Press and community communications

(Scroll to base of page to see all events since 2005)


2013 Diary

19 September: Ashton Hayes community meet to discuss the future of the Golden Lion as a possible pub/community hub (with energy advice). Primary School at 7.30pm.

10 September: Garry Charnock attends the DECC Community Energy Contact Group meeting at DECC, Whitehall Place 3-5pm followed by group dinner.

5 September 2013: Prof. Roy Alexander and Kate Harrison talk about the project to staff at Chester Zoo.

4 September: Prof. Roy Alexander gives a talk on the Ashton Hayes Going Carbon Neutral project to Kingsley WI.

August 30th/31st 2013: Garry Charnock to participate in a two-day seminar at the Cheviot Centre, Wooler, Northumberland, NE71 6BL entitled 'What can Community Initiative Achieve?'. Thanks to Jaap Huurman of Communities of Sustainable Europe for sponsoring our travel (Ashton Hayes is a member) and to the excellent Chair, Professor Mark Shucksmith, Director of the Newcastle Institute for Social Renewal, Newcastle University. A big thank you also to the Organisers: Patsy Healey, David Buckle, Frank Mansfield (trustees) and Tom Johnston (Director) of the Glendale Gateway Trust. And the Sponsors: Northumberland Uplands Leader Action Programme/Defra; Newcastle Institute for Social Renewal; Glendale Gateway Trust.

August 2013: Going Carbon Neutral team attempts to take a one month holiday!

23-26 July 2013. Fabian Brökelmann from Amersfoort in The Netherlands arrives to carry out fact finding about our sustainability efforts in Ashton Hayes.  Fabian is involved in Research for the Dutch 'Raad voor het Openbaar Bestuur' (an advisory council/board on public government/authorities - issues for the Dutch Government) about the facilities and conditions for communities to accept responsibilities instead of the authorities.

16 July 2013: Ashton Hayes Community Energy Meeting and visit by Alison Bennion and representatives of Upton PC.

6 July 2013: Ashton Hayes Picnic in the Park - all welcome. See newsletter.

11 June 2013: Village Resilience Plan Launched at the WI Hall - first in CWaC region.

6 June 2013: DECC launches Call for Evidence - deadline 1 August.

5 June 2013: Ashton Hayes Community Energy Meeting

3 June 2013: Garry attends CWaC 'Green Deal Model' meeting.

20 May 2013: Garry attends DECC CECG Meeting in London to help finalise Call For Evidence document on Community Energy

23 March 2013: Earth Hour project takes place in Ashton Hayes 8:30-9:30 pm, led by the primary school children.

19 March 2013: Garry attends Community Energy Contact Group meeting at DECC.

12 March 2013: Garry Charnock presents latest activities in Ashton Hayes to Wrexham Environmental Network AGM at Glyndwr University.

27 February 2013: Snow Angels meeting in Ashton Hayes.

25 February 2013: Meeting with SPEN at the University of Chester to discuss village monitoring and video project.

25 February 2013: AHCE Board Meeting.

18 February: Garry Charnock meets with Yuval Millo and Matt Hall of Leicester/LSE universities to discuss next steps in 'Accounting for Communities' project (see below 17 November for more).

24 January 2013: Village meeting organised by the Neighbourhood Planning group at the school to discuss options for community facilities developments.

3 January 2013: Meeting with Will Woan of the Big Lottery to discuss sustainability projects and Awards for All.

2012 Diary

17 December: Snow Angels launch with children and other volunteers from village.

11 December 2012: Representative from the Big Lottery visits the village to discuss social enterprise and community engagement.

10 December 2012: Parish Council Monthly Meeting. 8pm Parish Rooms.

22 November 2012: AGM of Ashton Hayes Energy Company, 7.30 pm Parish Rooms, West End. All are invited to hear about the plans for the future and participate in discussions and become members.

17 November 2012: A busy day! Snow Angels meeting at the Golden Lion to ask for volunteers.

17 November 2012: Lecturers in Accounting from the London School of Economics, University of Leicester and University of Chester team up to start a special study of the project impact under the general heading 'Accounting for Communities'. We hope to determine the real value of working together in the village. In this initial stage, around 20 members of the community will be invited to a seminar on the project aims and objectives.

(left:) Dr Matt Hall of LSE Accounting Department presents the theory of Social Return On Investment (SROI) to residents

14 November 2012: Roy Alexander spoke about our project to Craven Action for Renewable Energy (CARE) and members of the public at the Cross Keys, East Marton, North Yorkshire.

14 November 2012: Garry meets David Compston from Weston Rhyn to discuss ideas to eco-renovate the Arts & Crafts Community Hall. Ashton Hayes GCN folk to speak to the community in 2013.

12 November 2012: Monthly Parish Council, a GCN report will be given.

11 November 2012: Ashton Hayes hears that it has won Government funding to run a 'Snow Angels' programme. The project is a joint effort by the Parish Council, Timebank and the Going Carbon Neutral project.

10 November 2012: (Below) MSc students from The University of Chester visit the village to discuss sustainability issues and community action.

1 November 2012: Roy Alexander and Garry Charnock give talk to Frodsham Rotary Club. 8pm.

25th October 2012: Roy Alexander gave a joint presentation with Geoff Murphy (ScottishPower Energy Networks) in the opening plenary session, "Working Together with Communities" of the Low Carbon Networks Fund Annual Conference at the Wales Millennium Centre in Cardiff.  Their presentation described SPEN's project to monitor and model electricity consumption and generation within the village with Roy focussing on its value in providing detailed information to assist us in our journey towards carbon neutrality.  
18 October 2012: Meeting of Ashton Hayes Energy Company Board to discuss AGM plans.


5-10 October 2012: Study visit by Rhona Pringle. Post Graduate Researcher at the School of Architecture Planning and Landscape, Newcastle University.

8 September 2012: Chester Zoo features our project in a new display.

July/August 2012: Project Holiday

30 June 2012: Garry gives talk at Lickey and Blackwell Parish Council
Residents’ Meeting. (Morning meeting) 10am start. Lickey Hills Primary School, Old Birmingham Road, Rednal, Birmingham B45 8EU.

11-16 June 2012: Turkish TV arrives to film some of our project work.

7 June 2012: Garry to speak and support the efforts of the Cilcain community in its attempt to become carbon neutral. At Cilcain Village Hall @7.30pm.

30 May 2012: Kate Harrison gives talk to Sustainable Hayfield, Hayfield Village Hall, 8.00pm. For more information contact organiser Laurie James at

30 May 2012: Garry invited to attend Ashden Awards annual ceremony at Royal Geographical Society, Exhibition Road, London SW7 2AR. 6.45pm. Keynote speaker is Dr Kandeh Yumkella, Dir. Gen of UNIDO and Chairman of UN-Energy. Host is Anna Ford.

22 May 2012: Roy Alexander presents our LEAF report findings at CWAC's LEAF meeting. Lymm United Reformed Church, Cheshire, 6pm. For more details contact Peter Bulmer

17 May 2012: AHCE CIC Board meeting.

1 May 2012: Garry attends DECC CECG meeting in London.

1 May 2012: Garry meets Giles Bristow and Will Dawson of Forum for the Future to share ideas.

23 April 2012: Roy Alexander send off the AHCE LEAF report to EST LEAF with 20 attachments! A great piece of work and many thanks and congratulations to all the LEAF team and suppliers.

18 April 2012: Peter Bulmer of CWAC chairs 'Climate Resilient Communities' discussion in Ashton Hayes, sponsored by DEFRA.

12 April 2012: Ashton Hayes Community Energy CIC holds board meeting, chaired by Roy Alexander.

16 March 2012: Ashton Kutcher PR stint hijacks our signs!

13 February 2012: Garry represents Ashton Hayes on DECC's Community Energy Contact Group (CECG) that gives informal advise to the Minister, Greg Barker, on community energy issues. Meeting at DECC in London.

19 January 2012: Meeting of Board of new village Energy Company (AHCE CIC) to discuss DECC LEAF award and other items.

19 January 2012: ScottishPower Networks installs a monitoring system in our pavilion. As it stands the monitor will monitor in detail the overall power consumption of the pavilion, so you will be able to see how self sufficient it is and it will also monitor the PV output, using this PV output profile it should be able to estimate fairly accurately the PV generation in Ashton Hayes every 10 minutes.

SPEN now provides us with regular newsletters describing our power use across the village.



17 January 2012: Angela Chou of the Environmental Protection Bureau Changhua County in Taiwan requests an official visit to Ashton Hayes in April 2012! (Eventually cancelled due to travel costs)

16 January 2012: DECC announces that we (AHCE CIC) have been successful in winning a LEAF award to the value of £42,500.

14 January 2012: Garry and Alex attend the Low Carbon Communities Network meeting in Oxford.

11 January 2012: Helsby High School students visit Ashton Hayes to see sustainability in action!

2011/12 Event diary


23 December 2011: Victor Cooper of Crowborough RFU and Ashton Hayes (Garry) share ideas on renewables and rugby clubs in Battersea, London.

13 December 2011: Helsby High School hears about the project from Garry and sustainability links are forged between Helsby and surrounding communities and South African schools.

9 December 2011: Board meeting of Ashton Hayes Community Energy Company (AHCE CIC) in the Golden Lion. 7.30pm. Roy Alexander is Chair.

3 December 2011: Garry Charnock speaks about the Ashton Hayes journey at the finals of the British Gas Energyshare competition - congratulations to all the winners and those who participated.

24 November 2011: DECC pays final review visit to the village under our LCCC programme.

16 November 2011:Meeting with representatives of Helsby School to discuss sustainability link ups in South Africa.

14 November 2011: Ashton Hayes Parish Council agrees handover of PV panels on school and pavilion to our new Ashton Hayes Community Energy Company. The generation is registered for FiTs in advance of the 12th December cut off date. Great work by Roy Alexander!

13 November 2011: Meeting group in Holt to discuss community energy solutions.

11 November 2011: Project update presented at the Carbon Leapfrog Network Event in London.

9 November 2011: Project members invited by EA Technology attend The IET Innovation Awards - Gala ceremony and dinner Intercontinental Hotel, London. (Left) We have jointly entered the sustainability category. Fingers crossed! Photo shows us at the 2007 EI Awards winnning the community initiative prize.

1 November 2011: Chester Sustainable Blacon Conference at the University of Chester: Roy and Garry give presentations on our project.

1 November 2011: Ashton Hayes Community Energy Company - a CIC - is born! This will manage our renewables generation on behalf of the community.

October 2011: Cheshire Life magazine produces 2 page update on our project.

25 October 2011: Our submission for the Ashden Awards for 2011/12 is completed

August/September 2011: Project Team take a holiday.

July 2011: Summer holidays at the Primary School allow construction of new low carbon classrooms with Solar PV array provided by the GCN project under DECC's LCCC.

14 July 2011: Garry to speak at the Community Group Buying Symposium, 2-5pm, Holiday Inn, Oxford. Tim Smit of the Eden Project is also speaking. Organised by Chris Pomfret - for details email

7 July 2011: Chester Chronicle carries the launch of the car and pavilion on page 2. Thanks Carmella De Lucia

7 July 2011: GCN team meet to discuss setting up of and Industrial Provident Society (IPS) to run our new PV and Electric Vehicle.

5 July 2011: Team from Commonwheels arrives to finalise the set up of our Nissan Leaf community car - the first of its kind in the UK.

5 July 2011: GCN project agrees to help Madeleine Marvin, the International Schools Co-ordinator at Helsby High School, They are currently involved in a number of international projects with partner schools in South Africa and one of the key themes is sustainability. Helsby's Year 7 Geographers are looking at carbon neutral communities as a project and we are hoping to share good practice with our schools in South Africa in order to design a joint Manifesto for a Carbon Neutral School. We aim to help them do this by hosting visits and speaking about our community.

4 July 2011: Community Electric car demonstration to children and parents of Ashton Hayes Primary School.

3rd July 2011: Opening of new recreationg field, play area (by ASHRA) and £250,000 low carbon sports pavillion and electric community car (Thanks to DECC LCCC funding). Afternoon event. All welcome.

Update: See also photos on Flickr from Lynn & Richard May.The children's play area was opened by the Lord Mayor of Chester Amy Pattinson and the Primary School Children sang songs and buried a time capsule. Our 'Letters from the future film' made its world premiere! Programme here.

June 2011: Nissan Leaf electric car test drive starts. Commonwheels management system installed. Garry shows off the car outside our community shop.

10th May 2011. CWAC grants planning permission for our new low carbon sports pavillion.

9th April 2011: Roy Alexander of the Ashton Hayes Going Carbon Neutral project to speak at the Shrewsbury Diocese sustainability event. Shrewsbury, Shropshire.

21 March 2011: Garry Charnock wins Climate Week award and attends launch at Lancaster House, London.

21 March 2011: Carbon Leapfrog and City of London 'Creating Low Carbon Communities' show at London's Guildhall, supported by Ashton Hayes, the University of Chester and Carbon Coop. Find out how to obtain commercial finance to support your low carbon vision. Garry Charnock has been shortlisted for the 'Inspirational Leader' award for his work in Ashton Hayes and at Carbon Leapfrog.

March has been a busy month involving the installation of PV panels at the school and our new zero carbon sports pavillion - both funded by the DECC LCCC grant.

15 March 2011: Garry presents community electric car management system to the Ashton & Mouldsworth Community Shop Committee.

17 March 2011: Garry views Nissan Leaf community electric car at Westway Nissan in Manchester. Then follows this with interview about the project on Real Radio, Manchester.

16 March 2011: Commonwheels agrees to provide electric car booking system for the Nissan leaf.

15 March 2011: GCN team meet Fordingbridge at EA Technology to discuss the new building plans.

14 March 2011: Parish Council meeting - full report on our project given by Roy Alexander.

14 March 2011: Garry & Anne Charnock visit Reepham, Norfolk to learn more about their Commonwheels community car hire system. Now they have 13 vehicles in surrounding villages. Thanks to Rex Warner and Marcus Armes (of UEA) for facilitating the visit.

1 March 2011: Garry talks about the project at The Lancaster School of Management.

25 January 2011: Garry Charnock to address Transition Maidenhead about the Ashton Hayes project. Open to all. Maidenhead Town Hall, 7.00 - 9.30 pm

24 January 2011: Ashton Hayes invited to discuss carbon neutral community initiatives with Dr Kim who is leading South Korea's drive to become the world's first carbon neutral country. That is no mean task, as we know!

19 January 2011: Dr Mary Gillie of supporter firm EA Technology holds meeting with the school, Chester Uni, CWAC and contractors to discuss the PV installation on the school roof.

18 January 2011: Chester Chronicle journalist, Naomi Dunning, interviews us about the plans to build low carbon changing rooms on our new playing field. The parish council, going carbon neutral team and the Ashton Hayes Sports and Recreation Association are working closely to deliver this exciting DECC-funded building.

16/17 January 2011: Garry and Alex attend Communities for Climate Action national conference in Russell Square London. Over 200 like-minded UK communities are trying to work in harmony to tackle climate change. Supported by DECC and EST. among others.

January 2011: David Ambrose provides free 3D architectural impressions of PV on school roof. Thanks David. he is now helping with other designs.

6 January 2011: Met with Alex Masri of DECC LCCC programme to discuss progress and discuss project schedules.

4 January 2011: Strategy meeting with Roy Alexander of University of Chester and Jonathan Atkinson of Carbon Coop on ideas for supporting other communities, following success of NESTA workshops.

2010 Event diary


15 December 2010: Meeting with lawyer Jeremy Robinson of Bird & Bird (pro bono advice via Carbon Leapfrog) on state aid and funding issues around DECC LCCC grants.


9 December 2010: Review meeting with Dialogue by Design in Golden Lion re progress on LCCC financed project.


December 2010: Ashton Hayes supports three-day 'Community Renewables School' run by Carbon Coop and Carbon Leapfrog with NESTA funding support. 35 Communities joined the workshop.


November 2010: See the video and interviews about our project made by our partner community in Norway.


7 October 2010: Cakes and bubbly draw a large audience at our 5th Anniversary event. The audience learned about the project history, found out how we did on our carbon surveys and how our behaviours have changed (download full summary), heard about the Nissan Leaf community electric car that we hope to have in Spring 2011 and discovered how the microgrid and heat store will work. We are also treated to the children's views on sustainable living and heard about Beth Barlow's plans for our new film entititled 'Letters from the Future'. Thanks to everyone who came along.

Find out more about green cars on


7  7 October 2010: Public Meeting 7.30 pm at the Primary school, Church Road to celebrate 5-years of community action and talks on how we will be spending the DECC £400,000 award on our microgrid and electric car. All welcome. Find out how we did in our 2010 carbon footprint survey.

4 October 2010: Parish Council meeting, project report given and announced success in winning £4000 additonal DECC grant to make a film with young people in the village.

21 September 2010: Garry Charnock attends DECC community energy workshop, London.

August-September 2010: Holiday period for the GCN team. University of Chester students process survey data.

17 July 2010: Tatton Biennial, Knutsford. Artist Fiona Curran in conversation with Garry Charnock on art and sustainability.
Fiona Curran: This time next year things are going to be different, Tatton Park 

13 June 2010: Tatton Hall art picnic, Beth Barlow to present the project. Knutsford.

10 June 2010: Nercwys and District Rural Association (NADRA) - Richard May to present at the AGM.

5 June 2010: Kate Harrison to speak on Earth Day at Singleton Environment Centre, Asford, Kent.

28 May 2010: University of Chester Students (left) complete the 2010 carbon footprint survey. So far they obtained responsed from around 1/3 of houses. Plus they completed land use mapping and biodiversity surveys. From left to right: Laura McAfee, Matthew Fox, Clare Davey, Abi Hall, Joshua Lepper, Mary Robinson, Jon Brain, Laura Jones.

20 May 2010: Presentation to the Boroughbridge Active Green Group, Yorkshire. Yore Vision, Renaissance Market Town. Invited by Chair, Jane Barber. At the High School. We'd like to say thanks to Yore Vision for their kind donation of £100 to support our project.

15 May 2010: Roy Alexander presents to the Sustanability Fair at Breakwater Country Park in Holyhead, Anglesey. Groundwork Wrexham and Flintshire.

10 May 2010: BSI Carbon Neutrality Conference, London. Garry and Roy to present.26 April: Garry Charnock to present at Tarporley Round Table meeting. Ashton Hayes now invited to support BSI's development of a Publcly Available Standard (PAS) for Sustainable Communities.

4 May 2010: Congratulations to the students and teachers (Mr James especially) for winning the 'Best storytelling' category in the UK Kids Witness News competition, run by Panasonic. The film focuses on the 'ripple effect' of the Ashton Hayes GCN project. For more click here.

19 April 2010: Meeting to discuss CHP plant for school, at the school.

15 April 2010: Project to send speaker (Garry Charnock) to talk in Ashby de la zouch, Ashby 2020

31 March 2010: Roy Alexander spoke about the project at the Cheshire and Warrington Social Enterprise Partnership event held in Ashton Hayes Village Hall."

30 March 2010: Completed LCCC NEA questionnaire on community enterprise.

25 March 2010: Project invited to send speaker (Kate Harrison) to Chorlton Big Green Festival

15 March 2010: Kate Harrison travels to Hebden Bridge, Yorkshire to support the Yorkshire Forward seminar on sustainability issues and good practice for the market towns.

6 March 2010: Ashton & Mouldsworth community shop formal opening takes place with the ribbon cut by long term shop owner, Helen Rimmer.


2 March 2010: Ashton Hayes project volunteers invited to speak at GovNet Sustainable Development Conference, London. (see Garry Charnock top and Prof. Roy Alexander below)

25 Feb 2010: Visit from Crichton Carbon Centre to discuss community projects, 2.30pm. Note their logo!

25 Feb 2010: DECC facilitator to discuss funding plans and engagement with members of project team, 4.30pm in the Golden Lion.

24 Feb 2010: Act on CO2 website writes feature on the project and posts photos on Facebook.

18th February 2010: Kate Harrison gives a presentation to Llanarmon Conservation Society, near Ruthin, Wales. Thanks to Rhiannon Gaffney for the invitation. About 35 people turned out in awful weather and asked lots of interesting questions. Rhiannon Gaffney, who invited me, often visits Ashton Hayes school.

Feb 2010: Country Living magazine cites Ashton Hayes as one of the UK's good places to live if for eco-pioneers.

23 January 2010: KWN TV visits from Eaton Bank School in Congleton to begin film production for their competition.

22 January 2010: DECC assessor for LCCC grant funding visits to discuss possible Phase II grant.

19 January 2010: GCN project to be presented at the Low Carbon Jordans launch. More soon.

8 January 2010: Second meeting with Will Thomas and other student film makers at Eaton Bank School, Congleton.



Events in 2009


7 December 2009: Parish Council meeting at Christmas drinks in the Lion.


3 December 2009: Johan and Katrina Prane from Sweden's national radio interview visitors (below) and Rebecca Handley, Katy Byrne, Harry Partington, Katie Barker at the pimary school. Plus Ms Corker. Broadcast scheduled for Friday 11 Dec.


3 December 2009: Mary Gillie from EA Technology explains micro-grid concept to six visitors from Scottish Power. Roy, Garry and Richard attend.


2 December 2009: Fact finding visit by representatives from BRE/Forum for the future/SEEDA to learn about engagement in climate change issues. See report.


30 November 2009: Possible visit by a French TV station crew.


27 November 2009: Ashton Hayes DECC/LCCC bid deadline.


19 November: Leapfrog annual party - celebrating its success in helping projects like ours.


17 November 2009: GCN microgrid project to be presented at the Institution of Mechanical Engineers DES seminar.


11 November 2009: Foreign & Commonwealth Office in Norway features our visit to Nøtterøy.


11 November 2009: Green-car-guide does feature on electric vehicles for Ashton Hayes.


9 November 2009: Garry and Roy meet the new headmaster of the primary School, Chris Priddy, to discuss the microgrid proposals. 0915.


4th November 2009: Roy Alexander presents to Tattenhall Wildlife Group, Cheshire. Thanks for the £30 project donation!


4th November 2009: BITC Seeing is Believing visit to Ashton Hayes talks to residents about renewal energy. Thanks to everyone for the support.


1 November 2009: Report to monthly Parish Council visit. PC agrees to apply to DECC for LCCC funding by 27 November.


27th October 2009: Members of our team to visit  Nøtterøy, Norway and join their project launch! See press cutting.


21 October 2009: Roy Alexander presents at University Research Seminar, Plymouth.


20 October 2009: Roy Alexander presents at Chester Cathedral 6th form even on climate change.


5th October 2009: Parish Council Meeting, Parish Rooms, West End, Ashton Hayes. 8pm.


24th Sept: Carbon Leapfrog Charity launch in London. We will be supporting them! 


15 September 2009: Roy Alexander presents at Queen Elisabeth Hall II Centre, London at DTA meeting.


5th Sept 2009: Garry to talk at NALC annual conference.


28th August 2009: Chester Chronicle features Ashton Hayes.


27th August 2009: Garry presents the project to the BITC Sustainable Communities Steering Committee in London.


11th August 2009: Ashton Hayes meets with Carbon Leapfrog organisation at HSBC tower in London to discuss future funding and support for CL launch on 24th September.


10th August 2009: Centre for Sustainable Energy report to EST features Ashton Hayes as an example of best practice.


10th August 2009: Garry Charnock and Dr Mary Gillie meet to discuss the microgrid project, next steps.


29th July 2009: Anglo Korean Society posts story about the project in its newsletter. To download the pdf, click here.


28th July 2009: Garry and Roy meeting with Ron Dembo of Zerofootprint to discuss the launch of the Villages Without Borders web software at the Carbon Leapfrog event on 24 September.


15th July 2009: Garry and Roy carry out interview for EDF in house magazine.


15th July 2009: Ashton Hayes project features in Low Carbon Transition Plan White Paper. Page 93.


15th July 2009: CBBC also arrive at the school to make a film with the children.


15th July 2009: BBC arrive in Ashton Hayes to mark the launch of the new white paper on climate change. Thanks to Sarah and Ruth and all the BBC team and to James Hygate of Green Fuels who brought his kit that turns chip oil to biodiesel.

see BBC Radio 4 Today programme

BBC News



9 July 2009: Despite our holidays we are hosting a fact finding visit from Business in the Community (BITC) folk who want to bring members to Ashton Hayes later in the year.


1st July to 1st September 2009: Team takes two month break to recharge our batteries!

30th June 2009: Roy Alexander gave a workshop presentation at the LSE Housing Seminar, "Climate Change Begins at Home", at Trafford Hall

24th June 2009: Garry joins Steve McNab of Leapfrog to explain the project aims to BITC meeting in Gresham St, London.

23rd June 2009: Roy Alexander attends Green Gown dinner at Imperial College as a shortlisted candidate. He did not come first but it was worth trying. Well done Roy!

4th June 2009: Garry obtains a donation of £200 towards the project from BG after talking to them about the project.

1st June 2009 : Garry and Roy to speak to Wrexham Borough Council about community carbon reduction.


21st May 2009: Kate Harrison visits Bridge in Kent to speak about Ashton Hayes at their annual Parish Council meeting. For details contact the Bridge Parish Clerk, Christobel Seath at or 01227 831085.


19/20/21 May 2009: Ashton Hayes invited to present to 'Sustainability live!' at the NEC. Presentation on 20th.

14 May 2009: Members of the team have coffee with Andrew Basden, Professor of Human Factors and Philosophy of Information Systems Salford Business School, University of Salford


14 May 2009: Roy and Garry to speak at the ethical investment meeting - Rathbone Greenbank Investor Day, Victoria Gallery and Museum, at Liverpool University.


30 April 2009: Our latest plans and the results of the year-long microgrid survey will be presented to the public at 7.30pm at the Primary School in Church Road (above). All are welcome.

22nd April 2009: Mary Gillie and Roy Alexander to give a presentation on our Microgrid feasibility study to the Energy Institute Northwestern and North Wales branch meeting at Shell Technology Centre, Thornton.


15 April 2009: Team meeting in Golden Lion to discuss production of new film and planning for 30 April meeting. 8pm.

20 March 2009: Sustainable Schools and Sustainable Communities event at the Friends Meeting House in central Manchester, between 12 - 4pm. Garry Charnock to speak.


18 March 2009: Roy Alexander presents at Groundwork meeting, Chirk near Wrexham.


12 March 2009: Roy Alexander presents poster at Carbon Connections Conference, NHM London.


5 March 2009: Garry Charnock to run workshop at CPRE Rural community action on climate change - NW conference. Click here for more. Contact Andy Yuille, Regional Policy Officer, CPRE North West for details.


8 February 2009: Ashton Hayes Parish Council Launches New Website.


5th February 2009: Team meeting in WI hall with Community Shop group and Microgrid Focus Groups. Roy Alexander and Mary Gillie present the current ideas for the Microgrid. Lisa Allman talks about progress with the community shop.


3rd February 2009: Liverpool JMU MA art students invite Garry to speak about the project and share ideas. 5.45 pm, New Art Building, Mount Pleasant.


2 February 2009: Parish Council meeting, 8pm, Parish Rooms, West End, Ashton Hayes.


27/28th January 2009: Roy Alexander presents at Groundwork Wrexham & Flintshire's interactive Climate Change events in North Wales in January at Glyndwr University, Wrexham on Tuesday 27th January and CAST, Bangor - Wednesday 28th January.


20 January 2009: Garry Charnock invited to speak to Mawdesley Green Team, Lancashire, about the Ashton Hayes project.


10-13 January 2009: University of Chester sponsors Prof. Roy Alexander, Tamara Hunt and Garry Charnock to visit the Zerofootprint organisation in Toronto, Canada, to start the 'villages without borders project' which aims to link villages across the world who are trying to take action to stem climate change. Garry Charnock, Tamara Hunt, Roy Alexander (University of Chester) meet Ron Dembo and Deborah Kaplan (Zerofootprint organisation) in Toronto and present our project to office staff.


7th January 2009: Mary Gillie, Roy Alexander and Garry Charnock meet Leapfrog at the offices of Travers Smith, Snow Hill, London, to discuss legal and other support for the Ashton Hayes project.


2008 Events list


9th December 2008: New 'microgrid sudy' section of our website developed. Click here to read more and obtain details and presentations.


25th November 2008: Garry Charnock briefs Conservative campaign manager Jessica Lennard about the project. She works with Gregory Barker (Shadow Minister for Climate Change). They say they are eager to publicise the project and assist other communities to replicate our work across the UK on a non-party politcal basis.


