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Quarterly Partnership Gathering – 4th November 2014

Liz Zeidler, Chair of Bristol Green Capital Partnership

Liz Zeidler, Chair of Bristol Green Capital Partnership

To offer new and prospective Partnership members a brief history of Quarterly Partnership Gatherings, here’s the last year in brief: In January 2014, the QPM took place at @Bristol and took an open space format where Partnership members and the newly elected Partnership Chairs initiated the formation of 16 Action Groups to work under themes of Sustainability. In April, hosted by Trinity Centre, the Partnership saw the emerging Action Group’s share their ideas and visions as they invited organisations across the Partnership to join them. In July, the Quarterly Gathering welcomed Directors from the Bristol 2015 Company who shared news of next year’s headline programme – including a ‘Skills Exchange’ to support those members and groups who were rapidly developing and collaborating on projects and activities to make a greener Bristol.

This year’s final Gathering was held last week at The Park in Knowle, where over 100 members and supporters of the Partnership came together to hear the latest news and developments from the Partnership and Bristol 2015, learn more about getting involved with Bristol 2015 Programme and activities, and meet Action Group representatives.

After an introduction from Clive Harry, founder of The Park, Liz Zeidler (Chair of BGCP) gave updates on Bristol Green Capital Partnership; elections for the Chair and Vice-Chair of the Partnership are coming up in January 2015 (more news to follow!), the membership of the Partnership is steadily growing (with over 600 members now), and after receiving core funding from Bristol 2015, the Partnership has now recruited a Development Manager. Gary Topp will start in post at the end of November 2014, and will be working with the Partnership CIC to help develop the governance, structures and processes of the Partnership to ensure it’s long-term sustainability as it moves into 2015 and beyond. Both full-time employees of the Partnership are now based in the Bristol 2015 Office, to help ensure that Bristol Green Capital Partnership can play it’s crucial part in 2015 and fulfil it’s role as a legacy organisation. The message from the Partnership Chair was one of celebration of everything achieved in the last year, but that in 2015, Green Capital needs to extend it’s reach in to every corner of the city and ensure that the changes made are more than skin-deep.

Andrew Garrad, Chairman of Bristol 2015 Ltd, gave updates from the Bristol 2015 Company, including news that he is working full-time with the Company. Nicola Yates and Zoe Sears from BCC have also stepped in following a re-structure, with the company focusing on Bristol 2015 getting out and in to the city. Andrew also outlined objectives of Bristol 2015, including the facilitation of more green activity in the city, to attract global attention and sustainable investment in the city, and to provide grant funding.

The key message from both Liz and Andrew was the need for members of the Partnership and citizens in the wider city to get involved with the 2015 year! The Bristol 2015 website will be a key mechanism for this, enabling anyone in the city to add their events and activities to the programme and to feature as part of the programme by using the Bristol 2015 Brand. In doing so, organisations and projects can all help to shine a spotlight on current and future sustainable activities that help make Bristol a Green Capital.

Representatives from the Partnership Action Groups had a one minute slot each to provide an update from their Groups on the ideas and projects they are developing:

  • Water – projects including marking up hidden water courses in the city, introducing floating islands in the harbour to clean water and increase biodiversity, and re-introducing a network of drinking fountains to the city.
  • Resources – primary objective is to maximise re-use in the city, and have developed a re-use group including re-use networks, business and local groups, also trying to find new ways of engaging local businesses with re-use.
  • Resilience – have produced 10 tips on resilience, are exploring ways to explore and promote community resilience, and have developed a touring community arts project to increase awareness of resilience. Will be looking at a Resilience Champions scheme in 2015.
  • New Economy – working on a New Economics conference for 2015, scaling up community investment and ways to support community not–for-profit business models, and Green Bonds.
  • Communications – helping to develop communications strategies and a guide for Partnership Members
  • Inclusion – have developed guidelines as an aid for Action Group and member’s projects, promoting coverage, collaboration e.g. for social justice, and conflict.
  • Health & Wellbeing – projects being championed by the Health and Wellbeing Action Group include; TLC campaign by Bristol Royal infirmary to improve patient care whilst conserving energy; Green impact for health awards to encourage GP surgeries to participate in greening their practices; Kitchen on prescription to make nutritional approaches part of mainstream medical care; Wellbeing week to raise awareness of city-wide self-care providers and wellbeing events (Wellbeing week will be the focus of our next meeting on Tuesday 18 November at 5pm at the Be in Bristol bar on Whiteladies Road. If you would like to be involved in planning or delivery, please attend or contact
  • Food – projects include the Big Green Picnic with local schools; Green Blackboards in shops to raise awareness of sustainable supplies; an urban growing trail; Urban Growers course; Food Routes – to link up charities and surplus food from suppliers.
  • Place – have their own website under construction to be launched later this year to encourage collaboration from other action groups, and are inviting collaboration as they explore the One Planet Living Workshop (24th November at Create Centre)
  • Business – project around ‘Future of Work’ and exploring sustainability of work environments and practices in 20 years time; continue to help develop the Go Green Business engagement scheme
  • Evaluation – working as a group and with Bristol 2015 to look at how Bristol 2015 will show change and behavioural change, achieve investment and change; focusing on managing change and specific measures of that change
  • Energy – 4 x objectives are to increase renewables, increase energy efficiency, reduce energy poverty, and increase engagement with energy. AG is coordinating it’s members projects, working with partners including Bristol Green Doors, supporting schemes such as ‘Warm Up’ Bristol and looking forward to starting debates in 2015.
  • Travel – group aware of pure air quality, low levels of public transport usage, congestion – group working on Good Transport Plan and working with communities in Easton and other areas.

The Information Exchange in the 2nd hour allowed attendees to quiz Action Group representatives following their updates, and also to ask questions and share ideas around Bristol 2015 programme and branding, the upcoming ‘Go Green’ scheme, and Bristol 2015 Volunteer and Neighbourhood Arts Programme.

If you could like to know more about any of the topics covered in the QPG, please contact the Partnership Coordinator on

If you would like to submit your event or project to the Bristol 2015 programme or use the Bristol 2015 Brand, check the website for more information here or contact

If you would like to have all the latest information on the Go Green Business engagement scheme, you can sign up to the mailing list here.

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