Ideas, Comments and responses from the Questionnaire
Here is a summary of the ideas and suggestions that came from the returned questionnaires distributed to each household in Martinstown during August 2020. The aim of the questionnaire was to draw on the knowledge, experience and skills of the residents in order to facilitate the working groups that will begin to look at how to make Martinstown more sustainable. In the long term, the aim is to make Martinstown carbon neutral.
This document is divided into the categories as laid out in the questionnaire, however, from the responses it would seem sensible, initially, to combine Transport and Energy, and Food and Waste/Recycling for the working groups
Transport and Energy
Local transport was a concern for many. The need for the X51 and/or alternative buses to be restored. If this cannot happen then a community owned (electric) 10 seater minibus, run by volunteer drivers and possibly sponsored by local businesses was suggested as a possible solution.
Community owned electric car(s) for villagers to use and help others to get to doctors or dentists is another suggestion, along with a car share scheme. Electric charging points could be installed at the shop/hall/pub.
Community owned (electric) bikes with sponsorship is another idea, allied to the improvement to or surfacing of the cycle path/footpath through Clandon Farm to Dorchester. A safe foot/cycle path to Bats Lane is needed to link the village to the cycle route. Safer cycle routes could also be established through Steepleton to Winterbourne Abbas.
There is concern about the quantity and speed of traffic through the village. Traffic calming measures or a reduction of the speed limit to 20mph are offered solutions. A survey of local car usage and traffic passing through village could be a first step to see if it can be reduced.Links with existing transport groups e.g. Les and Jan have done much work, would be good.
Shared camper van! / caravan.
Reduce the use of high-emission vehicles, especially for short journeys. Education.
Solar panels for water and electric could be placed on the roofs of domestic, agricultural and business buildings (and the church?) Accompanied by batteries to store energy generated. There is the potential for a field of solar panels that could power the village (This has been done at Ashton Hayes in Cheshire) Liaising with Dorset Council, who are keen to make their own business more sustainable, and the PCC (also keen to Green) is essential here.
Many public and council owned car parks are building covered car ports that have solar panels on top, generating electric to power the car park needs and council buildings. They have the advantage of keeping the cars cool in the summer and dry in the winter. Village hall car park?
Allowing solar panels on roofs in conservation areas facing the street – national/county level regulations involved.
Other suggestions for sources of communal power.
Having a wind turbine to add to the powering of the village in a sustainable way.
Coil water turbine to harness free energy from stream
Air sourced heat pumps and Ground source heat pumps. Installed to provide for Magna housing or those on lower incomes as well as for general domestic use.
Have regular presentations in the village hall for energy saving opportunities and renewable options, from external consultants. Investigate communal energy sources. Green energy 'one stop shop' advice sessions in village hall. Solutions and providers. Sources of funding and grants. Recruit sustainable energy mentors – those that have solar panels, air sourced heat pumps already to talk to those thinking about it. Community/village purchasing scheme (buying group) based on green energy
Encourage and facilitate people shopping around for best green energy deals.
Insulation of houses to maximum education, survey
Anaerobic digester for farm waste
Have a 'plant a tree' drive in the village and acquire land to plant trees.
Tree planting on any spare bits of land around village e.g. road verges. On small or large scale, for eg. extend tree planting on verge on way to Dorchester and fill gaps.
Plant trees to screen barns.
Help gardeners and landowners to plant trees & hedges.
Other notes and info about tree planting:
Examples: Frampton by village hall, Bere Regis river and hill with trees.
Climate change - Carbon absorbed in trees is great compared to grassland etc:
From another source: Trees absorb 10 t CO2/ ha/year in both soil & biomass. Grass absorbs 0.075t
Schemes and organisations: Woodland Trust e.g. MOREwoods 500 + trees as woodland on ½ ha + help design, supply trees & protection, & cover up to 75% cost. If want contractor, they arrange & cover up to 60% costs over 1 ha.
Trees for Dorset.
Countryside Stewardship tree planting 3ha min, 1 ha min if reduces flood. £1.28 per tree, or up to £6800 / ha.
Along with the creation of wild flower meadows on all available large or small patches of land the management of verges could be done more sensitively, taking account of DNT et al advice. Part of the Green could be meadow especially the west end. We could raise funds to supply everyone with appropriate wild flower seeds.
Rewilding all available space no matter how small. Education. Isaballa Tree, author and pioneer in the UK has rewilded a large area in Sussex, could come and give a talk. Her new book is about rewilding smaller areas.
In East Anglia there is a scheme being set up to encourage everyone to give over 20% of their land no matter how big or small to rewilding.
Less intensive farming methods – more of a national issue
Encourage more grow your own veg; have a group. Discount system for purchase of fertiliser and seeds etc
Build wooden bug hotels built with a glass screen for viewing
Footpaths should be kept checked and gates regularly inspected
John Elliot – see attached copy
The stream, Radon gas, CAP farm subsidies, planning changes.