20th November 2008: Microgrid team and representatives of the Parish Council meet with the Primary School Head, Rob Ford, to discuss proposals for the school becoming more energy efficient. 3pm.


19th November 2008: Prof. Alexander gives a presentation about the project progress to a Renewable Energy Showcase event at the Welsh College of Horticulture.


14th November 2008: Garry Charnock meets Neil Jennings, National Student Switch Off Coordinator, to share ideas.


11th November 2008: Meeting at EA Technology Offices (12.30 to 2pm) to discuss the microgrid study.


8th November 2008: Like-minded folk in San Francisco, USA share their ideas on carbon neutral cooking with us! In Cool Cuisine - Taking the Bite Out of Global Warming San Francisco Bay Area chef Laura Stec with Dr. Eugene Cordero, Ph.D, San Jose State Professor of Meteorology. It addresses why global warming could be the best thing to happen to the culinary world in a long time, and reports on innovative science, business, and savory solutions to the Global Warming Diet. Cool Cuisine tells a story of really interesting people doing really inspiring things, and how you can too. The reader embarks on a exploration that feeds mind and mouth with art, science, pleasure, culinary tips and recipes on how to cook a globally cool cuisine. (


7th November 2008: Alison Ambrose gives interview to US Schoolchildren in Upper Saddle River about a 'going carbon neutral lifestyle'.


7th November 2008: The Chester Chronicle interviews our project Technical Director, Prof. Roy Alexander.


5th November 2008: Garry Charnock gives a talk about the project to students at Deeside College, Flintshire, North Wales.


3rd November 2008: Parish Council meeting. Prof. Roy Alexander gives full report of progress on the microgrid and tells us that we have received planning permission for erection of two weather stations in Ashton Hayes and Kelsall Ridge to help us assess our renewable energy options. Chester City Council gave a unanimous vote to the installations, which will be removed once the computations have been made. For a film on the microgrid project please click here.


See EA Technology presentation here.






30 October 2008: Professor Roy Alexander presents his inaugural lecture "Lichens, badlands and community carbon: Some reflections on environmental sustainability" to a entralled audience at The University of Chester. See here (left to right) with Dr Andrea Mageean of Chester City Council, Dr Mary Gillie of EA Technology, Roy with gown and John Tweed, Architect.


29 October 2008: Planners pass our application to install two temporary weather stations to help us assess our renewable resources (wind and solar) in the Parish.


28 October 2008: Tarporley, Cheshire: Rotary Club: Prof Roy Alexander talks to around 30 people about the Ashton Hayes Going Carbon Neutral project and shows our DVD. See photo.


14th October 2008: Planning decision date for microgrid anemometers to assess village wind resources for microgrid project.


6th October 2008: Project reports to monthly Parish Council meeting, Parish Rooms, Ashton Hayes.


3rd October 2008: Microgrid progress meeting at EA Technology Capenhurst between Carbon Connections, University of Chester, Ea Technology and Ashton Hayes Going Carbon Neutral.


2nd October 2008: Microgrid focus groups kick off meeting at Parish Rooms Ashton Hayes - presentations from EA Technology and University of Chester. 6.30-9pm.


18th September 2008: Hilary Benn, Environment Minister, spends several hours in the village meeting the schoolchildren and residents to discuss the project and learn about the microgrid study.


9th September 2008: Meeting with UEA Carbon Connections and Cred team to discuss sharing of information between communities.


8th September 2008: Meeting with Simon Berry and Samantha Adams to discuss Ruralnet/Zerofootprint project proposal for 'villages without borders'.


18th August 2008: Garry Charnock presents at the Plus Dane Housing Group Ltd Green Day conference at the Wesley Centre, Sandbach, Cheshire.




Prof. Roy Alexander presents the microgrid study and to Ashton Hayes residents in the Primary School Hall. Steve Holland filmed the event and this will be included in our next DVD.


16th July 2008: Microgrid Public meeting at the Primary School, 7.30 to 9pm. EA Technology and The University of Chester to host the meeting. All welcome.


16th July 2008: Cheshire Low Carbon Communities meet at the Village Hall Ashton from 6.30 onwards.


Pam Holland and Christiine Robinson on our Heyday stand.


12th July 2008: Ashton Hayes Primary School Heyday event. Our project representatives will be there to give away our new DVD (3 films) and explain the results of our latest footprint survey by the University of Chester. See also the Live Earth Film on You Tube.


10th July 2008: It's Your Community meeting hosted by Salad for O2. Ashton Hayes invited to share experiences.


8 July 2008: Energy Institute Workshop on Reducing demand, increasing efficiency - Institute of Directors, London. Garry to participate. For more details: Jacqueline Warner,Events Manager.

t: +44 (0)20 7467 7116/ m: 07810 553973/ f: +44 (0)20 7580 2230

e: and


3rd July 2008: Meeting with residents of Llangollen, Wales to discuss their community initiative plans on climate change.


3rd July 2008: Prof. Roy Alexander gives keynote address at the ENABLE Annual Event 2008- Climate Friendly Communities, NSPCC, 3 Gilmour Close, Beaumont Leys, Leicester. 0900.


26th June 2008: Prof. Roy Alexander gives a short talk on the project at the Energy and Existing Homes event, Trafford Hall, Chester, sponsored by HOME.


29th June 2008: Garry Charnock meets with Dr Ron Dembo of in London to see how their web-based fooprint software might be used to link like-minded villages across the world.


24th June 2008: Team members from Ashton Hayes support launch on neighbouring community project in Tarvin.


24th June 2008: Project spnosor, EA Technology opens its new Energy Innovation centre at Capenhurst.


21 June 2008: Thanks to environmental journalist Stephen Leahy for his coverage of our project.


20th June 2008: Oxfam pays a second visit to Ashton Hayes to discuss collaboration with village projects outside the UK. See Oxfam's video on how climate change can affect life in Bangledesh villages.


ASHTON/BANGLADESH LINKS DEVELOPING: Our primary school children (Class 2) hear about how life in Bangladesh is affected by climate change. Ziaul Hoque Mukta (beige jacket) and Md. Khalid Hossain (to his left) of Oxfam show a film depicting life in the village of Sahena Begum (who visited the school on 6th March 2008). Headmaster Rob Ford (left of screen) is hoping to work with Oxfam on a joint educational project. We are also planning to support Sahena's request for solar lighting in Kunderpara village.


17/18th June 2008: University of Chester team exhibits their work on the Ashton Hayes project at the Cheshire Show.


13th June 2008: Garry Charnock presents the Ashton Hayes expereince to BG staff in Reading.


12th June 2008: Community meeting in Ashton Hayes called to discuss the future of our village shop and Post Office. We are hoping to support the shop with a community effort.


9th June 2008: Forum for the Future 'Climate Change Week'. Garry to present to Masters students.


5th June 2008: Kate Harrison presents to Roundhay Environmental Action Project in Yorkshire at a well attended meeting (see below).


31 May 2008: Request from Hethersett Environmental Action Team (HEAT) near Norwich - to attend their village information day. We hope to send someone along, or our DVD.


22nd May 2008: Our vicar, Brian Perkes presents to Chester Diocesan Rural Ministry Group (about 25 rural parishes).


12th May 2008: Ashton Hayes Parish Council Meeting, 8pm, Parish Rooms, West End.


9th May 2008: Garry to attend CPRE low-carbon rural settlements meeting for volunteers, in London.


28th April 2008: Cliff Dressel and other members of Stroud Council pay us a fact finding visit.


25th April 2008: Steve Holland films a greetings message to the Telluride Film Festival Audience in California, USA. We've been invited to attend and introduce our film, but we are doing this to keep our carbon footprint (and costs!) low.


25th April 2008: Garry Charnock and David Robinson attend EPPlus training session in Winsford on the use of an infra red camera to detect heat losses in houses. The plan is to borrow the camera from EPPlus to help residents to reduce energy losses from their houses.


23rd April 2008: Roy Alexander gave a presentation at the launch of Climate Friendly Communities Northamptonshire. The event took place at the Sixfields stadium (Northampton Town FC's ground).


23rd April 2008: Roy Alexander had a useful interview and discussion with Dee106.3. We are planning to do a regular slot on their Breakfast show during the summer featuring their 'Breakfast Kids' and their families (plus Roy!). They are also working with Delamere Forest to encourage people to use the train.


Left to right: Alicia Burgum, Cara Peers Gemma Morton, Lee Davies

17th April 2008: Team meeting for AHGCN members. 8pm Garry's House. We hope to meet the students from the University of Chester who are carrying out the 2008 survey. Preview of our new film 'Our Footprint, Our Journey...the next steps'.


14 April 2008: Chipperfield Parish Council Annual Parish Meeting. Garry to address the meeting about the Ashton Hayes project. Chipperfield is a parish of similar size and structure to Ashton Hayes and is located in Hertfordshire in the borough of Dacorum (Hemel Hempsted) just north of Watford. Further details from Dr Mike Bradshaw. Email:


10 April 2008: Goostrey Annual Parish Meeting: Speaker from Ashton Hayes to address the meeting about the progress of the Going Carbon Neutral project. 7.30pm in the Village Hall, Goostrey. Email of more details.


23rd April 2008: Roy Alexander gives presentation to "Climate Friendly Communities in Northants".


20 March 2008: Lynn and Richard May to join Low Carbon Communities Group's second meeting in Bristol.


17th March 2008: Road to Mouldsworth station to close for 4 weeks to complete our 'Carbon Neutral Footpath. If you'd like to know about the footpath construction plans, here is a link to the Cheshire CC site that describes the plans.


