Tag Archives: Featured

Wiveliscombe on map for electric vehicle charging

An electric vehicle charging point is now available in Wiveliscombe, serving local residents and visitors.

The charging point is shown on Zap Map and the Pod Point network. It is located in the top part of Croft Way car park behind the Community Centre. To use, download the Pod Point app from the Apple App Store or Google Play. Two cars can be charged at the same time, with 11 kW supplied from each Type 2 connector. Charging costs 32p per kWh.

The project was first proposed by Wivey Action on Climate and Environment in 2017 and followed a local meeting in 2016. There have been changes and delays due to the merger of district councils and the pandemic, but the charging point is finally available for use.

Electric is the future for cars and the sooner we can transition the better for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. It’s also important that we reduce the need for travelling and cycle, walk or use public transport whenever we can.

Wiveliscombe Community Centre are hosting the charging point and it is connected to their electricity supply, which means some charging will be solar powered from the Brendon Energy solar panels on the roof. The charging point is managed by local volunteers. For further information email: ev@wiveyaction.org.uk

Funding has been provided by grants from Brendon Energy, Somerset West and Taunton Council and Wiveliscombe Town Council.

Shown in the photo above (left to right) are: Francesca Croft*, Julie Mitchell (town councillor), local resident Sue Clowes, Des Hawkins* and Dave Mansell (district councillor for the ward). Dave and Julie organised and now manage the charging point.

*Wiveliscombe Community Centre

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Wildlife-friendly planting provides welcome to Wivey

As part of town recovery projects, an amazing group of volunteers have come together to look after the bank at the back of Croft Way car park. Somerset West and Taunton Council, who own the bank, agreed to this initiative and strimmed back undergrowth and grass encroaching on the footpath. Volunteers have removed brambles and started to plant woodland trees and flowers.

There will be further wildlife and insect friendly planting on the bank, including fruit bushes, bulbs, pollen-rich shrubs and plants for year-round interest. Over time, the bank should develop further into a lovely new feature welcoming people to Wivey.

The volunteer group has also done great work in the herb garden behind the Community Centre. Do take a look at the variety of herbs and flowers, the hazel arch and a willow hedge, all of which should flourish over the coming months. You may also wish to sit on the bench and enjoy the view.

In the photos above (click to view full size) are project leaders Lena Holland and Jon Burgess with officers from SWT’s Open Spaces team.

A steering group is allocating funding from Somerset West and Taunton Council for town centre recovery projects in Wiveliscombe. So far, these have included a contribution to building works at Wiveliscombe Community Centre, hanging baskets in the town centre, umbrellas for those queuing for shops, as well as some costs for planting on the car park bank. The steering group consists of the two Somerset West and Taunton councillors for the Wiveliscombe ward and representatives from the 10 Parishes Business Group, Town Council and Wiveliscombe Area Partnership.

Photos below (click to view full size) show the latest work in progress at the herb garden behind Wiveliscombe Community Centre.

This all builds on work first undertaken to create the community herb garden back in 2013.

Wilding Wivey

Written by Geoff Johnson

We can create amazing wild habitats right here, in and around Wiveliscombe, in which nature can thrive.

Our natural world is in crisis.  We are living in a time of mass extinction, the last being 66 million years ago when an asteroid ended the dinosaurs. This is a terrible tragedy in itself, and extremely dangerous for humankind; we depend on a healthy ecosystem.  We’re not finished yet, but a mammoth effort is required. 

See simple things we can do in our gardens

See resources and references with further information

Image at top shows a small wildlife pond created in a Wiveliscombe garden 4 months ago: already 4 frogs!

UK target for net zero carbon emissions

As one of her last acts as Prime Minister, Theresa May has announced the UK will be the first major economy to set a legal target to stop contributing to climate change.

The target is to reduce the UK’s carbon emissions to net zero by 2050, which is based on a report from the Committee on Climate Change on what is needed to achieve the Paris Agreement’s aim of limiting global warming to no more than 1.5°C. The target is also in line with recommendations from the International Panel for Climate Change, although some argue that the IPCC underestimate climate risks.

CCC-Net Zero by 2050
Click image to view full infographic, from the Committee on Climate Change, on climate impacts, UK action and getting to net zero by 2050.

Further details and different perspectives are given in the following articles:

The UK’s new target is welcomed, but there is uncertainty on how quickly carbon neutrality is needed to limit global warming to 1.5°C. There is a strong argument we just need to make rapid progress as quickly as possible. Along with many other local authorities, both Somerset West and Taunton Council and Somerset County Council have recently declared climate emergencies and set targets to contribute to achieving carbon neutrality by 2030. The true test of all these declarations and targets will be the action that follows. A Citizens’ Assembly, sponsored by House of Commons select committees, is to be held in the Autumn, which may prove interesting and assist with policy choices.

Refill to avoid plastic waste

Wivey Action hosted an inspiring public meeting on 27 November 2018 to share ideas on reducing single-use plastics, which was attended by about 40 people.

Local businesses, including The Larder, Garden Shop, Conrad’s Kitchen and Ray’s Veg, talked about actions they had taken. There was a presentation on government plans and how the greatest benefits arise from first trying to reduce plastic waste, followed by reuse and recycling, and lastly from energy recovery. Difficulties with biodegradable plastics and the importance of better packaging design were also discussed.

Several people avoid plastic when shopping by taking their own bags and containers, such as Tupperware. All the business attending were happy to fill these, as well as others, such as Thornes Butchers and Taste of Spice. It is not always possible, but is one of the best solutions.

It is hoped more people will ask about refilling in shops and adopt a habit of taking their own containers. Ideas to promote this, such as a Wivey Plastic Free Week, are now to be considered.

Hothouse Earth tipping points

An international team of scientists has shown that even if the carbon emission reductions called for in the Paris Agreement are met, there is a risk of our planet entering what the scientists call “Hothouse Earth” conditions.

This would see the climate stabilise in the long term at a global average of 4-5°C higher than pre-industrial temperatures, with the sea level 10-60 m higher than today.

The scientists conclude it is now urgent to greatly accelerate the transition towards an emission-free world economy. Avoiding a “Hothouse Earth” requires not only reduction of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gas emissions but also enhancement and/or creation of new biological carbon stores.

Reports with further details: