A letter from Chris Packham

Restore Nature Now

[London 22nd June]

Dear friends, I’m writing to your group as one of the UK’s many smaller, grassroots organisations. It’s a beautiful day in Arne, Dorset where I’m currently filming Springwatch- the field of grass shoots and seedlings seems appropriate.

I applaud you- grassroots are the beating hearts of campaigning and activism. We may be small but we are mighty!

We are the mycelium under the floor of campaigning; tirelessly working away, growing, networking and barely seen- but without us the whole ecosystem of activism would simply not flourish. I thank you for the vital role that you play. A selfless, passionate and inspiring role.

We are light and agile, without the heavy governance and processes of boards and multiple layers of management. We can be responsive, reactive and blaze trails where other bulkier organisations can only slowly follow. What we lack in membership and funds we make up for in energy and effectiveness.

So here’s to the grassroots; the volunteers, the local activists, the common people, the ordinary folk MAKING CHANGE HAPPEN.

I thank you from the bottom of my heart and I hope to see as many of you as possible on Sat 22 June in London to demand our government Restore Nature Now. You can sign-up as a supporting organisation here and as individuals pledge to march here.

We know that amazing things can happen when we come together- when we unite en-masse to joyously, fervently, demand the changes we need to see from our elected leaders when it comes to biodiversity loss and climate breakdown.

See you on the streets! Chris

No-one is too small to make a difference!

One of our many volunteers read this book recently and was moved to write a review:

Everybody should read this book – it is full of solid scientific facts, and brutally honest, but somehow inspiring at the same time.

When Greta Thunberg first appeared on the scene, I didn’t read much about her. It took me a while to realise why. It was because she made me feel both envious and guilty! I knew that I would never have had the courage to speak out and call world leaders to account when I was just a teenager. I felt guilty because I felt I should be doing more than I was about the climate crisis.

She started by taking Fridays off school and sitting down outside the Swedish parliament. She handed out fliers with lots of information about the climate crisis, and posted her actions on social media. Once this went viral, hundreds of thousands of other school children have followed her example.

Greta Thunberg is absolutely remarkable and this small book was a revelation to me. Her first book, it is a collection of speeches she made to a range of audiences including the UN, the UK parliament, the US congress, the World Economic Forum and climate rallies. Not all of the people she was addressing were as concerned about the climate crisis as she was. Some were sceptical and others overtly hostile.

What I found amazing about this book was the stark clarity of her writing. She explains that having Asperger’s Syndrome causes her to think in black and white. She sees this as an advantage because as she says “there are no grey areas when it comes to survival”. What she finds inexplicable is the gap between the urgency of the situation, supported by science, and the lack of action on the part of politicians and businesses to tackle the problem.

Hub VOLUNTEER’s Book Review

Get this book from all good bookshops including one of our personal favorites: The Little Bookshop Cookham. [Greta Thunberg ISBN 978-0-141-99271-6]

THIS WEEK: Repair Cafe Saturday 8th June

Tools on a wooden desk

Back again this year: Maidenhead’s successful Repair Café gives people’s broken or worn-out possessions a new lease of life! See people like yourself rebuilding, repairing and recycling things that might otherwise be thrown away. Open again in our ECO-Action Hub.

Please register here if you wish to bring something for repair to reserve your time-slot: Or feel free to email the Repair Café team on repair.maidenhead@gmail.com.

We open from 10:00 to 15:00. Repair skills available at this next event include:
– small electrical items (excludes microwaves and large items)
– laptops/computers, phone repairs (except screen repairs)
– IT assistance(e.g. anti-virus, software updates)
– glass repairs, book binding, fixing picture frames
– basic woodwork, small furniture items
– sewing and mending, textiles repairs

We aim to fix anything, our volunteers love to solve problems!

Look out for our future dates in 2024!

Repair Cafe Saturday 8th June

Tools on a wooden desk

Back again this year: Maidenhead’s successful Repair Café gives people’s broken or worn-out possessions a new lease of life! See people like yourself rebuilding, repairing and recycling things that might otherwise be thrown away. Open again in our ECO-Action Hub.