17th March 2008: Christine Robinson to speak about our project to Montgomery Energy Group in north Powys, Wales.


12th. March 2008: Kate Harrison to speak at the St Margaret's Village (Near Dover - Launch of its Going Carbon Neutral Project, 7.p.m. More details from Brenda Pau,l Chair of the St Margaret's Parish Council. (Near Dover).


11th March 2008: Garry Charnock gives presentation to students at Frodsham College on their Global Awareness day.


10th March 2008: Our new display cabinet arrives to house our Clarion and EI awards (Parish Rooms)


6th March 2008: We had an extremely interesting visit today from Oxfam who brought along two people, Sahena Begum and Farid Hasan Ahmed, from Bangladesh. They wanted to know what we are doing as a village to help stem climate change but the most interesting part of the visit occurred at the Primary School where they told the 5-7 year olds about life in flood stricken villages where they live. The children were enthralled and asked some very insightful questions (through an interpreter for Sahena - Fariyah Rahman), for almost an hour. They were amazed to hear that Sahena and fellow villagers had no electricity, gas or lighting and had their houses completely destroyed by freak floods every three years or so. Sahana, who prior to this trip had never been on a bus, plane or train, told us that things were getting worse each year and that Oxfam was helping them to build refuges on higher ground and also providing some basic facilities. But she would dearly love a solar panel to power lights to enable children to study in the evening. Ashton Hayes schoolchildren probably went home tonight wondering how our lifestyles and living conditions can be so different


We are now hoping to keep in touch with the village via the GCN project and the school and see how we might work together to help them and spread the word about the impact climate change is having on the poorest people in the world. For information on the Oxfam project contact


6th March 2008: Heyday Magazine and Chester Chronicle join us for a photoshoot.


5th March 2008 - Roy Alexander gives presentation to Bedford Council Sustainability Meeting.


March 2008: Construction of our new footpath to Mouldworth station should be completed (see above), enabling residents to walk to the nearby railway station safely and providing an opportunity to leave their vehicles at home.


3rd March 2008 - Roy Alexander gives presentation at LGIU Seminar "Becoming an ethical town - from fairtrade to plastic bags" Local Government Information Unit, London.


3rd March 2008: Rural Advocate's report which published. Ashton Hayes gets a good mention so we're incorporating a quote into the paper Prof. Roy Alexander written for the Journal of Local Economy.


3rd March 2008: Ashton Hayes PC monthly meeting. 8pm Parish Rooms, West End.


1 March 2008: Christine Robinson to present at ECO DAY from 10 - 2pm at Burcot village hall, near Bromsgrove.


1 March 2008: Manchester Climate Forum conference: Climate Change: how do we prepare?. There will be a series of workshops and discussions and debates around that theme. Roy Alexander will speak on behalf of Ashton Hayes on lessons learned, challenges ahead. Contact conference organiser Marc Hudson

0161 232 8177 or visit Update: An audience of about 40 attended.


28 February 2008: Roy Alexander and Mary Gillie to attend Carbon Connections conference, RIBA building, Portland Place in London.


28 February 2008: Localeyes meeting in Bristol - we have been invited and are trying to send someone along. Contact Oliver Bramford (07905 093894). To find out more visit their site


27th February 2008: Roy Alexander gave a live interview on City Talk Radio (Liverpool) about Energy Saving Day (E-Day), energy saving, carbon saving and the example of Ashton Hayes.


22nd February 2008: Roy Alexander gives presentation to staff at Manchester Airport


22 February 2008: Meeting with Nick Burton, Headteacher, Merton House School, Chester to discuss how the school might extend its eco-activities. (Sorry - we had to postpone this meeting)


20 February 2008: Garry Charnock to speak at the Carbon Neutral Uttlesford Conference. For further information contact Will Cockerell, Principal Environmental Health Officer, 01799 510 581,



20th February 2008: Roy Alexander gives presentation to University of Chester Sustainable University Network as apart of its Perspectives on Sustainable Development series.


19 Feburary 2008: Interview with Jo Finney of HeyDay magazine (no longer produced).


1 February 2008: Ashton Hayes features in Cheshire Life 'Green Issue'.


31st January 2008: Change Productions to visit Ashton Hayes around midday to meet residents and discuss film ideas. Meet in the Golden Lion just after noon. This project will be running independently of the going carbon neutral project.


28th January 2008: Chester Food Conference: Garry to speak about carbon neutral cuisine! Grosvenor Hotel - Pulford.Contact Conference organiser, Stephen Wundke, Scwirrel MAS, 29 Grosvenor St, Chester, CH1 2DD, 01244 350 298 for details.


24th January 2008: United Utilities to take interested people from Ashton Hayes to its Ellesemere Port plant to see a small scale methane digestion/power plant. More details in timing to come soon. Evening visit is planned courtesy of UU. UPDATE: UU has kindly sent us their presentations for the evening.


14th January: Ashton Hayes Parish Council Meeting, Parish Rooms, 8pm.


2007 Events list


27th December 2007: Final newsletter of 2007 issues to residents of Ashton Hayes. Thanks to Lynn and Richard May of M&M Communications for the design and layout and help with distribution.


22nd December 2007: Rob Blackhurst writes a half page update on the project in the Financial Times Saturday magazine.


18th December 2007: Cheshire Life phones for a project update for its February 2008 issue.


6th December 2007: Garry Charnock supports the Crichton Carbon Centre's meeting to engage the community of Dumfries, Scotland, in climate change activities. Robert Burns Centre, 7pm.


5th December 2007: Chester Chronicle phones to get a 'Christmas Carbon Neutral Update'.


5th December 2007: Rob Blackhurst (photo) of the Financial Times calls to get an update on project activity.


4th December 2007: Roy Alexander gave an interview to Industry UK magazine for an editorial article to be published in conjunction with an announcement of the Energy Institute Awards for 2007. The article will appear in the New Year.


3rd December 2007: Ashton Hayes Parish Council adopts terms of reference for the Ashton Hayes Going Carbon Neutral Sub-commitee and votes unanimously to support the 'Carbon Connections' bid for funding by The University of Chester and EA Technology who wish to help us examine the feasibility of installing a renwables microgrid in the village.


1 December 2007: Margaret, Alison, Cathy and David put up carbon neutral christmas tree outside the Golden Lion. Well done guys!


29th November 2007: Roy Alexander gave a presentation about the project to 80 planners from across the North West Region at the Royal Town Planning Institute's North West Update Event, "A Greener Future for Planning" held at Chester Racecourse.


29 November 2007: Tracey to attend workshops at Cafe Conference in Newcastle.


28th November 2007: Roy Alexander gave a presentation about the project and CREd Chester at the "Development and Climate Change" event, sponsored by the Chester World Development Forum and the Department of Geography and Development Studies, held at the University of Chester. Audience about 25.


27th November 2007: Team meeting at Garry's house to discuss new Terms of Reference with Parish Council as part of our drive to become a Quality Parish Council.


20 November 2007: Hugo Deynem to address Uttlesford District Council and give a personal perspective on the project.


15 November 2007: Ashton Hayes shortlisted for EI awards (Community Initiative) at the Sheraton, London. 10 people associated with the project are attending. WE WON THE COMMUNITY INITIATIVE AWARD!



Thursday 15th November 2007: Ashton Hayes Parish Council won the 'Community Initiative' prize for its Going Carbon Neutral project from the Energy Institute (EI) at an awards dinner in the fabulous art deco dining room at the London Sheraton Park Lane Hotel. Will Carling OBE, former England Rugby Captain (second from right), presented a series of awards which are run in partnership with Deloitte. Garry Charnock (third from left) and Professor Roy Alexander (fourth from left) received the award on behalf of the Parish Council. The Community Award was sponsored by Hindustan Petroleum Company. For more details visit the EI website.


8 November 2007: Garry updated our blog section on DEFRA Climate Challenge website.


8 November 2007: Tracey to address Canterbury Conference.


6 November 2007: Roy Alexander spoke about Ashton Hayes at a Good Practice Seminar on "How to do Sustainable Economic Development" at LGIU (Local Government Information Unit) in central London to an audience of about 30 representatives from various councils around the country. In the evening he spoke to Zero Carbon Bedford which is a community carbon reduction initiative in Castle Ward, Bedford. Audience was about 30 again.


Possible 22/24 October 2007: CPRW Youth Conference, North Wales - Post Peak Oil Scenario.


23rd October 2007: Garry presents at PLANED launch of their energy network in South Wales at Narbeth. see here for more.


20 October 2007: Roy Alexander attends RGS Interdependence Day in London.


16th October 2007: Roy Alexander gives presentation at Green Suffolk conference.


10 October 2007: Kate Harrison gives talk on Ashton Hayes to Blaenau Ffestiniog, Wales.


10/11th October 2007: Tracey (left) and Garry attend Ruralnet meeting in Sutton Coldfield. Garry to address the delegates.


6/7 October 2007: Garry Charnock addresses NALC annual conference in Bournemouth.


5/6th October 2007: Helsby Eco-Fair - volunteers to attend from Ashton Hayes


3rd October 2007: Garry to meet with Good Energy representatives in Wiltshire to discuss Ashton Microgrid plans.


3rd Octobe 2007r: Local journalist Frances Laing visits Ashton Hayes.


3rd October 2007: Roy Alexander gives talk in Upton, near Chester.


2nd October 2007: Garry to address Wootton & East Hunsbury parish council (Northampton) meeting at 7.30pm (on way back from Norwich!)



2nd October 2007: Garry to attend meeting at UEA with Cred and Carbon Connections.


29th September 2007: Tracey attends all day conference in the Peak District, Lady Manners, Bakewell.


