we get the high-speed service - and for safer cycle- and walking-routes to Fowlmead.

More at http://tunyurl/cycleforum - if you ride a bike and want better cycle routes, please come!


We pass on the message from Relyon Transport without recommendation or endorsement from Trains4deal - we haven't tried it.

It might be of help while we're still working to get a direct HS service, for which, of course, it is no substitute - let us know what you think.

Secure Parking for HS Rail link just £4 per day!.
Dear Commuters!
We are writing to advise you of alternative 24 hour secure parkingarrangements available in Dover for those wishing to use the HS service from Dover Priory to London.Secure parking and free shuttle bus service is available at Family runbusiness Relyon Transport ( trading for 26 years ) in Poulton Close, CoombeValley Road in Dover CT17 0HL.
The cost is just £12 for three days parking and £4 per day thereafter andcan be made easily by debit or credit card.Customers wishing to use this service are advised to arrive at the depot, 15
minutes before their HS Service is due when journey time to the station by
free shuttle bus takes about 10 minutes. Return transportation back to the
depot can be booked in advance or ordered by mobile phone once the train is
a few stops from Dover Priory station.
All Commuters will save themselves time if they book in advance although
this is not essential.

Secure parking Bookings and enquiries can be made with Dave or Rosie by
phone email or fax at the following:
email :
Phone 01304 201227
Fax 01304 241058


best wishes,

Tom Rowland / Ian Killbery
Join the rail-users' group for the Deal area
Campaigning for High Speed trains to Deal - NOW!
Join the trains4deal group on Facebook

Saturday, January 22, 2011

EcoBuild 2011 - 1-3rd March

This year EcoBuild is between 1-3rd March. This is a major sustainable building exhibition in London - well worth a visit if you are a small heating business, builder or home owner just interested in the latest Eco-tech for your House.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Ecologist: Laura Sandys MP: On Food Security

From the Ecologist:
Sandwich's MP speaks out on the need for food security.

Laura Sandys MP: why food security must be viewed as a strategic threat

Laura Sandys

18th January, 2011

With cheap food pricing, over-reliance on imports, and the pressures of a growing population, the UK's food security is set to rise up the national agenda. The Coalition Government must be prepared for the challenges ahead

For too long we have been avoiding one of the biggest threats to this country’s domestic security – food. Deluded by cheap food prices, importing over 50 per cent of what is on our supermarket shelves, and dismissing the calls from UK farmers and fishermen to focus more on national food production; food insecurity is an issue set to rise up the national agenda. It is time that Government understood and prepared for the challenge ahead.

I am pleased that our Government scientists are taking the issue of food security seriously with the future launch of the Foresight Report on Global Food and Farming Futures. Following a 20 per cent drop in Britain’s food self sufficiency over 10 years, the report will constitute an important and timely step in addressing the threat to Britain’s food security. Only last week, the UN’s Food and Agricultural Organisation reported record food price hikes of 4.2 per cent - double the national wage increase.

Food is a truly globalised business – a fact which enhances Britain’s vulnerability given its reliance on food imports. Events in recent weeks will undoubtedly be reflected in our pockets. Australia – the fourth largest producer of wheat – has lost tons of its crops in floods; conflict in the Ivory Coast has limited cocoa exports; and poor harvests due to La Nina have reduced global food supplies. Such events reflect in world food prices and result in greater unpredictability in securing food staples.

Trade protectionism
A new era of trade protectionism in food could well be on the horizon - not for economic gain, but to ensure domestic stability. Policy makers have perhaps lost sight of the domestic, regional and international tensions that could arise should access to food be curtailed. Only last week, the rising price of onions resulted in India banning exports to Pakistan which worsened tensions with its neighbour. On Friday, the world witnessed Tunisia’s people overturn their President as a peak in global food prices contributed to national unrest. Whitehall must take heed of these international lessons and prepare.

But just how vulnerable is the UK, and how should we go about securing our future food supply? We must assess the risk – a risk that is growing and will only accelerate exponentially due to a global population reaching 9 billion by 2050. Further, over 25 per cent of the world’s productive land will be lost due to rising sea levels and desertification. The government should halt development on grade one agricultural land – the means and resources for food production must be regarded as a national priority.

