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Notes from the BXMC Eco group meeting held 29 Sept 2017 at Yvonne and Stewart’s - 255 Dobcroft Road S11 9LG.

Rider - these notes are informal, please suggest amendments etc or remind me of anything I have forgotten. Thanks - Yvonne.

Many thanks to those who attended and apologies to anyone who expected an invitation and didn’t get one - the meeting was very last minute and organised on a ‘best I can do in the circumstances’  basis and also some seemingly out of date info about who might be on holiday (Y).

Attending - Andrew W; Chris B; Pat D; Rosemary F; Stewart McI; Yvonne McI.

Apologies from Sean and Gen A. and Janet S.



Our energy contracts are about to expire. Sean is preparing a paper for next weeks Church council about switching to a greener energy supplier. A move to greener energy would move us closer to contemporary thinking; active care for God’s creation  - which despite the environmental language is what Eco Church is about - and an Eco Church Silver Award. The group was in favour.

Solar panels were discussed but we need more info about the roof structure and whether the building’s listed status would stand in the way. Similar concerns were expressed about a possible flat roof garden (a la M&S Eccy Road) at the front of the building - we just need those things checked out.

We all thought we could do with knowing what else we need to do to achieve a Silver Award - this along with planning the garden would be a pleasant winter activity.

Delphis Eco products - no contract in place yet - Delphis Eco reckon that as a single Church it is better for us to use their eBay store which now does bulk quantities - more work needed here - ACTION POINT - still Yvonne. Delphis Eco have supplied us with over £50.00 worth of cleaning materials for free, also, the Ecover washing up liquid and the recycled toilet rolls are donated.

 Update on Recycling - this is chugging along nicely  - thank you all.

So far an estimated 100+ pairs of specs have been recycled through Church. These are handed in to a local optician and go on to be refurbished and sent for use abroad.

Countless batteries have gone for recycling which is great because it keeps the heavy metals out of landfill and we hope it saves you having to lug them to the supermarket.

Shoes that are fit to be worn are refurbished and sent on for reuse and those with damage are recycled - we have sent dozens of pairs down this route.

Toner cartridges are still very welcome because they are turned into cash for charity.

Mobile phones there has been a fantastic response to this - phones without chargers (30+ of those so far) go to the Sheffield Society for the Blind where they are turned into much needed cash. The plan for mobiles with chargers was to send them to Amnesty International for reuse but they are not doing that any more so unless Christian Aid can reuse them we’ll get them to the Sheffield Society for the Blind who we know can. ACTION POINT - Yvonne. That said, Rosemary has a charity contact who may be able to find them a better home. ACTION POINT - Rosemary.

Other recycling -   we considered light bulbs but decided against due to the potential for the release of harmful elements should any get broken. It may be worth collecting used postage stamps since these are useful to charities (St Lukes?) unless of course someone in Church is already doing this.(?)  Also, everyone can collect postage stamps so it is an opportunity for everyone to help the Church.


Update on the Allotment

 Some donated tools, are with Yvonne and Stewart at the moment as are a great many gardening books and plant pots. ACTION POINTS - Rosemary to ask a contact about the books - Yvonne to ask Heeley City Farm if they could use any tools (unless they were intended for someone / somewhere else ????). The tools etc we need for the Church garden can be stored in the old, almost empty, Little Fish outdoor ‘cupboard’ which needs a fastening of some sort  - Y&S to have a look

The watering rota should read the ‘watering and head gardeners’ rota with all that implies.

The compost bin is to stay and the wormery is in use

The old pallet and blue wood are no longer needed - Yvonne and Stewart to dispose of these. ACTION POINT Y&S. - update pallet gone, blue wood destined for the ‘porch skip’ unless we can get rid of it before then (ie 29 Oct).

General gardening duties were ‘embraced’ as follows - Andrew to plant up the leftover foxgloves, by the front wall and prune the cotoneaster by the front door.  Y&S to tie up the raspberries beside the path (update - temporarily done ) and try trimming the allotment hedges with battery operated trimmers but to borrow electric ones if needed. Further update - the empty raised bed has been cleaned up and netted against cats.

Access to the allotment - Y&S to clear the ‘pedestrian gate’ area of overgrown vegetation and spray the moss. ( last summer I saw a bride having her wedding photos taken in that area and outside the front doors and thought how nice it would be if we could provide a lovely living background - something to get to in the future ? - Y) 

Janet / Property Group to be approached re collecting rainwater and the in/security of the back door. The latter is important if we are to invite members of the public to visit the allotment. The former is important because the hosepipe arrangement is  ‘un/eco’ and costs us money to run. There is a plastic downpipe that we could tap into without falling foul of the buildings listing.

i, Yvonne would like to hold regular ‘open garden’ sessions for the community and will give thought to how and when I / we can reliably do this.

The Eco Notice Board - This to be used by all for general eco related messages / updates / advice e.g. staying warm in winter - reports on wildlife etc. It was also suggested that we could use the board to tell people where and how they they can recycle their stuff - ACTION POINT - all.

Contact with other churches  an eco open day at St Andrew’s, Psalter Lane was of interest but we were unable to pin down when it was - does anybody know?

Other - I forgot to say that Janet would like to plant a few roses at the front of the Church so could we all please bear this in mind as we do other planting.(Y)

Date of next meeting     TBA  and all will be welcome. Please note - there is no meeting at ours on 6 Oct - at one point I was aiming for that date - Y.

Thanks - Yvonne  (07729263453)

Wed 4 Oct 2017


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