28th Sept 2007: Team to attend the Clarion Award Ceremony to see if our shortlisted film 'Our Footprint, Our Journey, has won! (Note as of November 2012 we had almost 7000 'likes' on YouTube for this film.


27th September 2007: Garry Charnock to speak at the Herts County Council AGM, 6pm for 6.30pm at County Suite, Herts County Council, Hertford. SG13 8DN.


25th September 2007: Tracey attends Stretton Climate Care meeting and shows our DVD.


24th September 2007: Garry gives short talk to the Restaurant Association of Chester and Cheshire about Going Carbon Neutral. Duke of Portland Pub, Lach Dennis, Cheshire.


24th September 2007: Tracey gives presentation at the Community Futures event in Preston, Lancs.


18th September 2007: Ashton Hayes teams up with NEA to host village 'walkabout' of carbon neutral initiatives.


14th September 2007: Tracey attends launch of Mold Going Carbon netural and gives press interviews.


12th September 2007: Team members speak at the 21st Century Village meeting in Middlewich, Cheshire, 7pm. Roy/Tracey


11th September 2007: Presentation to councillors and representatives of the Sustainability Group of Stockport Council


11th September 2007: Team meeting at 8pm Ashton Hayes Parish Rooms: To discuss the next steps.


3 Sept 2007: Tracey talks to Doddleston Parish Council


1st September 2007: team restarts activity after summer break


JULY/AUGUST - team takes a well earned holiday


3rd August 2007: HES completes three free energy audits of Ashton Hayes houses - Thanks HES!


13th July 2007: Richard May will give a presentation to Voluntary Action Cumbria’s 21st Century Village event in Penrith.


18th July: Rural Advocate Stuart Burgess visits Ashton Hayes to hear the views on the community on adopting a low carbon lifestyle - Golden Lion at lunchtime and then a walkabout to meet residents. Garry and Roy have also been invited to dinner to discuss ideas with local leaders at Willington Hall. See report


13th July 2007: Garry Charnock will be in Petersfield, Hampshire meeting an invited group of County, District and Parish Councillors, and members of the public from across Hampshire, who are interested in our project.


11th July 2007: 6:30-9:00pm. Bank of America (MBNA Europe), Chester Business Park Light (locally sourced) refreshments will be provided. Linda Williams - Tel 01244 402364. The choir of Ashton Hayes Primary School will open the event by singing their “Carbon Neutral Rap”.



11 July 2007: Freelance photographer Neil White spends three days in the village preparing a photo-journalism piece. If you wish to buy high quality photos of our project, contact Neil directly on 07984 430753 or visit


10th July 2007: Ashton Hayes GCN team meet Frodsham Forward team to discuss ways of inspiring Frodsham and Helsby and other locations in Vale Royal to adopt low carbon liefestyles.


9th July 2007: Janet Gullvåg, vice chairman of Nøtterøy Arbeiderparti (Nøtterøy Labour Party) is working with the island called Nøtterøy with a population of approx. 22,000 inhabitants to inspire it to follow the Ashton Hayes example. They have asked for support for their idea but have agreed that we are not aligning politically with the project.


9th July 2007: Ashton Hayes to take part in day of workshops for schools and local businesses at Chester Grosvenor Park (check the blog for more details soon)


8th July 2007: Come and meet residents from Ashton Hayes at the Only One Earth Festival in Chester’s Grosvenor Park



(top) Garry Charnock (yellow shirt) and Barry Cooney (White Shirt) await our interview with BBC's Graham Norton with a degree of trepidation! Below is a studio shot of 'our pal' Graham and Zac Goldsmith (right). A fun if rather surreal day! Barry is below too...awaiting make up!


7th July 2007: Live Earth concert features 7-minute film on Ashton Hayes by Inigo Gilmour. Audience of 2 billion expected to see this around the world.


5th July 2007: Garry Charnock to represent the Ashton Hayes Going Carbon Neutral project in Whittington, Staffordshire.A great meeting and lively audience at Whittington. Good luck with the banning of incandescent light bulbs!


4th July 2007: Garry Charnock and Roy Alexander discuss work at The University of Chester.


3rd July 2007: We will be entertaining a group working on a project at Middleton-in-Teesdale “one of our aims is to reduce the carbon footprint of the village. We have like yourselves have completed a baseline study and have commissioned a company to do a full feasibility study to "map" the types of renewable technologies which could be appropriate for the village. We have just had an open day to invite local residents to see what technologies are available and how they operate”. Says organizer Lorraine Robinson


28th June 2007: Tracey Todhunter to attend Ruralnet conference in Rugby.


18th June 2007: Ashton Hayes features in the Independent's Green Living section.


17th June 2007: Congregation at Frodsham Methodist Church watch “Our Footprint / Our Journey”


15th June: Second feature on Ashton Hayes appears in The Big Issue.


14th June 2007: Johanne Mygind visits Ashton Hayes from Denmark to report on our efforts for daily newspaper “The Information”.


12th June 2007: Representatives of Ashton Hayes meet with Frodsham Forward to discuss plans to make Frodsham the first Carbon Neutral Market Town.


The Daily Telegraph runs a feature on Wolvercote in Oxford. Members of the Wolvercote team came to our conference in April – read what they say about Ashton Hayes:


6th June 2007: Garry & Anne Charnock give presentation at the Juice Bar, Chester, to local residents.


1 June 2007: Student team completes 2nd year survey. Thanks for an excellent effort. Results will be analysed by the University of Chester and published in summer.


31st May 2007: German TV viewers find out about Ashton Hayes. This is the link to the little internet site that NDR (North German Radio and Television) set up on the piece, and if you click the film roll symbol on the top left you should be able to see the movie. (,3147,OID4030512_REF2482,00.html) Thanks to Björn Staschen and the rest of the team.



Garry Charnock chats to Bjorn and the crew\


1 June 2007: German TV team visit Ashton Hayes to find out more.


Tracey Todhunter (left) and Yvonne Dowan (right) talk to Mike and Meridith Allan about energy savings.


29th May: Visit from Mark Allan, General Manager Project Planning and Design from Australia's 'VicUrban' - the Victorian Government’s sustainable urban development agency. We shall be taking 'tea' and sharing ideas!


Mark's organisation is committed to providing excellent public outcomes for the State of Victoria. VicUrban works in partnership with the public and private sector and carries a diverse portfolio of projects including: Melbourne Docklands; new suburban communities; urban renewal projects; and Transit Cities. The organisation works in urban developments across metropolitan and provincial Victoria.

The following sustainability objectives underpin delivery of VicUrban projects:

Community well-being;


Commercial success;

Urban design excellence; and

Housing affordability.


28th May 2007: Mark Lynas (second from left) debates climate change with David Milliband and Jeremy Leggett (far left) and suggests to the audience that they check out the Ashton Hayes project! Thanks Mark.


24th May 2007: Bjørn Westlie, Norwegian journalist visits the village to find out more


23rd May 2007: Romanian TV visits Ashton Hayes


21st May 2007: BBC Brazil TV team come to the village to prepare a web broadcast. You can see the related article on

And watch the video


18th May 2007: Rory Cellan_Jones interviews residents about energy savings in preparation for broadcast on 22nd May when the Energy White Paper is launched.


14th May 2007: Ashton Hayes gains coverage across Canada. CBC spent a day in the village talking to residents and finding out about reducing energy consumption in British homes. Read the response about us on this Canadian blog


14th May 2007: Ashton Hayes to address the deanery synod - respresentatives of upto 21 parishes from around Chester - at St Philip's church in Kelsall 7.45 p.m.


10 May 2007: Ashton Hayes is visited by a multinational team of Generals (!) keen to learn more about the environmental committment of our community. Thanks to the Golden Lion for an excellent lunch.


8th May 2007: Radio 5 Live visit the village to record a piece about our project


4th May 2007: Kate Harrison speaks to Settle Chamber of Trade about our project. Thanks for the positive feedback Steve.


1st May 2007: Jason Teasedale visits Ashton Hayes to write a report for The Big Issue in the North Environment issue


May 2007: Second university survey starts in Ashton Hayes to assess how our actions have cut our emissions. The survey will tak about 5 weeks.


28th April 2007: Ashton Hayes is main feature in the Environment Issue of the Financial Times Saturday magazine. Garry is featured on the cover and members of the team and community are interviewed in an excellent 6-page interview by Rob Blackhurst. The article has drawn interest from around the world.


19th April 2007: Ashton Hayes features in Sweden's Dagens Samhalle newspaper (page 14). Thanks to Sven Cahling for visiting the village and joining in with the pub quiz!


18th April 2007: We get another mention on Treehugger – read about us and a similar project in Bollington.


17th April 7.30pm: Ashton Hayes appears in ITV 'Making a difference' programme on climate change. Thanks to Fred Talbot and Jon Mitchell and the crew for such a great programme.


14th April 2007: 1st National Grass Roots conference on carbon neutrality - organised by Ashton Hayes, Sponsored by DEFRA. Come and hear what others are doing and then enjoy a party after the meeting!


A word of thanks. The 2007 Calendars of Climate Change were supplied to our Conference by eco-publishers Flipside Vision. Thanks to Diana Korchien for becoming a sponsor..


Run up to conference: Too busy to list all the activities (!) but a big thanks to all the team and press for support and a really huge thanks to Tracey Todhunter for all the conference planning.


5th April: Ashton Hayes to speak in Leamington Spa at the Pump Rooms 10.30am . Tracey and Garry attended. Thanks to all the folk who turned out - interesting day full of innovative ideas..


5th April 2007: Our village pub features in The Morning Advertiser:


3rd April 2007: Roy Alexander invited to speak to a group of Cumbria County Councillors in Kendal on climate change.