There is also a role for our defence capacity in safeguarding Britain’s food security. Policy makers must carefully consider what threats might arise due to resource scarcity. Piracy is one. Last year alone, pirates abducted 217 merchant ships. Even the British Chamber of Shipping has stated: 'Climate change and scarcity of resources will bring unknown and destabilising influences at sea – as we all fight for vanishing resources.' Although it is presently the Horn of Africa that is blighted by pirates, if food is to become a more valued commodity and energy costs are to increase, piracy could soon plague other major trade routes.

Safeguarding supplies
Special Forces with specialist knowledge could provide logistical assistance to support our vessels transporting vital food supplies. Our aircraft carriers and frigates could assist Britain’s food importing vessels by protecting from the threats of piracy and keeping trade routes open.

But some of the answers also lie closer to home. We must rethink the way we use food. I was recently part of a TV programme that highlighted that up to 30 per cent of food – good food – is thrown away every year. Supermarkets reject fruit and vegetables that do not fit their so called 'aesthetic standards'; sell by dates encourage us at home to throw away food that is perfectly fresh; and meat cuts such as offal are discarded as we have forgotten how to eat or cook them. In my constituency of Thanet, fishermen are compelled to discard 50 per cent of their catch due to an outmoded quota system.


First 'Passivhaus' developed in UK

Wimbish, Essex - a UK first for rural sustainability
A Hastoe Housing Association development in Wimbish, Essex is on target to be the first rural affordable Passivhaus development in the UK. The aim is to complete the scheme this Spring, then receive accreditation from the Passivhaus Institut (Germany) by early Summer 2012.

The scheme has received investment from the HCA via a grant of £830,000 from the National Affordable Housing Programme. The scheme is being built on a rural exception site, with the 14 shared ownership and social rented homes being reserved for those people with strong local connections to the community.

The homes will require little or no energy use for heating or cooling. They will have excellent thermal comfort and ventilation and low primary energy use, meaning reduced living costs for residents. The buildings will also achieve high quality construction standards and reach Level Four of the Code for Sustainable Homes meaning that they will be super energy efficient.

The team visited Germany, the birthplace of Passivhaus, last year to find out more about the concept. They viewed Passivhaus homes where the technology has been tried, tested and proven to be successful in European climate conditions.

More details at HCA

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Kent woods under threat in sell off ?

The United Nations has declared 2011 as the International Year of Forests,

It has invited governments, organisations and individuals to do all they can to raise public awareness of the key role of forests and sustainable forest management in building a greener, more equitable and sustainable future.

How ironic when our Government plans to sell off as much as 150,000 hectares of forest and woodland in England in the biggest sale of public land for nearly 60 years.

Local Woods and Forests that could be under threat in Kent are Clowes Wood, part of The Blean near Canterbury, Kings Wood near Challock and Bedgebury National Pinetum & Forest near Cranbrook.

The Forestry Commission has done an excellent job in recent years in making woodlands much more accessible to all of us; whether we are walkers, mountain bikers, wheelchair users or horse-riders. Currently all Forestry Commission land is managed to Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) standards - well above the standards required by law. Higher standards of stewardship mean that even those publicly owned woodlands that deliver substantial profits for the taxpayer through timber are also havens for wildlife. This would not be compulsory with privately owned forests. New owners could fence our forests and would not be required to maintain access paths as they do now. 

If you wish to protect our woods and forests for future generations write to your local MP and sign the on-line petition at

Victoria's Green Matters - 20th Jan 2011

Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent Mercury:
How is your campaign against plastic bags coming along? Maybe you don’t have one. As I go through the checkout at the local supermarket, I am often quite shocked by the number of people who have a trolley full of goods packed into numerous new plastic bags.

While the retail trade has made much of using disposable plastic bags which they advertise as ‘biodegradable’, there are many millions of discarded plastic bags around the world which cause a danger to wildlife everyday. When the bags biodegrade, they do so into tiny balls of plastic, which end up on the seabed, can be swallowed by marine life and cause death. The UN estimates they account for the deaths of 100,000 marine mammals each year.

A better approach is to buy an ‘everlasting’ bag from the supermarket, which will be replaced free of charge when it wears out. Another option, for the ladies anyway, is always to carry a thin cotton bag in your handbag when you go shopping. And no excuse for you, gentlemen, one will fit into your coat pocket quite easily! If you shop by car, it is easy to carry bags with you – just don’t forget to take them into the shop!

At New Year, the Italian government took the forward-looking step of banning all retailers from handing out plastic bags to customers. A group of supermarkets are having biodegradable plastic bags manufactured for them but most shops will opt for the re-usable bags. Stylish Italians are not keen on old-fashioned shopping bags and some are opting for modish shopping trolleys.

