Open Gardens Day

We’re taking part in this year’s Open Gardens, organised by Edible York.

We’ll be ‘open’ from 2-4pm on Saturday (11th July) – not that we ever really close! Come and see how the soft fruits are doing (here’s a clue – they’re doing amazing things!) and our new bug hotel.

You’re welcome to drop in for a chat, or have a bit of a dig and pull a few weeds, if the mood takes you.

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Street Re-Cycle 2015 – Selling, Swapping, Giving Away

On Sunday 7 June, 11am – 3pm, South Bank front gardens will be converted into a treasure trove of goodies.

Turn out the things you don’t need – clothes, gadgets, furniture, toys … and see your street turned into a swap-and-share event!

Meet your neighbours, take the tour round and pick up some hidden gems.

To register your address, contact Leah at £1 contribution to Planet South Bank.


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York eco-homes

York Open Eco Homes
Sat 16th & Sun 17th May 1-4pm
eco = ecological = economical

Find out how to turn your house into a comfortable and efficient home from people who have done it:

  • Visit living demonstrations of energy saving measures – there are 14 homes across the city opening their doors. Please check the website for individual home opening times.
  • Be inspired: take a closer look at draught-proofing, solar panels, insulation, low energy lighting, edible gardens and many other ways to make homes cosier and cheaper to run.
  • Get independent advice on how to give your own home an eco makeover.

Visitors who provide feedback will be entered into a prize draw for a free energy assessment by Yorkshire Energy Partnership (normally charged at £250).

The event is organised by St Nicks – York’s centre for nature and green living, and kindly funded by Green Open Homes network. Our event partners are Yorkshire Energy Partnership, Joseph Rowntree Housing Trustand City of York Council.

More info: or contact Ivana Jakubkova at St Nicks Environment Centre on 01904 411821 or


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York as a Human Rights City

You might be interested in this information (below) about York aiming to be the UK’s first Human Rights City.

“York Human Rights City Network is working in partnership with York CVS, City of York Council and North Yorkshire Police on a project to establish a set of Human Rights Indicators in York: the first step towards fulfilling York’s commitment to becoming the UK’s first Human Rights City. Indicators are a tangible way of measuring progress towards respect for the human rights of York residents year on year, and we believe that community groups, the voluntary sector and service users should be working together with statutory partners to decide what these are.

We would like to hear your views on a range of local human rights issues, and your opinions on what recommendations could be made to improve them. These will be put into a report launched in September at a conference launching our new bottom-up model of measuring human rights to other cities across the UK and Europe. We will also be conducting workshops at each of the partner agencies to present our findings.

In particular, we want to measure three aspects of human rights provisions in York:

  • The availability of services (eg. Are services available to fulfil a particular right?)
  • The accessibility and services to particular groups of people (eg. Are some peoplepriced out of access to services? Are there language barriers?)
  • The quality of rights and services (eg. How can the quality of the service be improved?)

Through surveying residents and interviewing community groups, we identified five main areas that we will be focusing on during the first year of the project, and will be conducting focus groups at York CVS (Priory Street Centre) during the week commencing the 18th May to explore these further. We would like to invite you to the groups you feel are most relevant to your work or interests.

  • Monday 18th May: Equality and Discrimination, Clementhorpe Room, 2 – 4pm
  • Wednesday 20th May: Health and Social Care, Denham Room, 2 – 4pm
  • Thursday 21st May: Housing, Clementhorpe Room, 2 – 4pm
  • Friday 22nd May: Education, Main Room, 10 – 12 am
  • Friday 22nd May: Standards of Living, Main Room, 2 – 4pm

We will be exploring the following questions:

  • What groups of people are particularly affected by this issue
  • What are the main factors behind issues in this area?
  • What would be the best way of measuring improvements over time?
  • What recommendations are within the reach of local agencies to improve this issue?

All focus groups will be held at York CVS (Priory Street Centre). Please email to register interest in any of the focus groups, letting us know if you have any access requirements. Refreshments will be provided, and the sessions will take no longer than two hours.

We would also like to be able to use case studies in our report. These may showcasing an innovative project or group working to tackle issues in York, or an anonymous story of a service user demonstrating the need for change. We are also looking for pictures and photos: this could be from a community group meeting, or a more personal understanding of what a particular issue (e.g. Housing) means for someone living in York. This will be supported by a social media campaign.

If you are unable to make a focus group but would still like to participate in the project, please feel free to email your thoughts, case studies and photos. We may be able to set up alternative groups or one on ones interviews if necessary.”

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Local Election Hustings – Tomorrow, Wednesday 29 April, 7.30pm

Voters in the Micklegate Ward have a chance to question their prospective Councillors at the Micklegate Ward Hustings.

7.30pm, Wednesday 29th April, in St Clements Church, Scarcroft Road.

We understand all the political parties and an independent will be present.

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Time to get sowing!

Spring is trying to spring (honestly!) … and it’s time to get some seeds in the ground. Come and join us this Wednesday at 9.30. We’ll be sowing beans and peas, so suitable for small hands as well as big!

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Eco-homes in York

The weekend of 16-17 May will see York’s first ever Open Eco Homes event, which will showcase and offer advice on eco-refurbishment and green building measures.

Could your home be part of it? Have you:

  • insulated your house?
  • installed double/triple window glazing?
  • got low energy lighting system?
  • installed renewable heating or electricity generation?
  • cut the carbon footprint of your home in any other ways?

The event aims to show a wide range of measures from small to big ones in different types of houses across the city. If you have made any energy-saving improvements in your home and would be happy to open doors to visitors between 1-4pm on one or both days of that weekend, please get in touch with Ivana at St Nicks to find out more: 01904 411 821 or

The event is funded by Green Open Homes network which has supported numerous similar events around the country. St Nicks’ partners for the York event are: Yorkshire Energy Partnership, Joseph Rowntree Housing Trust and City of York Council.

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