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Inspiring day of action to help tackle climate change

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MELKSHAM’S first ClimateFest event – aimed at encouraging and inspiring positive action on climate change – has been given a big thumbs up. 

This festival brought together local groups to help tackle the climate and ecological emergencies and encouraged residents of the town to be more environmentally responsible. 

“It has been wonderful to be involved with Melksham’s first ever ClimateFest and what a fantastic day it was!” said cllr Saffi Rabey, chair of the town’s council’s environment and climate working group which organised the event. “This was a great opportunity to show our residents how even small changes to your lifestyle can make a difference. I’m so looking forward to ClimateFest 2023 being even bigger!”

Fellow member of the climate group, Miriam Zaccarelli said, “There were lots of stalls, displays, speakers and activities and it was great to see the huge amount of environmental work taking place in the Melksham area.

Raising awareness of climate challenges

“There were really informative and fascinating presentations on a range of subjects such as rewilding, recycling and rethinking energy sources, and there was a screening of the powerful film Eating Our Way to Extinction. 

“The all-day event was aimed at raising awareness of the climate challenges faced and the opportunities available for local people and the local community to make a positive difference. 

“We’ve all got a responsibility to tackle the challenges of the climate crisis and the event offered a wide range of ways in which we can all help. We are pulling together a lot of the information from the event which can be used to help transform Melksham into a better place for the climate and the environment. 

Giant CO2 cube

“Towering high over the whole event, we will never forget the 27-foot-tall scaffold cube, inspired by Mike Saunders and created by Vinnie and his team from Melksham Scaffolding. The amount of discussion and awareness that it created means that whatever your opinion, you will always remember the size of a tonne of CO2 and that each of us use 12 tonnes of CO2 every year! 

“This was the first ClimateFest, but we hope this will now become an annual event.”

Groups attended included Melksham Goes Wild; Melksham Transport Users Group; Wiltshire Wildlife Trust; Electric cars from Mini & BMW; Melksham Shed Club; Melksham Community Larder; Melksham Beekeepers Association; • Electric bikes from Spindles Bikes in Whitley and Corsham; Melksham Bloomers; Melksham Gardeners’ Society; Climate Friendly Bradford on Avon; Debbie’s eco-friendly bags; Upcycled bags and clothes from New Baginnings; Sea Shepherd Conservation Society and Indian Street Food from Tandoori G. 

There was an air source heat pump demo, an environmental quiz, a test to see if you could tell the difference between tap and bottled water (most people couldn’t!) and a chance to make a variety of items from recycled copies of Melksham Independent News! 

The Conigre Mead volunteers took people on guided tours to the Nature Reserve, and Beth Dark and the Carnival team hosted an educational exploratory treasure trail throughout the town. 

Live music was provided by the Melksham Ukulele Social Club, Bruce’s Recycled Roadshow of Vinyl Classics and the Bell’s Angels Morris Dancers, while the Melksham in Bloom Awards were presented by mayor, cllr Simon Crundell.  

“A huge thank you to everyone involved, town council staff, our outside contributors, councillors, stall holders and speakers for all your understanding with the date change and making it a great day,” added cllr Rabey.

Miriam added, “It was great to see the support of local businesses – the event couldn’t have happened without the generous sponsorship of Good Energy, Blue Leaf Property, Gompels, Wessex Water Foundation, Shurnhold Recycling and BGL Rieber.”

One Response to Inspiring day of action to help tackle climate change

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