As resources become scarcer and oil is less easily available to be used to manufacture plastic bags, we will have to get accustomed to using bags made from durable but far less dangerous materials than plastics.

Canterbury Green Economy

A greener economy: time for change?

From our colleagues in Transition Town Whitstable:
C4B and the Canterbury Partnership Environment Group are jointly holding a ‘green’ conference and exhibition at Augustine House, Rhodaus Town, Canterbury, on Wednesday, 23 February, from 8.30am to 1.30pm. The event, entitled ‘A greener economy: time for change?’, will include presentations on sustainable transport and development, tax breaks for businesses, and building a greener economy in the district.
Seats are limited and will be allocated on a strictly first come, first served basis, so if you are interested in attending, please email to reserve a place.
For further information please see the flyer or visit the website at

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

380 degrees petition against the Forest Sell off

The government is planning a massive sell off of our national forests. They could be auctioned and fenced off, run down, logged or turned into golf courses and holiday villages.

We can't let that happen. We need to stop these plans. National treasures like the The Forest of Dean, Sherwood Forest and The New Forest could be sold off. Once they are gone, they will be lost forever.

A huge petition will force the government to rethink its plans. If we can prove how strongly the public are against this, they will have to back down. Please sign the petition now.

Find out more: Visit the save our forests action centre to find out more about the forest sell off and download campaign leaflets and posters.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Top 10… ways to eat fish sustainably

Great article from By Katharine Helmore from the Ecologist
Support Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall's Big Fish Fight by making sure that the fish you eat is ethically caught and sourced from sustainable fisheries
Fish - the way we consume it and the way we catch it - is a hot topic right now. Horrified by the way that the Common Fishing Policy (CFP) has resulted in around half of all fish caught in British waters being thrown back dead or dying, TV chef Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall and a host of celebrity supporters have begun a campaign called Fish Fight to end the waste.
But the effects of bycatch are just a small part of the problem. Overfishing has seen cod stocks decline by 86 per cent over the last century and bluefin tuna placed at risk of extinction. Between 20 and 100 million sharks are killed each year thanks to increased demand for shark fin soup and thousands more die in the purse seine nets used by tuna fishermen. And that’s not all. Aquaculture is one of the worst marine polluters and requires thousands of tons of fishmeal – mostly anchovies, herring and sprats – to sustain its farmed fish. Other species are transported long distances – snow crab from Alaska for example, or tilapia from Vietnam – creating an enormous carbon footprint.

Despite this, fish remains one of the world’s most popular foods. So can eating fish ever be sustainable? Here are our top 10 ways to make sure the fish you eat comes without a side order of guilt.

1. Choose your species carefully
The Marine Conservation Society website regularly updates a list of fish to avoid and fish that are fine to eat. Fish that are safe to buy include dab, pouting, organic, farmed salmon and hand-picked cockles, while conger eel, swordfish and plaice are all off the menu. If you must eat cod, make sure it comes from the north-east Arctic or eastern Baltic, where stocks are healthy.

2. Try something different
Buying a wide range of fish is crucial for maintaining current fish stocks and protecting dwindling species. Food writer and fishmonger, Mitch Tonks, warns that if everyone switches from one species to another, the marine balance will be further upset. ‘Gurnard has been championed for a while now,’ he says, ‘but in reality the landings of it are small in comparison to other species and its yield is very low. It is one of the most delicious fish in the sea but perhaps it should join the ranks of other good fish like sole rather than become the next big thing that we should be eating.’ Bruce Rennie, head chef at The Gurnard's Head in Cornwall also recommends buying bigger fillets, as smaller ones tend to come from immature fish. 'As a rule of thumb, if the fish are not big enough to have reproduced and contributed to their species, they should be avoided,' he says. 'It is negligent to eat fish that haven’t had a chance.'
3. Buy local, seasonal fish
Support your local fishermen. Not only does local have a smaller carbon footprint, it’s usually cheaper too. Mackerel is readily available throughout the year and isn’t endangered. Sardines and pilchard are abundant in the seas off the coast of Cornwall while sea bream and sea bass are available in the English Channel. Markets offer a wider and fresher variety of locally sourced fish than supermarkets. ‘Cod and skate are mostly caught this time of year,’ says Jonny Dunhill of Ramsgate fishmonger, Eddie Gilberts. ‘In the warmer months bass, mackerel, plaice and Dover sole are landed in large quantities.’

