Friends of the Earth and National Trust lobby MPs on Localism Bill

The Houses of Parliament

Photo by Isofarro (CC BY-NC 2.0)

On 12th October, Friends of the Earth staff and local group members along with representatives of Living Streets and the National Trust gathered in Committee Room 18 at the Houses of Parliament to give MPs their views on the Localism Bill and the National Planning Policy Framework (NPFF) which are both currently making their way through Parliament. Among the Friends of the Earth contingent was Denis Walker, Co-ordinator of the South East Essex local group.
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Orchard and Garden Open Day 2011

Apples on the treeThe environment is under pressure. From oil spills to floods and droughts, our natural world needs an independent voice. To make sure Friends of the Earth have enough funds to take on big polluters, South East Essex Friends of the Earth (SEEFoE) hosted an open Orchard and Garden Event at Mount Holly, Downham on 1st October.

The Mount Holly Orchard was planted by a Quaker family in the early 1900’s. It contains apple varieties that were planted in Victorian times. It is one of the few orchards growing original Victorian varieties. A number of the varieties have still not been identified. In the course of the restoration, a new orchard extension has been planted. This extension is entirely made up of additional historic varieties that might be interesting for transitioners and permaculturists as they have long storing capabilities.

The current owners are self-sufficient and have started a small organic Market Garden. We raised £185.50 from the day, which will go to national Friends of the Earth.
Entrance to Mount Holly

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Michael Woolcott – 1933-2011

Michael (leftmost) at a recent successful action to support a wind farm at Middlewick

Michael (leftmost) at a recent successful action to support a wind farm at Middlewick

It is with great regret that South East Essex Friends of the Earth have to report the recent sad death of their member, Michael Woolcott.

He was an active member of the group, campaigning on local and national environmental issues. He regularly attending meetings in Southend and London and as a keen sailor, had a particular interest in marine ecology.

He leaves a widow, Maria, and two sons, Paul and Robert.

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Campaign against Belton Way Hospice gathers pace

Residents of Leigh-on-Sea joined forces today to protest against proposals to build on greenbelt land near Leigh station.

Havens Hospices want to build a new £15m hospice on the site, but there are many brownfield sites in the area that could be used instead.

Please email for more information and to join the campaign.

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The death of ‘He who shall not be named’

Alan Simpson, a former Labour MP and advisor on renewable energy who now advises Friends of the Earth, responds to George Monbiot’s recent article ‘Corporate Power? No Thanks’

It was as if George Monbiot had cued in the government to demonstrate his point about singing from the nuclear hymn sheet. Energy Minister, Charles Hendry, duly surfaced to proclaim that Britain was “on the brink of the biggest nuclear renaissance since the 1950s”, that Britain was to become “the number-one destination to invest in new nuclear” and that “nuclear is the cheapest low-carbon source of electricity around”. Of course its a lie, but don’t accuse the Minister of being unable to read a script. Continue reading

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Stop climate change being dropped from the National Curriculum

A government adviser reviewing the school national curriculum is recommending that climate change be excluded from the science curriculum.

We think that all young people need to learn about one of the biggest issues facing the planet.

If you agree please sign the email petition set up by People and Planet.

For more details, please see the article “Climate change should be excluded from curriculum, says adviser” on the Guardian website.

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SE Essex Women’s Environmental Network’s Morsbag ‘pod’

WITH Recycle Week coming up (June 20 – 26), we would like to tell people about Morsbags and the ‘pod’ which we have set up.

Most people are aware of the impact plastic bags have on the environment but perhaps not so many people know about the damage they do to wildlife, and especially to fish as plastic bags become ever more of a feature of our seas. Continue reading

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James Duddridge MP: Biofuels



Mr Denis Walker
Southend on Sea

Our ref: RSE8241

8th June 2011

Dear Mr Walker,

Thank you for contacting me about biofuels.

Biofuels have an important role to play in efforts to tackle climate change, if they are produced in a sustainable way, and have a part to play in promoting the security of energy supply. This role is particularly important where there is no viable alternative fuel on the horizon. Continue reading

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