Sustainable Schemes

The Sustainable Girton Project, formed in 2004 and “officially” launched at the Recreation Ground in Girton on Saturday May 28th 2005, is already active in a number of areas.

Shredding Garden Waste

The first of these, organised by our Master Composters, and supported by Cambridgeshire County Council, is the shredder.

Monthly sessions are organised where Girton residents who have a significant quantity of hedge trimmings and other bulky garden waste, can contact us in advance by phoning Don on 562232, and arrange for a visit from the shredding team. This substantial machine is able to convert bulky piles of garden waste into chippings, suitable for composting or using as a mulch within the garden.

The shredder, fuel, and labour by the shredding team, are all provided, but we do ask for a voluntary contribution towards the running costs of the shredder, and so far this scheme has been self-funding.

This scheme has proved extremely successful. It has significantly reduced waste going to landfill, avoided the need for garden bonfires, provided free compost and mulch for those who have used it, and been extremely popular!

In September and October 2005 the team undertook to help the church clear a backlog of green waste – there is an account of this mammoth job here, together with some photos of the team in action

Dates for the forthcoming “shredding days” are published in the Girton Parish News. The next will be on January 14th 2006, when we also plan to have a team from the National Trust at Anglesey Abbey in Girton to help with the shredding of Christmas trees.

The Float

In 2004, Douglas de-Lacey was offered a 1940’s Morrison Electricar tipper truck. It had been sitting in a garage for nearly 15 years, and was in quite good condition though in need of some repairs and much restoration. For those interested more details about it are given at the Float’s home page.

So, what does one do with a float?

The first step was to make it properly roadworthy, and we are extremely grateful for generous grants from both the Girton Town Charity and CCORRN (Cambridgeshire Community Reuse and Recycling Network). Thanks to them we have been able to put it back onto the road and into service for the community.

The float is been used to support a number of the activities of the Sustainable Girton Project:

The shredder for example is cumbersome to transport, and the float makes the ideal vehicle for moving it from garden to garden.
It is used to collect unwanted tools from Girton residents, and taking these to Tools For Self Reliance – a charity that recycles tools for use in third world countries – in Waterbeach.
We also make occasional collections of items that would otherwise go to waste for organisations such asEmmaus. When things such as white goods are replaced, it is often forgotten that the old ones could be valuable to someone else, and still have many years useful service. We make it easy for residents to allow otherwise useless things to be recycled or reused, with the added bonus of reducing the waste going to landfill.
Finally, the float is used to advertise and promote the Sustainable Girton Project. As it is very distinctive, and easily identifiable when bedecked with its “Sustainable Girton” livery, it does an excellent job of raising our profile within Girton. As well as the official launch of the Sustainable Girton Project, it has made appearances at the Village Feast Day, and Girton Show.

Others in Girton

We are not the only people helping Girton become more sustainable. The Allotments Society, for example, are reducing the number of “food miles” while producing an abundance of healthy and delicious fresh foods.

Others are contributing in less public ways, simply by, among other things, adjusting their life style in small ways to have a surprisingly large effect.