4. Find a good fishmonger
Your fishmonger is the best source of information on what’s in season and how the fish has been caught. Most good fishmongers will source their fish from sustainable fisheries and will be able to recommend different species to try. (PS Both our Fishmongers in Deal are supporting the campaign Ed)

5. Make sure it’s line caught
Poor labelling on supermarket shelves can mean finding line-caught fish can be like trying to find a needle in a haystack. Ask staff at the fish counter and leave it if they can't tell you exactly how the fish was caught. Avoid bigeye and bluefin tuna, both of which are endangered and opt for line or poll caught albacore or skipjack tuna.  Greenpeace has released a supermarket league of the most ethically sourced tinned tuna with Sainsburys, Marks and Spencer and Waitrose at the top. Line-caught pollack, lythe, black bream, porgy and sea bream are among some of the best white fish alternatives to cod.

Climate Change conference at our German Twin...

From colleagues in the Deal-St Omer Twinning association - Deal has exchanged a letter of friendship with Detmold - and deal's twin town Saint-Omer will be represented at this conference we understand as will the very green belgian municipality of Hasselt ... Contact Sarah for further details

"The city of Detmold wants to organise a climate protection conference in autumn of 2011. The conference shall happen 29th of September until 2nd of October or 13th until 16th of October 2011.

Information: The conference will be made for Mayors, experts in the communes, public services for electric, gas and water,
factories and organisation which are working in “Climate protection” an interested citizen or volunteers. To reduce expenses Detmold will make an application to get money from the EU-Citizen-Program 1.2 Network at the EACEA - Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency in Brussels. Deadline is: 1.of February. If your city wants to take part, I must get your answer and the dates until 12th of January. To: c.thomalefriesenhan@

In the program there are speeches and workshops and visiting factories: The different activities for climate protection in the twin towns.

Climate protection from industries and craft producer in the commune, Mobility in the city for example: local public transport in Hasselt (Marc Verachtert)

(Energetically) improvement of accommodation – centre of gravity are difficult faces of buildings.

Speech: renewable energy / public services
From intention to conversion – The way from the political decision to action?
Excursion (intended): fermentation plant, wind energy plant, wood-fired power station (Pellets), sports hall build as a passive house.And please tell me something abour your climate protection activities. 

Viele Grüße / Kind regards
Charlotte Thomale-Friesenhan


Stadt Detmold

8.4 Städtepartnerschaften

Marktplatz 5

32756 Detmold


Sunday, January 16, 2011

Deal Cycle Forum 31st Jan

You are invited to an open CYCLE FORUM MEETING at the Royal Hotel (Map Room) on Monday 31st January 2011 starting at 6.15pm (ends 8.00pm).

Anyone can come -  we need the Cycle Forum back again - this time as a voluntary group, an independent voice for local cyclists of all sorts in the Dover, Deal and Sandwich area.

We aim to lobby KCC Highways and other local councils, to improve and maintain our safe cycle routes, get better facilities for cyclists, and generally encourage people to use their bikes.
The Dover District Cycling Plan, produced in 2008 after lots of consultation, points the way forward.

Good progress has been made on some aspects:  
- the River Dour Cycle route in Dover is underway, 
- the growing popularity of Fowlmead  Country Park, 
- increased usage of the coastal cycle route in Deal and Sandwich

But there remain big gaps in our local network of safe cycle routes, and progress has stalled on inland routes generally. We need family-safe cycle routes to Fowlmead, into Deal town centre, and an off-road inland route between Deal and Sandwich - you can probably add to the list.

And we need to lobby vigorously for proper maintenance of cycle paths - in fact, generally revive the momentum of progress. 
KCC Highways offer to attend the meetings, so we can keep up to date with their plans and feed in our comments; they'll be there on Mon 31st.

Please let me know whether you can come to help get the new Forum started on Monday 31st, and whether you will represent an organisation (if any) - and do pass this on to anyone else who may be interested. 

There's more about the Forum at this temporary website,

best wishes,

Ian Killbery
Tel: 01304-362569

PS please reply if you can come, so we can plan for numbers. The Royal Hotel on Deal seafront has kindly offered us use of their Map Room FREE on this occasion. Coffee will be served half-way through the meeting, and of course the Royal's bar is open. There should be space to lock up bikes safely at the back.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Support Hugh's FishFight here in Deal

Why not get a poster up at home or ask you local cafe or Chippie to take one ?

