Just to show that we are not alone, this is a short account of our neighbour and fellow transition town, Abbots Langley Transition Town Association (ALTTA), known as Abbots in Transition.
Abbots in Transition (ALTTA) is a small voluntary group made up of local residents who feel passionately about making a positive difference to Abbots Langley.
Inspired by the Transition Towns movement which began in Totnes, Devon in 2005, and arose out of concern for the twin challenges of climate change and fossil fuel depletion, they are asking themselves the question, “What would a low carbon Abbots Langley look like, one that depends less on fossil fuels, one in which everyone is empowered to share their skills and one in which we use the collective genius of our community to find more sustainable and resilient schemes mainly in the areas of food, transport, energy use/generation and waste reduction?”.
They aim to be a catalyst for positive change by raising awareness of serious global issues and encouraging and supporting ideas that emerge from their community which address these challenges on a local level.
They have started a Community Market at the Henderson Hall several times per year which gives local people an opportunity to sell their home grown or made produce and goods and for them to celebrate and enjoy the creative potential of their village. They are hoping to make this a more regular event as time goes on and are supporting the Henderson Hub project which would make a regular market more feasible.
They have also supported a group of residents who felt strongly about the harmful habit of single use plastic bags, their effect on the environment and wildlife, and helped them form a group which worked with local shops, schools and residents. The campaign has resulted in a marked drop in their use, as more people reuse their bags.
A key feature of Abbots in Transition is forming strong partnerships and supporting positive schemes and groups. Abbots Langley Parish Council offered to set aside some land adjacent to new allotments in Primrose Hill for a Community Orchard, if ALTTA could find a group to plant and maintain it as the Council did not have the resources to do this.
Through reaching out to the community, they formed a group of volunteers and leader and 32 fruit trees (a mixture of local and heritage varieties) were planted by a mixed generational group of community volunteers. This will be a local food resource for future generations and is also a start to restoring some native fruit trees, largely lost by the narrowing of varieties practiced by large supermarkets.