Please register here if you wish to bring something for repair to reserve your time-slot: Or feel free to email the Repair Café team on repair.maidenhead@gmail.com.

We open from 10:00 to 15:00. Repair skills available at this next event include:
– small electrical items (excludes microwaves and large items)
– laptops/computers, phone repairs (except screen repairs)
– IT assistance(e.g. anti-virus, software updates)
– glass repairs, book binding, fixing picture frames
– basic woodwork, small furniture items
– sewing and mending, textiles repairs

We aim to fix anything, our volunteers love to solve problems!

Look out for our future dates in 2024!

Grow Green: Gardening Ideas for a better planet

One of our many visitors at the Hub at our Anniversary Event was inspired by what they saw.

They talked about how many of the resources in the Hub support the messages and learnings from a book they recently read. They wrote a review and strongly recommend “Grow Green” by Jen Chillingaworth.

“This little book is one I would certainly recommend to anybody who wants to learn about gardening in the best way for the planet. It is small and light enough to be carried around the garden, and provides lots of helpful information for all green gardeners, including beginners.

Hub Visitor’s Book Review

You can get this book from all good bookshops including one of our personal favorites: The Little Bookshop Cookham.

I thought we were not doing too badly in our garden, from an environmental viewpoint. We have a pond, two water butts, three compost bins, a log pile and a wild area. We don’t use any chemicals and have started to save some of our seeds. However, I found lots of useful tips in this little book which covers topics from compost and biodiversity, to checking your soil type and growing indoor plants. I never knew that ground cinnamon could be sprinkled on soil in seed trays to help reduce problems with fungal disease, or that most edible plants need 6-8 hours of direct sunshine during the day.

The author does not assume that her readers know anything about environmentally friendly gardening, but manages not to be patronising! She suggests we apply the 5 R principles – Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle and Rot to everything we do in the garden. There are loads of ideas on how to reuse containers you already have, lists of what is suitable for composting, and which plants help others to grow better.

Many of the things she mentions fit in with the resources at the ECO Action Hub! I have swapped seeds there, and will certainly be at the next seedling swap. The library of things will mean tools and equipment can be borrowed, saving money and reusing resources more efficiently. There is a great section about wildlife and how to make your garden more welcoming to all sorts of creatures. It is a fantastic place to visit anyway, but has already made us better at gardening sustainably.

Hub Visitor’s Book Review

🌿🎉 THIS SATURDAY: ECO Action Hub’s 1st Anniversary Party! 🎉🌿

What’s Happening? We’re celebrating our first year – AND we’re celebrating YOU, our incredible community of eco-warriors. Here’s why you won’t want to miss this:

When: Saturday May 11th from 10:00 with the ‘grand opening’ at 11:00, cake and bubbles at 12:00 and events through the day in ECO Action Hub.

Inspiring Conversations: Connect with people on the same journey or just starting out: climate advocates, curious minds. Share stories, swap tips, learn how small actions can make a big difference for you & for the planet!

Meet Our Team and our Partners:  Our passionate team members will be there to chat with you about sustainable living, climate action, and biodiversity. Our partners (from the local “Wilds”, from the “Wildlife Garden Awards” and others will all be there too!

Meet Special Guests: We’re thrilled to welcome RBWM’s Karen Davies, Cabinet Member for Climate Change and Biodiversity, along with her colleagues. They’ll be signing up for the 10% Challenge right alongside you!

Engaging Eco-Activities:

  • Seedling Swap: Bring your extra seedlings and exchange them with fellow gardeners.
  • Repair Cafe: Got a broken item? Our skilled repair volunteers will help fix it!
  • Library of Things: open for you to be able to pick items to take out ‘on loan’!
  • Banana Climate Game: A fun way to learn about carbon footprints and climate impact.
  • Jenga Challenge: Challenge yourself to answer eco-questions playing a giant Jenga game.
  • Personal Action Plan Sign-Up: Get personalised tips to reduce your environmental impact.
  • 10% Challenge: Commit to reducing your carbon emissions by 10%—we’ll guide you!
  • Young ECO-Warriors Story-Telling: for children from MDG at 11:15 / 13:15
  • Live Music: Relax and listen to gently soothing eco-friendly live music too!