You can download the PDF from here

Thursday, January 13, 2011

International Women's Day at the Pines Calyx - March 8th

This event has been cancelled ... sorry

Come to the Pines Calyx and Gardens on March 8, and be part of history.

Celebrate women and their achievements - March 8 is the centenary of International Women's Day

Just some of the women who will be there: -

Trudy Thompson, Bricks and Bread - Trudy is an ex racing driver. She has designed and built her own Eco-houses, and then created a Sustainable Living Centre in Aldershot, which is a one stop shop for people from all backgrounds to come and find out about Sustainable products and services. She has 18 franchises across the country, and growing.

Chiara Vagnarelli - Regional Director of "Fresh Ideas" Fresh Ideas helps organisations, communities and individual set up and run their own food initiatives.

Bernie Morgan, CEO of the Community Finance Development Association I just love this one-liner on Bernie Morgan's website: "She inspires, informs and entertains her audiences by drawing on her own experiences of transforming herself from a housewife to the CEO of a sector worth £¾bn. In under eight yearswebsite"

Stephanie Hayman - a serial entrepreneur, who set up "Wholeschool Meals" and now supplies 21 schools, with an ambition to see this model replicated across the UK and to see all schools in control of what they feed our children as well being shareholders in the company.

Yvonne Fuchs - Co-founder of Brilliant Women Yvonne is a Branding and Marketing Professional and also runs a Business Support group in both Whitstable and Islington.

The event has a cost of £49 ... more details from

Deal Beach Clean - Sunday 30th Jan

Deal With It are supporting the Marine Conservation Society's 'Beach Clean' of Deal Beach on Sunday 30th January

Meet up at the front of Deal Pier at 9am. Equipment supplied.

Colleagues from Walmer RNLI are organising a 'Welly Walk' on the same morning

More info on the MCS's work see

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Fish video

Link in case you cannot see embedded video

Protect Kingsdown Beach

From the East Kent Mercury "An action plan for an important stretch of shingle beach between Kingsdown and Walmer - described as a rare gem - is due to be launched at a public meeting in the village.

The draft wildlife management proposals to conserve and enhance the shoreline has been developed by Leonie Seymour and Kirk Alexander of the White Cliffs Countryside Partnership, with the help of funding from the Kent Biodiversity Action Plan.

They say the plans highlight the importance of the site and are appealing for local people to get involved, not only for their own enjoyment but also to protect and enhance the delicate wildlife balance of the beach.

The meeting will be held at 7.30pm at Kingsdown Village Hall, Upper Street, on Tuesday, January 18, and is being organised by the Kingsdown Conservation Group.

Group acting chairman Philip Evemy said: "Kingsdown is a very special place and a rare gem on the English coastline. read further here

Something fishy....

Two very successful campaigns underway:

(1) Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall has made a plea for support for a campaign to try and stop wasteful fish discards.

Half of the fish caught in the North Sea is thrown back overboard dead due to the current quota system imposed by the EU Common Fisheries Policy.

The Fish Fight Campaign will officially launch with a broadcast of “Hugh’s Fish Fight” presented by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall in January 2011.
Thousands have already signed up to support the cause, and Client Earth is also on board.

If you are at all interested in the future of our oceans, and the future of fish as food, then please go to and check out phase 1 of the campaign.

 2) Greenpeace's Tuna Campaign. As you may have read we were all set to take action against Tesco this weekend when the unexpected happened. We have produced a league table of the best and worst offenders against tuna (fishing with fish attraction devices, seine purse nets etc) and had identified that Tesco were the worst own-brand supplier. When Tesco learned of this, and that Greenpeace were preparing a nationwide weekend of direct action against them, they agreed to change all their own-brand tuna to rod and line by the end of 2012. Good for them. But it means our campaigning has to take a different tack. We will be doing it a bit differently but will now target Princes tuna in the hope of making them see the light.

The Tesco result is great news, it really shows that we can make a difference.

Victoria's Green Matters - 14th Jan 2011

Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent Mercury:
Did you know that the cosmetics that you use are likely to have been tested on animals? Maybe you don’t think that it matters. Do you think that it is right, in this day and age, that we submit other sentient creatures to pain and distress just so that we can consider a cosmetic suitable for us to use? Something to think about.

