News

A Day for……

It seems that they have a day for all sorts of things.  Some of these are more comical like the ‘talk like a pirate day’ others are good because they raise awareness of certain issues or rare conditions like tintintus awareness week or world cancer day.  We thought you might like to know about a few awareness day to do with environmental issues. Click on the list below to find out more.

World Wetlands Day

On 2 February 2015 it will be World Wetlands Day, your chance to find out more about the Wetlands of the UK and the world!

There will be events held around the globe to celebrate the purpose of the day, from seminars to nature walks and community clean up days in over 98 countries worldwide.

The date of February 2nd was chosen as it marks the adoption of the Convention on Wetlands which took place in the Iranian city of Ramsar near the Caspian Sea on 2 February 1971.

The theme chosen for World Wetlands Day 2015 is “Wetlands for our Future”.  There will be an emphasis on the agriculture and wetland sectors working together along with the water sector to secure the best possible outcome.

This year across the UK the Wildlife Trusts will be holding events to raise the public’s awareness of wetland values and benefits and the Ramsar Convention.  The UK’s wetlands are home to some of our most exciting wildlife, like otters and beavers, and this is your chance to learn more.

Bramley Apple Week

2-8 February 2015

Professional chefs and all you home bakers recognise the Bramley apple as the best possible apple to put in the traditional British food we know and love!  And did you know that the Bramley apple is only grown in Britain – it is truly a great British treasure!

It’s hard to believe that the first Bramley apple tree was grown from pips planted in 1809 by Mary Ann Brailsford, in the garden at her home in Nottinghamshire, England.

Over the years the house changed hands and in 1856 while a butcher called Matthew Bramley was living in the house a gentleman called Henry Merryweather asked Mr Bramley if he could take some cuttings from the apple tree and start to sell the apples.   Mr Bramley agreed to this, on the proviso that the apples were called after him.   And that was the start of the Bramley apple!

But it wasn’t all as easy as apple pie – in 1900 the original Bramley apple tree became victim to a ferocious storm and blew down – but incredibly the tree managed to survive that fatal day.

Bramley apple trees were planted extensively and the fruit was a particularly useful food source during the First World War.

In 1989 the Bramley Campaign was introduced and Bramley growers work together to maximise their market opportunities.

In 2003 the Bramley apple tree was one of fifty British trees chosen by the Tree Council to mark Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee – what a great achievement for a tree from such humble beginnings!  And believe it or not, but the original Bramley apple tree continues to bear fruit today, over 200 years after the handful of pips was first planted.

But now it’s your turn to get cooking and celebrate the versatility of this great British apple during Bramley Apple Week – there are so many possibilities from the classic apple pie recipe to stir fries!

Go Green Week

People and Planet are hosting Go Green Week to draw peoples’ attention to climate change and opting for greener alternatives!   Now all they need are plenty of students to help them do it!

Rising temperatures and changes in the environment has led to all sorts of natural disasters like floods, tsunamis and tornadoes.   The results have drastically changed peoples lives, and often meant having to uproot and start all over again completely.

And it’s not just people hit by these disasters in far-away countries that are at risk – the worse the problem gets, the more likely we all are to end up affected.

The organisers of the event have suggested a whole host of activities that you can get involved in during the week.  And this year Go Green Week coincides with the first Global Divestment Day of Action, which will take place on 13 February 2015.

So what’s so special about having the week in February?   Well, Valentines Day of course!   Why not set the mood by participating in Carbon Speed Dating.  It’s like normal speed dating except you’ll be matched up with people according to your carbon footprint!

National Nestbox Week

National Nest Box Week takes places from 14-21 February 2015 and it’s a chance for you to encourage birds in your garden to come home to roost!

Organised by the British Trust for Ornithology, or BTO, the week is an important one for all the brilliant birds we have in the UK, from Robins to Owls!

The idea behind the week is to get us all to put up nest boxes in our local areas, not only to protect the wildlife we already have, but to encourage even more birds to brood in our backyards!

National Nest Box Week started in 1997. As more trees are cut down, birds lose their homes, so putting up boxes is a great way of helping our winged friends – and it’s thought there’s now between 5 to 6 million boxes across the UK!

If you’ve never put up a bird box before then dont worry as at the official National Nest Box Week website, there are lots of hints and tips to get you started, as well as information on how to monitor the box and see what kind of wildlife you’re likely to attract!  And, by visiting the website you can find out more about the events taking place up and down the country during the week.

Fairtrade Fortnight

Fairtrade Fortnight which takes place from 23 February to 8 March 2015 and it’s our chance to get involved and shout about all things Fairtrade!

Fairtrade is all about improving trade for farmers in developing countries by ensuring they get better prices and good working conditions.   Fairtrade helps improve their lives and prevent discrimination against poorer producers.

Fairtrade Fortnight is also about getting the Fairtrade message heard, boosting awareness of trade issues.

In 2014 the theme was ‘making bananas fair’.  So, you could do your bit and take a simple step when buying your groceries to swap your usual brand for a Fairtrade brand.   Keep checking out the official website for news of the 2015 theme.

You might want to organise some events in your local community?  So, if you want to make a bigger impact, why not have a Fairtrade Fortnight event in your place of work and try to get as many people as possible to swap to Fairtrade products – then, in the words of Neil Armstrong when he first stepped on the moon, instead of making “one small step for man” you could make “one giant leap for mankind”

So … what will you do?  There are lots of ways to take part!  If you visit the official website you can register your event, purchase items to help promote your event, or just get lots of great ideas to ensure that you raise awareness of Fairtrade Fortnight and get this important message heard.

By telling people all about your favourite Fairtrade products you can quickly spread the word.   There are a huge variety of products available and they can be used in so many different areas of our lives, for example – cotton, chocolate, fruit and vegetables and the list goes on and on …  We do sell some fairtrade items that can be ordered for delivery with your veg box.

A big thanks to Christine at national-awareness-days.com for supplying most of the text and all the links.