Transition Chepstow

Biggest ever Chepstow Big Lunch in the Castle

Hundreds flocked to Chepstow castle on Father’s Day Sunday for Chepstow’s biggest ever “Big Lunch“. One of thousands of such events taking place nationally, it was the first time Chepstow as a whole came together for a Big Lunch. Gifted with glorious weather, the occasion proved a real joy for locals to get together and offered many exciting activities and entertainment. Highlights included live music ranging from Chepstow Male Voice Choir to Offa’s Tykes Ukulele Band, as well as hands-on activities including crafts for children and fun tennis games organised by Chepstow Tennis Club.

Locals were invited to prepare their own picnics to bring along and enjoy together on the grass inside Chepstow Castle. Impressively, half an hour into the big lunch, the lower bailey was bustling with adults, children, dogs, picnic blankets, chairs and of course lots of food! Prizes awarded on the day by Transition Chepstow included Best Historical, Best Green and Best Healthy Picnic, kindly sponsored by Herbert Lewis Department Store, Stone Rock Pizza and Marks&Spencer.

Many interesting local groups participated in the event, including Severn Area Rescue Association (SARA) who brought along some of their brand new rescue equipment, St John’s On-the-Hill school who provided two bouncy castles and a re-usable bottle top environmental collage, and Chepstow Fair Trade Forum who provided a “hook your own fairtrade banana” activity.

Transition Chepstow organised this event to bring out a sense of community in a celebration for the 950th birthday of Chepstow, the Castle and Priory, as well as 10 years since Chepstow became a Transition Town. The Big Lunch is also part of the UK-wide Great Get Together of over 100,000 local community events to commemorate the life and achievements of Jo Cox MP, who was murdered on June 16th last year.

Chepstow’s Big Lunch was kindly supported by the 950 celebration group, Cadw, and local groups and volunteers who stepped up to help on the day, including Chepstow Society, Chepstow Rotary Club, and Garden City Community Group.

Other groups present: St John Ambulance Caldicot Division, The Drill Hall project, Monmouth and District NCT, CHIP Chepstow, Jez Becker, Gwent Wildlife Trust, Gwent Energy CIC, Chepstow Walkers are Welcome, Youth Coffee Shop at Bulwark Community Centre, Community Connections Befriending Scheme, Chepstow Child and Family Therapy Centre, and 1st Bulwark Scouts.
Other choirs and bands that performed on the day: Chepstow Musical Youth Theatre, Chepstow Choral Society, Chepstow Community Choir and Jig of Slurs (Folk Band).

Many thanks to all that joined in!

Comments from Tomorrow Film Screening

Transition Chepstow would like to thank all participants who came to the film show at the Drill Hall in May, including local groups and Gwent Energy CIC, who sponsored the screening.

You can read some comments from viewers below.

General

We consume so much because we are BORED! Learn something new today.
Organisational massive challenge!
Changing takes time and is the hardest thing for people to do. Fear of the unknown.
Time to change – 10 years +. Do we allow time?
When nation fails, cities/town has to take over.

Food

Community food growth – schools producing own food.
Social, environmental and public costs of food.
“The bulk of the worlds food is produced by small farmers. It’s a con that industrial farming can feed the world’ Nick Green. (Film quote)
“We just start from where we are” Incredible Edible Todmorden (Film quote)
“Urban farming sounds great on a powerpoint presentation” D-Town Farm, Detroit. (Film quote)
Being able to produce your own food gives you the feeling that ‘I can survive’. Charles and Perrin Harve-Gruyer Organic Farmers. (Film quote)
Human plunder happens through accumulation. (Film quote)
I’m a farmer, I want compost This is not garbage. These are resources.
Intercropping/permaculture increases production 2-4 times, reduces CO2 and provides employment.

Democracy

You are preaching to the converted. Show this the Welsh Assembly, particularly xxxx M4 relief road proposal!
Compulsory viewing for all politicians, please.
Multi-faceted approach; Marketing/advertising: Government Policy: Ground up: Local voice.
Community ownership and empowerment. Local voice.

Education

Move to Finland.
Loved school playground – Norway. Great Education.
Get Welsh education minister to visit Finland education system. Children need to learn skills to make, grow, cherish.
“We use our time for teaching not for testing” Finland (Film quote)
Norway education relationship based on respect.

Energy/transport

Train/public transport better geared to population.
“If we make more roads we will have more traffic. What we plan to build influences peoples choices and lifestyle. What are we waiting for?” Copenhagen. (Film quote)

Join the Big Lunch crew!

We are bringing together locals for a picnic to celebrate community and have fun on Sunday, the 18th June 2017 at Chepstow Castle. Would you like to be a part of the team?

We need all sorts of help to organise the event, from contacting musicians and community groups, to running children’s activities, help with health and safety, setting up, coordinating and cleaning up on the day.

We need a few more people to help us make Chepstow Big Lunch a great day!

Join us at our next Big Lunch meetings on Thursday 2nd and 23rd March 2017 at 7.30pm, upstairs at The Lime Tree in Chepstow!

If you can’t make it and would like to have a chat, please contact us at biglunch@transitionchepstow.org.uk or call Tim at 07971 566936.