A European law, designed to ban the sale in Europe of any cosmetics tested on animals anywhere in the world, should have come into effect in 2013. It has been delayed by anything up to four years because replacement tests not involving animals have not been developed by the cosmetics industry. Neil Parish, MP, a member of the parliamentary group on animal welfare, has demanded an end “to needless animal testing purely for the commercial gain of industry”.

In 2004 the European Cosmetics Directive banned the testing of all ingredients on animals. Contrary legislation in the European Union has meant that chemicals that have been tested on animals for safety under one set of regulations have ended up being used in cosmetics that should have been subject to the 2004 legislation. We cannot now be sure that products with the relevant labelling can be trusted. It is also true that many animal tests do not correctly predict the action of chemicals on human beings. The European commission has great hope that advances in molecular and cellular biology will produce alternatives to animal testing and provide safer, more accurate and kinder results.

Until the legislation becomes law, we can only strive to take as much trouble as possible to ensure that we are not contributing to animal suffering. We must not buy products that we know to have been tested on animals. Unfortunately, most mass produced cosmetics are made by the most unscrupulous manufacturers.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Mayor's Transition reception...

Deal Town Council's Mayor Ben Bano hosted a reception on Monday 10th January on 'Transition Deal'.

About twenty attended the networking event. They listened to Rosie Rechter describe how important it is for the local community and economy  to develop a sustainable vision for the town.

The Mayor invited 'Deal With It' to address the full council later in the year.

Thanks to Ben and the town hall staff for organising the event.

Transition Training...

The transition movement runs a two day course on the transition process.

Next dates are 5th & 6th March and 17th & 18th September - both would be in London.

Details are at

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Canterbury Climate Fair 14th & 15th May 2011

The second Canterbury Climate & Fair Trade Market will be held in St George's Street, Canterbury on Saturday 14th and Sunday 15th May, 2011

This year's theme is climate chnage & Fair Trade full details at 

They are taking bookings now for stalls and Deal With It with hopefully the Deal Bicycle Generator will be there in a 'Transition Village'

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

DWI Letter to DDC - No to Sholden development

Dear Dover District Council,

I am writing on behalf of all the members of our group to express our profound dismay over the plans for development of land in the Sholden area, as referred to above.

It is difficult to believe that any council would even consider developing prime agricultural land for housing when we are entering a period of uncertainty with regards to the changing climate and the arrival of peak oil. We will need all our agricultural land to feed our population during the coming years.

While questions have been raised about flooding, traffic congestion and the lack of new infrastructure, Dover District Council still continues to consider these plans.

Despite objections from many people, via petitions and public meetings, and the plans being turned down by Deal Town Council, Dover District Council still continues to consider them.

We can only hope that by persisting to object to these developments and illustrating all the drawbacks, notice will be taken and planning permission refused.

Yours sincerely,

Victoria Nicholls.
Secretary, Deal With It.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Cycloutourism week in Saint Omer - July 2011

Deal's twin town in France - St Omer has a Cycloutourism week between 17th to 24th July 2011.

There are several events covering family to more competitive Sportive events from 30km to 120km rides. 

See link for details:

Victoria's Green Matters - 6th Jan 2011

Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent Mercury:
Have you re-fuelled your car recently? Quite a shock, isn’t it, to see petrol and diesel prices rising on what seems to be an almost daily basis? The threat of the ‘£5 gallon’ seems a distant memory with prices for diesel, in particular, well above this. There is an increase in fuel duty and VAT to come by 4 January 2011 that is set to add about 3.5p per litre to your chosen fuel. These increases reverberate through all of life as increased fuel costs put up the price of goods we need to buy.

So, whom do we blame? It is a difficult mix of lots of things that can alter the price of oil. The failing global economy has a lot to answer for; the pound has hit a three-month low against the dollar and inflation has risen to 3.3% while, in the US, a second round of economic stimulus packages has strengthened demand. The old economic adage of ‘supply and demand’ has done its job and oil prices have soared.

Perhaps we should look at this another way. We know that we have reached peak oil – in other words we have come to the end of the era of cheap oil and so we must get used to there being less oil available for the many uses that we accept as normal. If we determine that we will use less oil in our everyday lives, then the oil that is left will last longer. Using less of all the fossil fuels will also help to slow the inexorable rise in global temperatures that threaten the lives of so many people.

So, if you use your car less, you will not only save yourself some money but you will help to reduce the production of carbon dioxide and maybe the climate will not change quite as much.