3rd April 2007 2007: Garry carries out live interview for BBC world service radio at 2.30pm in Manchester.


2nd April 2007: Ashton Hayes Parish Council receives second tranche of DEFRA grant for 2007/8 communications support (Note: This money cannot be used to finance village projects). Thanks to DEFRA Climate Challenge fund for the £12,700.


2 April 2007: Dr Roy Alexander features on Bay Radio, Morecambe, talking about the climate change meeting in Kendal on 3rd April.


2 April 2007: Garry visits Glasgow University to discuss the development of the new Carbon Centre at Crichton in Dumfries, Scotland. We allow them to use our logo design for free!


30th March 2007: Garry Charnock presents to BRAF Conference 2007 "Rural Action: Can it Make The World of Difference?" Rufus Centre, Flitwick, Bedfordshire.


29th March 2007: Garry Charnock & Roy Alexander Talk to Barrow Woodland group on tree planting/carbon sinks.


Pub spirit!: Barry Cooney (centre), landlord of the Golden Lion pub in Ashton Hayes, is pictured here selecting the winning ticket in a raffle for people who assisted Ged Edwards (left) with his research in the village. The prize, dinner for two at the Golden Lion, kindly donated by Barry and Diane Cooney, was won by Mrs Kathryn Bryant of The Meadows. Congratulations!

Ged is in his final year of an MSc in Climate Change and Sustainable Development at De Montfort University in Leicester. His research is independent of the project and has the full support of the Parish Council, with Ken Hartley representing on the right. Ged is examining the factors that may prevent people from taking part in environmentally-friendly behaviour and initiatives like the Ashton Hayes Going Carbon Neutral Project - and what motivates people. The results will be out later this year.


Sunday 25th March 2007: Ashton Hayes features in The Observer newspaper. Thanks Juliette!


23 March 2007: Tim Brownlow (Lecturer in Environmental Science) and students from SAC Auchincruive, Ayr, Scotland drop into the Golden Lion to discuss the project.


22nd March 2007: Team meeting, Lane End Farm, 8pm plus Granada filming in Ashton.


21st March 2007: Ashton Hayes features on New Zealand TV news.


21st March 2007: Michel R Tin Sive informs us that we have appeared in "Le Mauricien" - the top evening paper in Mauritius with a readership of around 40-50 K. The story alerted him to our project.


21st March 2007: Ashton Hayes feartures in Ecologist magazine (April issue), along with other cool communities!


Weds 21st March 2007: Roy Alexander invited to give a lecture on Community Carbon Reduction at Liverpool John Moores University.


Wed 21st March: DEFRA CCF workshop in London. Garry & Tracey to attend.


19th March: BBC TV crew films around the village.


18th March: Thanks to the Ryder family for sharing their electricity saving log..


18th March: Mauritius Lions Club contact us and leave a message on our blog. Thanks Michel.


18th March: Visit to see Brian Spencers low energy house at Peel Hall.


17th March 2007: Tracey Todhunter presents our project to the MARGJIN Climate Change Conference in Liverpool.


17th March: Adam Charnock helps us to start our new Blog.


15th March 2007: Ashton Hayes project features in Science Week at The University of Chester, 7.30pm.


12th March: Ashton Hayes Parish Council meeting. Parish Rooms 8pm.


Monday 12th March 2007: Ashton Hayes featured by AFP on Yahoo News and in Quebec and on the French Batiweb - thanks Elodie for the story and to Alison Ambrose for spotting them! Just noticed Kerala's and China's interest!


Weds 7th March 2007: Roy Alexander to show DVD and speak at Bosley VIllage Climate Change Meeting.


Tuesday 6th March: Meeting with EA Technology in Capenhurst to discuss the micro-grid.




FEELING THE HEAT: After the anniversary event people were invited to the Golden Lion public bar to view infra red images of houses that illustrated areas of heat loss from our buildings. Thanks to Channel 4 TV for helping with this. The images stimulated much discussion (programme to be broadcast on 5th March).

5th March 2007: Channel 4 Dispatches TV programme, with George Monbiot, feature Ashton Hayes in a 50-minute programme (around 8pm we think!).


2 March 2007: New Zealand TV visits Ashton Hayes


1 March 2007: Agence France Press visits Ashton Hayes. Thanks to Elodie for a great day.


28 February 2007: Unique visitors to this website now exceed 100 per day.


28 February 2007: Ashton Hayes presents to Hyndburn Energy Forum, Accrington, Lancashire. (01254 380675)


23 February: Parish Council awayday to discuss plans for achieving 'Quality' status.


Weds 21st February 2007: Dr Alexander gave a lecture about the project and showed the DVD, Our Footprint: Our Journey, as part of the Perspectives on Sustainable Development series at the University of Chester.


21 February 2007: Ashton Hayes invited to speak to students at the Imperial College 'Ethical Careers' seminar in London.


18th February 2007: Steve Holland produces low resolution version of our new video that you can watch online. Click to view the video (broadband recommended).


18th February 2007: Tracey Todhunter reports that tickets for our April 14th conference are selling out fast. Please apply soon if you wish to come!


18th February 2007: Team members erect our new 2m x 1.5m notice board on Church Road. This will enable us to display A0 maps of village carbon neutral acivities provided by RSK's mapping facilities. Thanks to Colin Todhunter for making such a wonderful job of this and to the Dobson family for allowing us to attach the board to Village Farm barns.


15th February 2007: Windsave turbine erected on Primary School. The unit will provide power to the school but also serve as a demonstration unit for the entire community.


14th February 2007: Ashton Hayes participates in seminar on Personal Carbon Allowances at the Royal Society of Arts (RSA) in The Strand, London. Thanks to the UK Environmental Research Institute for inviting us. We have volunteered to trial PCAs at some time in the future.


12th February: Ashton Hayes Parish Council meeting. Monthly report on project activity.



7th February 2007: Ashton Hayes and Chester CRed team invited to House of Commons (Portcullis House), Westminster to celebrate CRed's growing success in the UK, USA and China. Thanks to Marcus Armes and Trevor Davis for inviting us.


5th February 2007: Reports from Berlin and Frankfurt newspapers visit Ashton Hayes on a fact finding mission.


1 Feburary 2007: Granada Reports, reports on the project.


31st January 2007: Interview with 'Dealing with Climate Change - Whose Responsibility Is It?' for The BBC World Service's Turkish Section - thanks to broadcaster Ebru Dogan.



31st January: Ashton Hayes presented evidence at Cred/House of Commons Event, organised by DEFRA at the University of East Anglia. 'Climate Challenge - Citizen's Agenda' . Event is recorded on video and in Hansard.


29th January 2007: Ashton Hayes presents at Cheshire County Council's Climate Change Scrutiny Meeting at the meeting room at the Verdin exchange, Winsford. 1300 to 1715.


27th January: The Scotsman newspaper refers to Ashton Hayes.


26th January 2007: Hugo Deynem interviewed by Chris Evans on BBC Radio at 6.20pm.


26th January 2007: Dr Roy Alexander interviewed by Radio Lancashire about the project.



26th January 2007: Garry Charnock interviewed by World Service radio 'Europe Today'.


26th January 2007: The Guardian runs a 1/3 page story on our project, page 15. Thanks to David Ward for coming to the village.


25th January 2007: George Monbiot congratulates Ashton Hayes on its community efforts.



25th January 2007: Barry Cooney at the Golden Lion reports that he's now saving over £200 a month from his energy bills by taking simple actions associated with switching off kitchen equipment and beer coolers, computers, cigarette machines and changing light bulbs. He is now looking into waste composting.


25th January 2007: Thanks to Mark Lynas for mentioning us in New Statesman


25th January 2007: WORLD PREMIER OF OUR PROJECT FILM (Our footprint, our journey), plus Anniversary Celebrations at the Primary School, Church Road. Around 300 people turn out on another cold night - what support! Thanks to everone for coming and the Brownies for the popcorn, WI for doing the drinks and all those who brought stands and participated. As usual, a huge thank you to the schoolteachers and children. The English bubbly and popcorn went down a treat!. Contact us if you'd like a copy of the film.



The LAST STRAW: AndyFosterArchitects presented this idea for insulating our old 'mobile' classrooms at the primary school. Adding straw bale insulation (orange blocks) to the walls and a well insulated pitched roof would prevent a lot of energy escaping.



24th January 2007: Talk to the Weaverham Trust (local organisation) about the project by Dr Roy Alexander.


24th January 2007: Legat Owen make a further donation towards the project. Many thanks to Peter Johnston and his Partners.


24th January 2007: Colin Todhunter completes contruction of large public display board for our village maps.


24th January 2007: Eurotree Services make a £100 donation to the project and Haworth's Fruit farm provide bottles of local apple juice for the anniversary event.


23rd January 2007: Golden Lion reviews energy use and carries out survey. Media visits and meeting with NEA team who plan to host a 'conference delegate' visit to Ashton Hayes on 18th September 2007. This will involve a pub lunch and tour of our carbon neutral activities.


23 January 2007: RSK Group plc donates a further £500 towards the project. Many thanks to Dr. Alan Ryder and all the team. Also to Craig Scott at RSK for doing the computer plotting.







22nd January 2007: New sponsor, Earthborne Paints surveys Parish Rooms to prepare for sponsored paint with their non-VOC emitting paints. One small step for climate change!


22nd January 2007: OrganicFair in Chester have offered us free soft drinks for Thursday night's event and the Brownies offer to make and serve popcorn. The WI team volunteer to serve the champagne!


21st January 2007: New sponsor Earthborne Paints surveys Parish Rooms before carrying ou free re-painting with non VOC paints. More soon.


