SEEFoE Meeting, 7th September 2010


  1. Housekeeping
    • Apologies for absence
    • Minutes of last meeting
    • Next meeting
  2. Motions to Conference
  3. Campaign Updates
    • Food Chain
    • Get Serious
    • Urgent appeal for funding
    • Marinet
    • Youth & Education
    • Wonder of Wind
  4. Forthcoming Events
  5. AOB


  1. Housekeeping:
    • Apologies for absence:
      Denis Walker (DW), Jon Fuller (JF), Peter Walker (PW), Michael Downer (MD), Maike Windhorst (MW), Gabrielle Yeadell (GW)
    • Minutes of last meeting:
    • Next meeting:
      5th October 2010, 19:30
  2. Motions to Conference:
    DW provided a report on the forthcoming motions to the FoE group conference.
  3. Campaign Updates:
    • Food Chain:
      FoE has asked the group to ask the Southend East MP (Duddridge) to participate in a public debate on a sustainable food supply. The national FoE team will run the meeting. DW has written to Duddridge and awaits his response.
    • Get Serious:
      Given the lack of response to the postcard campaign the group discussed next steps. It was agreed that DW would pose a question on this at the next full council meeting.
    • Urgent appeal for funding:
      The meeting watched an appeal for funds from Andy Atkins and agreed in principle to hold a fund raising event at MW’s Victorian orchard in Downham, nr Wickford.
    • Marinet:
      DW is standing for the position of Chairman and is hopeful of success. The election is being held this Saturday in Reading.
      DW also reported that work on the proposed Marine Conservation Zones is not going well (see attachment handed out at meeting). The government is being obstructive – with the relevant scientific evidence being excluded/ignored. The data from fishermen was not going to be permitted during consideration of the proposal.
    • Youth & Education:
      Due to funding and other constraints FoE HQ has separated the youth team from core HQ work. The Youth team is now looking to secure funding from Bosch for campaign materials. DW presented a leaflet he had produced for the Youth team and showed images of the excellent notice board he had prepared for conference.
    • Wonder of Wind:
      DW reported on the irresponsible council decision to reject the application to build the Middlewick wind farm by Ridgewind. He has agreed to assist the company with “doorstepping” or leafleting the local area to assess the scale of support for the scheme. If there is a sufficient degree of support the company may press ahead with the scheme. MW offered his assistance.
  4. Forthcoming Events:
    • 10-12/09 – FoE Local Groups Conference

      Reading University
    • 20/09 20:15 – SEEOG: Social & Therapeutic Horticulture

      St. David’s Church Hall, 400 Rayleigh Road (off The Rodings), Eastwood SS9 5PT
    • 30/09 19:00 – Southend in Transition Green Drinks

      The Cricketers, Westcliff
    • 30/09 20:00 – SAEN AGM (Members only)

      Eastwood Community Centre
    • 09/10 – Food Chain day of action
    • 5-6/11 – Big Climate Connection

  5. AOB:
    • Food chain
      DW will talk to other environmental groups with a view to seeking greater involvement in the food chain event. He will approach the Womens Environmental Network.
    • ConDem policy to slash funding for speed cameras
      JF reported on government plans to slash funding on the UK’s speed camera network, expressing concern for vulnerable road users – pedestrians and cyclists. He provided statistics on the scale of reduction in death and injury over the last 10-15 years and noted the downward trend in death would now be reversed.
      It was agreed that national campaigning organisations should coordinate work in opposition to government plans. JF would draft a letter for DW to hand to the FoE National Transport Campaigner at the forthcoming group conference. The letter will ask FoE HQ to offer its support for coordinated action.
    • River Crouch pollution
      MH reported on a number of serious discharges of pollution into the River Crouch and suggested that the group should research this in detail and campaign on this in the future.
      Concern was expressed that group members did not have the expertise to research this adequately but MH felt there was valuable work the group could do. MH will send a number of press articles she has collected to DW.
    • Group leaflet
      The planned group leaflet will be finalised when the date for the forthcoming public debate is known.
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