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Financial boost for creation of climate hub in Stratford

A CLIMATE hub where people can get sustainable living advice, hold events and raise awareness is being set up in Stratford.

Stratford Climate Action, Stratford Friends of the Earth and Extinction Rebellion are behind the project, which has been given £9,600 in funding by Warwickshire County Council. A community interest company has been set up to run the operation and organisers have started searching for a vacant retail unit.

The hub, to be called Net Zero, will aim to get as many people involved as possible. Stephen Norrie, of Stratford Climate Action, said: “Once we have a building we’ll spend the first few months setting it up, holding consultations with the public and other groups who can propose ideas or would like to advertise their services.

“The hub would serve to give information to the public, partly about things they can do to save energy and become more sustainable in their own lives, and partly about where we are going as a society, the climate emergency and the solutions to it on a micro scale and a bigger scale.

“We would also look to put on community events as well as provide information and it can be expanded from there. If there’s the energy and we can get more funding, then we can put in things like a repair café and plant swaps, or we could provide careers advice or highlight innovation strategies and innovative businesses.”

The hub is looking for an empty unit to occupy on a “meanwhile lease” – the owner would not have to pay business rates in return for providing the space for free. Ideally the project, which would be run by volunteers, will be open in four to five months, helping Stratford Climate Action push its “pledge campaign”, asking people to make changes to help the environment.

A town centre location is seen as key to the concept as it would get plenty of footfall from locals and tourists, helping spread the message to other parts of the country.

Green money

Warwickshire County Council’s Green Shoots Community Climate Change Fund has provided money to lots of projects across the county.

These are some from the Stratford district that had funding announced last week:

Action Station, the Stratford Biodiversity Education Project, electrical vehicle charging at Kineton Sports and Social Club, replacement heating for Wixford Village Hall and renewable energy projects at Earlswood Village Hall, Greig Hall in Alcester and Ettington Community Centre.

There was also funding for Stratford Town Football Club’s 3G LED project and a bike rack at St Edmund's Parish Church, Shipston.

Ecology projects in Welford, Kineton, Barford, Luddington and Tanworth-in-Arden were also successful with their funding applications, as was Bridgetown Primary School, Stratford, which is planning a climate action day for children.

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