Cake and Bubbles: And if that’s not enough there will be cake and champagne to go with the games and the swaps and the conversation … it’s a reward for your commitment to a greener planet!

🌎🌱 Together we can create a greener, healthier future. See you there! 🌎🌱

THIS WEEK: Repair Cafe Saturday 11th May

tools in garage?

Back again this year: Maidenhead’s successful Repair Café gives people’s broken or worn-out possessions a new lease of life! See people like yourself rebuilding, repairing and recycling things that might otherwise be thrown away. Open again in our ECO-Action Hub.

Please register here if you wish to bring something for repair to reserve your time-slot: Or feel free to email the Repair Café team on repair.maidenhead@gmail.com.

We open from 10:00 to 15:00. Repair skills available at this next event include:
– small electrical items (excludes microwaves and large items)
– laptops/computers, phone repairs (except screen repairs)
– IT assistance(e.g. anti-virus, software updates)
– glass repairs, book binding, fixing picture frames
– basic woodwork, small furniture items
– sewing and mending, textiles repairs

We aim to fix anything, our volunteers love to solve problems!

Look out for our future dates in 2024!

ECO Parenting: “potty-training” babies!

🚽💫Are you an expectant parent or already experiencing the joyous chaos of raising a baby aged 0-6 months? Find out how transform your potty-training experience!🚽💫

Join us at 11am on Friday, 17th May at the Hub and discover a revolution in potty training.

  • What is ec babies? A groundbreaking app to guide parents to success with potty training.
  • Who’s it for? Parents to be or with babies aged 0-6 months, keen to save money & the environment.
  • Reserve your FREE seat: Eventbrite tickets here

How does it help? In the face of an environmental & cost of living crisis, there’s never been a better time for new parents to try elimination communication (EC). This gentle approach to potty training early is good for the environment & saves you money. It also promotes healthy bowel and bladder development, and encourages communication skills.

ec babies graphic & app
  • Why do it? With EC, good bladder and bowel control and the ability to communicate toileting needs develop at a very early age, so many babies no longer require nappies by between 12 and 18 months of age.
  • What’s the benefit?: fewer nappies used in year 1, potty-trained altogether a year or two earlier than might be. For disposable nappies: less cost & less waste. For reusables: less laundry and energy consumption. AND health benefits too!
  • Is EC a new thing? The EC approach is common in cultures around the world from Vietnam to Alaska; just a couple of generations ago it was common in the UK too. Unfortunately, the methods have been largely forgotten here.

Tell me more! ec babies guides, motivates, and supports parents and carers willing to give EC a go. We’ve worked hard to make it the best we can. After much prototyping and testing we have something ready to go. If you would like to help evaluate (and maybe even test) our latest offering we’d love to hear from you.

Find out more at www.ecbabies.org

Repair Cafe Saturday 11th May

tools in garage?

Back again this year: Maidenhead’s successful Repair Café gives people’s broken or worn-out possessions a new lease of life! See people like yourself rebuilding, repairing and recycling things that might otherwise be thrown away. Open again in our ECO-Action Hub.

Please register here if you wish to bring something for repair to reserve your time-slot: Or feel free to email the Repair Café team on repair.maidenhead@gmail.com.

We open from 10:00 to 15:00. Repair skills available at this next event include:
– small electrical items (excludes microwaves and large items)
– laptops/computers, phone repairs (except screen repairs)
– IT assistance(e.g. anti-virus, software updates)
– glass repairs, book binding, fixing picture frames
– basic woodwork, small furniture items
– sewing and mending, textiles repairs

We aim to fix anything, our volunteers love to solve problems!

Look out for our future dates in 2024!