Communal orchards, allotments involving children/families.
Liaise with and work alongside farmers for the benefit of all.
Hedgehog friendly village – no slug pellets, put out food/water, highways.
Promote wildlife corridors, hedgehog runs.
More understanding of the ecology of the S Winterbourne
Pool nature recording as blog or as annual report
Flood measures management techniques, natural structures
Bronwen Davison has 2 Bat boxes for village hall, hedgehog box
Raise funds for trees/seeds/buying land.
A coordinated bulk buying scheme for the village, in conjunction with the shop, with the emphasis on local food. A Directory of where local food is available could be made available on line. Agree something all need & collect e.g. every month e.g. lentils, brown rice, recycled paper loo rolls, Ecover wash powder. Suggest items we’ll all get there if stocked. E.g. order from Suma.
Support for the village shop and Post office - seen as crucial to the village. Excess garden produce could be donated to the shop, food bank, or other share scheme.
Village challenge of 'what can you grow?' and offer surplus to villagers. Could certain kinds of extra food be made into grocery items and sold for the community by volunteers? Eg veg – chutney
Provide more allotments and have allotments for communal vegetables and a community hub. Those with large gardens could offer space for others to use to grow veg. Community orchard/bee hives. Communal apple pressing and bottling
A well produced media/promotional campaign to encourage healthier eating. Village dietathon with prizes for those who lose most weight.
Shop as village co-op with Karen as well paid manager.
Use shop more including cash back.
Get the 'zero waste' van that goes to the market to come to the village so people can shop at it
We should ban the term 'food waste' from our vocabulary. No food should be wasted – buy less, compost green material. Communal composting.
The shop is looking to set up a refill area and Karen would appreciate ideas, help, suggestions to setting this up.
Eat 'wildlife managers' such as cattle at Blackdown.
Is there a LETS scheme nearby and available?
Is there a TRY exchange in the village?
Monthly clear out of bits and bobs- swaps
Recycling centre with bins regularly collected, with facilities for things DC do not recycle. Electrical goods, metals, tetra packs etc. Recycling bins on green
Approach McDonalds to ask them to put up posters urging customers not to throw rubbish out of their cars on our road. Also to put up bins
Organise litter pick-up sessions to clear the road periodically.
Hurrah and support for Waste Watch; encourage villagers to use it.
Plastic free campaign/challenge
Cardboard scheme as cardboard is now £80 – 120 tonne. A local 'man' collects the shop every day for this purpose.
Support recycling and Waste Watch. Reduce pollution. Reduce plastic e.g. food packaging e.g.buy fruit and veg from village shop or buy in bulk to avoid plastic cartons.
Reduce pollution run off (chemicals and plastic) from farms.
Investigate incentives for villagers to reduce single-use plastic usage
Set up a free-cycle forum for people's unwanted quality items.
Book and clothes swap/share
Have a repair shop.
Have a Green village competition across Dorset; Dorset Council are very keen on this idea.
Explore ways to make the Hall greener with more involvement of the wider community
Flower baskets/beds etc along the lines of many French villages; cost – enhanced PC precept?
Education: it is important to learn new skills together and especially to involve children from the start.
Important to inform and challenge existing mindsets. Help people to realise/believe they can make a difference.
Work with Parish Council and Dorset Council to deliver projects
Improvements re flooding
For tree planting, recreation (picnics, walks, ping pong, boules), village events, Community woodland. Particular projects e g scouts, educational.
Contact local landowners to acquire, rent, use, plant trees, re-wild land.
Hedge and tree planting, cultivation techniques to improve soil structure.
Grants. Crowd fund.
Donations from villagers, interested parties (e.g. financed Eype community field in 1 week).
Gov and other schemes RHI, Stewardship, Woodland Trust, RHI, Smart Export Guarantee govt payment scheme, directory of local grants, Waste Watch?
Encourage participation and consensus. Agree principles & structure early so peaceful, clear, efficient, transparent, open, inclusive, comfortable.
If own anything need formal structure e.g. Unincorporated Assoc. Charity, Community Interest Co, Co Ltd by Guarantee, Community Benefit Society, Charitable Incorporated Org; with constitution, asset lock. See Coop ‘Simply Legal’ guides. Advice Community Action Dorset.
Other village facilities: GP surgery occasional / pharmacy / sports facilities to reduce journeys to town.
Even if it’s slow at times Green Martinstown can be ready to make the most of any schemes or offers.
Survey the community, in a more targeted way to see what people's views are – perhaps presenting them with some facts and figures eg around what people are prepared to spend on food which will cost more if sustainably produced
Reading Rooms – is this a village facility? Could it be put to use?
Footpaths/walkways – soft footpaths, ie level grass walkways, particularly on S side of main st, up to Hardy's turning and to Mallards Green
Install map of walks around Mtown at village green