Transition Culture

An Evolving Exploration into the Head, Heart and Hands of Energy Descent

Transition Culture has moved

After eight years of frenzied blogging at this site, Transition Culture has moved to its new home. Do come and join us, but feel free to also browse this now-archived site and use the shop. Thanks for all your support, comments and input so far, and see you soon.

5 Nov 2012

Your help needed! New book about Transition needs your Top Tips for practical projects …

Transition Town Bridport’s ‘Draughtbusters’ project at work.

This new book is progressing well, thanks again for all your input.  One section in it is about practical projects, and as part of that I would love to ask you if, as a result of your involvement in practical projects (many of which you have already told me about), you would have any tips to share to help other initiatives have successful projects?  What advice would you give to other groups, based on your experience, that might help to ensure that they are successful in achieving the projects they’d like to do?  Any Top Tips for our Transition Practical Projects Top Tips section would be very much appreciated.  Thanks!

Comments are now closed on this site, please visit Rob Hopkins' blog at Transition Network to read new posts and take part in discussions.


Marie Goodwin
5 Nov 5:20pm

Hi — my top project is timebanking as a way to support your transition project. Creating an alternative currency that supports all of the volunteerism surrounding transition is a great way. Our timebank has funded watershed and town clean ups, crop-mobbing, food gleaning and composting projects, CSA volunteerism, our town’s business alliance and their project, fair trade and arts community projects, and a multitude of other transition community-wide activities. It is also just a good way to get people to know each other. A timebank is easy to start and people get really excited about the idea. Transition Towns and Timebanks are logical allies. I had a conference in May about the connection between the two, and had Charles Eisenstein and Edgar Cahn come and give workshops exploring this natural connection. — Marie Goodwin, Transition Town Media (PA); Timebank Media (PA)

Robin Curtis
5 Nov 5:26pm

We have just installed a DIY RAM pump with the intention of pumping water to our allotments in Constantine, Cornwall. Any interest? (RAM pump – no power required – used to be common. DIY version available from internet – implemented using standard plastic plumbing stuff).

Have also initiated a web based lending library of “Transition” related books/papers etc that are owned/held by individual members – for lending to others in the community. Should lead to one-to-one lending / conversation / awareness building etc.


Robin Curtis

Emiliano Muñoz
5 Nov 8:52pm

Hi Rob,
Emiliano here, from Spain, we met in Cork while I was your permaculture student around 2001-02
Now, back in Spain, we run “Portillo in Transition” in Portillo: a 2000 inhabitants village in Central Spain.
Our most successful initiative dragging people’s attention is a series of dinning events under the light of lamps powered by a bike-generator. Over the summer we modified a bike to drive a recycled electric generator with two separate outputs (plugs). We connect standard bulbs and energy-saving ones to each plug and when changing from one to the other your legs REALLY feel the difference.
So far we have celebrated two dinning events: the first under the stars last August and the second few weeks ago on a XIV century castle in this occasion with live music running off the bike too. Everyone brings its own food and drink to share, sing and even dance.
Should you need photos, extra information, etc, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
All the best!
Emiliano Muñoz
Portillo en Transición

Truus Boerma
6 Nov 7:38pm

TTHaarlem, like many others, started Repair Café one year ago. About 140 things have been repaired so far. People are happy and feel at home together. It is good for recycling and for fun.

Maddy Longhurst
7 Nov 11:41pm

Hi all,
I’d like to share a campaign and project that’s emerging in north Bristol because of a serious threat to some rare Grade 1 agricultural land there.
This piece of land, known as The Blue Finger (because of it’s colour on agricultural land classification maps) is one of Bristol’s greatest assets few people have heard of.

It is the land upon which Bristol’s Market Garden and Dairy Sub-Region stood post war. It is the best quality soil in the UK, and only 2.8% of the UK is Grade 1.

It is the best for growing food with high yields in all weathers.

Bristol City Council have plans to Build roads and a Park and Ride on this land without knowing quite what they are building on and the irreversible negative impacts this development would create, not only for the transport system but for Bristol’s food security.

Bristol City Council has committed itself to moving towards sustainable, local, resilient food systems yet it stands firm on this very flawed public transport plan and protest falls on deaf ears.

The community has come together to find it’s voice and to work proactively to express not only what it doesn’t want to happen to this land but what it does want.

We very deliberately separated the ‘anti tarmac’ campaign from the ‘pro soil’ campaign and are in the process of setting The Blue Finger Alliance to really explore and move forward on a vision for protecting this land for food growing to serve the local population.

While this is happening, in the ‘anti’ camp I have written an article about the situation called “Healthy Soil and Local Food or Tarmac and Cars?” for the Bristol Local Food Network, which the Council has just censored, stopped it from being published.

This shows what an interesting and timely topic this is.
I’m certainly happy to give more information about how this movement for this precious soil has emerged and where we are planning to go with it.

This is going to be a great transition book!!


Marcus Perrin
9 Nov 3:22am

We’ve started to think more about opportunities to link our projects. It’s early days but we see it as a way to mutually re-inforce projects.

For example, we have helped to plant about 150 fruit trees in Chepstow and we also co-run an Apple Day with the Town Council. So for the past two years, as part of Apple Day we’ve run short guided tours of the mini-orchards local to the Apple Day event.

We’re having an open 2013 ‘forward look’ meeting next week where groups will outline their 2013 plans and I’m hoping we can identify more opportunties for this sort of thinking.

12 Nov 10:34am

My top tip is to get alongside positive things that are already present in your community. A small band of Transition people who really “get it” on the big issues can only achieve so much by themselves, but when we can show allotment groups, community interest companies, community care groups, civic groups, history groups etc, etc, that what they are already doing has a greater value than they realise there is a “multiplier effect” for our efforts. Recognise, praise and support whatever is already happening locally that (even inadvertently) contributes to community reslience and resourcefulness. In our community of 5,000 souls, we have Transition-minded people on the parish council and the steering groups or committees of almost all significant local organisations. This, as much as what we do together as a Transition group is changing and improving our small town/large village, sooner rather than later. There is of course, a very long way to go and as a community we’re still horribly vulnerable to our dependence on oil and global supply chains for almost everything…but we’re do what we can and we’re roping more people into our way of thinking.

Gijs de Boer
18 Nov 7:32pm

If you want something to happen, don’t expect others wil do it. You got to do it yourself. The best advertisment for a desired development is a positive example. And it’s better to give than to ask. That’s why for instance the Repair Cafés are such a succes.