21st January 2007: Sponsor Solartwin of Chester offers £100 and support at anniversary event on 25th January.


20st January 2007: Ashton Hayes agrees to talk to their neighbours in the Barrow Tree Planting group on Friday 23rd April.


19th January 2007: Mark Lynas of the New Statesman agrees to talk at our Grass Roots Conference on 14th April. Thanks Mark!


18th January 2007: High winds postpone team meeting to Sunday 21st January, 8pm, Lane End Farm. The team has now extended to 27 people.


18th January 2007: Radio 5 Live interviews Garry about the project at 5pm.


18th January 2007: BBC 24 News TV crew to visit Ashton Hayes and ask people about the Government's new offsetting plans. Five live broadcasts from Garry Charnock, Hugo Deynem, Claire Lewis and Barry Cooney and Tracey Todhunter and Michelle Deynem. Sadly the hig winds cut off village power and we were unable to cover the school event. Thanks to Nick, Debbie and David and the rest of the team for spending a day with us in tough weather conditions.


15 January 2007: Ashton Hayes shares experiences with Bollington Carbon Neutral Group in Bollington, Cheshire. Church House Inn, 7.30pm.


12 January 2007: BBC Liverpool features Ashton Hayes on its website.


11 January 2007: Chester Chronicle carries two-page feature on the project to announce our anniversary celebrations, promote CRed Chester and offer energy saving tips.


1 January 2007: Project team now includes 25 people in 5 groups of 5.


Press and community communications team

Technology team

Carbon clinics team

Carbon sinks team

Conferences and exhibitions team






December 2006 Update


13th December 2006: Ashton Hayes presents to the Earby Parish Council Going Carbon Neutral Project, Lancashire. 7.30pm.


9th December 2006: First carbon clinic at the Ash-Worth Timebank Coffee morning on Saturday morning.


7th December 2006: Ashton Hayes Participates in recording of BBC Radio 4 programme on Climate Change at the Royal Society of Arts, The Strand, London. 7-9pm.


6th December 2006: Ashton Hayes joins Sustainable Cheshire Forum, Chester Town Hall, morning event.


30th November 2006: Tree Planting at Ashton Hayes Primary School.


25th November 2006, Chester Climate Change Awareness Raising Event with CRed.We are collaborating with a number of agencies to stage an awareness raising event on Climate Change to take place probably in the Quaker Meeting House, Frodsham Street.



A lively debate at Riverside! See



25th November 2006: Ashton Hayes project to be presented to Eco-Congregation Sterling, Scotland. Going Carbon Neutral: Launch Event - an initiative facilitated by Stirling Methodist Church in association with Stirling Council and the Community Carbon Reduction Programme. 10am - 4pm , Council Chamber, Viewforth, Stirling.


18th November 2006: Rosie & Dave Humphries give feedback on their solar thermal panel.


18th November 2006: John Pearson of Cheshire County Council and Ged Edwards of De Montfort University carry out first Eco-survey of the Golden Lion pub with Barry Cooney, Landlord.


17th November 2006: Local Area Committee gives the Ashton Hayes Parish Council/Carbon Neutral project £350 out of the second round of the 2006/7 budget. This is to be used to provide project notice board. Thanks to Anne Lancaster for the support.


17th November 2006: Garry Charnock presents the latest project news to a Chester Labour Party Meeting in Vicarage Road, Chester. It is made clear that the project has no political affiliations.


16th November 2006: Meeting with the Ash-Worth Timebank to discuss collaaboration on our carbon clinics programme.


13th November 2006: Parish Council Monthly report on the project. We learn that Cheshire Highways has allocated funding to construct a 400m long safe footpath to the nearby Mouldworth Railway station. So we can now use rail travel to go into Chester and towards Manchester. A great success for the project!


10th November 2006: Ashton Hayes project visits Philippa Goodrich at BBC TV Centre in Shepherd's Bush, London, to discuss particpation in BBC Radio 4 programme with Ed Sturton of The Today Programme.


9th November 2006: Team meeting to form 5 new project groups. The expanded project team has now reached 20 volunteers and we have formed 5 key action groups. Carbon Clinics, Conferences and Exhibitions, Technology and Design, Carbon Sinks and Press and Community Communications. We also agree the 'Big Rules' of the project. Click here for these details.


27th October 2006: Heather, Neil and Greta Barrett from Castlemaine, Australia, pay a 4-day visit to Ashton Hayes to share experiences and cement our twinning relationships between the community, school, pub and football team. They make a video on our community effort and plan to send a video back to Ashton Hayes from Castlemaine.


Neil, Heather and Greta Barrett take a stroll on the Peckforton Hills during their

visit to Ashton Hayes.


26th October 2006, UEA CRed Annual Report, Norwich. Garry Charnock thanks the CRed team for their support for the Ashton Hayes project and congratulates the team on its record of achievement.


24th October 2006: Video interview with VC of the University of Chester as part of our documentary film for DEFRA - postponed.


17th October 2006: Meeting with MD of EA technologies to discuss their offer of carbon offsetting support for Ashton Hayes. Here is the statement from Robert Davis, MD expressing support for us and a plan to investigate a renewables micro-grid for the village. See the end of our film.


12th October 2006: Chester Launches CRed system to give all its 160000 residents a personal pathway to carbon neutrality. Ashton Hayes has been a driving force behind this event, linking the UEA CRed team and finding main sponsor RSK ENSR.



September activity report click here


26th September 2006: Talk to Westminster Park Residents Forum (Evening): Details to come.


21 September 2006: Ashton Hayes Going Carbon Neutral project to be presented to the community of Burton at 7.30pm, Gladstone Village Hall, Burton.


12-13th September 2006: Ashton Hayes project features in LGA Event at the Roodee Racecourse.


11th September 2006: Ashton Hayes project features in 'Good Practice Exhibition, Queens Hotel, Chester. 10am - 3pm.


August activity report: This is a quiet month with many of the team on holiday but we are busy working with Chester City Council on our 12th October launch the Cred 'personal pathway to reducing carbon dioxide emissions'. Every citizen in Chester is to be given pesonal access to this system, developed by the University of East Anglia carbon reduction team, and we believe that Chester will be the first city in the world to do this. We are planning a series of launch activities around the city and a mini-conference. The UK Charity Carplus, that promotes repsonsible car use is offering support on the day.


We are also pleased to report that we have many new offers of help and our Ashton Hayes Carbon Neutral team is now growing fast. We are assigning responsibilities and two people have offered to help organise our 'grass roots' climate change conference that we plan to host in Spring 2007 as part of our DEFRA grant objectives. Other communities with similar objectives to ours will be invited to share experiences in creating awareness of climate change issues.


BBC TV is also coming to see us on 12th September to discuss possible opportunities to film some of the village carbon neutral activities. By the time they film we hope the school will have the demonstration wind turbine.


We are also talking with our 'ecocongregation' friends in Scotland about how we might share ideas and we are in discussion with Matlock about how we can help them embark on a carbon neutral scheme.


Our next major presentation is on 11th September at the Chester 'Good Practice Event' that draws together community projects in and around Cheshire (Queens Hotel, City Road). We are also particpating in the LGA event at the racecourse on 13th September.


July 31st 2006: Latest project update


July 2006: The University of Chester completes the baseline survey for the village and sends out individual assessments for every house that completed the forms. They also make a wonderful poster analysing our current baseline and feedback from residents. Here is an example of the feedback form.


27th June 2006: Ashton Hayes invited to speak at the public meeting of the Stratford Climate Action Group, Stratford Upon Avon


26th June 2006: Tattenhall Parish Council (near Chester) is considering going down the carbon neutral route and wants to hear the views of Ashton Hayes and asks for permissions to use our project logo (we are flattered!).


21st June 2006: The community of Brilley, near Hay on Wye hears about our project and shares ideas. 7.30pm.


20 June 2006: Ashton Hayes and the University of Chester present our project at the Cheshire Show, Tatton.


Mid-June 2006: Student survey completed: After 5 weeks of hard labour our student team managed to interview residents in around 170 houses, and some village businesses. It seems like we put approximately 5000 t/yr of carbon dioxide into the air. This is a preliminary figure as the University is studying the data over summer to give us a more definite baseline figure.



Public opinion on proposed renewable energy projects at the Primary School was recorded at this event and the vast majority of residents are in favour of the solar thermal panels and Windsave Turbine. The County Council now plans to proceed with planning applications. The village is eagerly awaiting these demonstration units and several families have expressed a keen interest in installing similar units on their houses.


Thanks to County Planning Officer, Hannah Parish (above), for organising the school event - and to the school.


21st May 2006: Brownies, leaders and parents carry out tree count in specified areas of Ashton Hayes Parish.



20th May 2006: Forest Row Eco-Footprint meeting, East Sussex. Talk on Ashton Hayes GCN project to a welcoming and lively community that is considering its own 'Going Carbon Neutral' project. Thanks to Rose, Kate and Richard for their hospitality. Great attendance including a 3 hour visit by Peter Ainsworth, Shadow Minister for the Environment (below) who learned more about Ashton Hayes and told us that his party was keenly interested in climate change issues.


MP Peter Ainsworth listens to concerns about climate change in Forest Row, East Sussex and about our actions in Ashton Hayes


16th May 2006: Ashton Hayes project is presented at a workshop the National Home Energy Conference in Blackpool. Download the presentation


15th May 2006: Helen Gibbs of The University of Chester to advise Ashton Brownies on tree counting/monitoring techniques.


12th May 2006: Ashton Hayes project gets a mention in the Daily Express and Chester & Ellesmere Port Chronicle and students are photographed for the NW Enquirer newspaper.


10th May 2006: Link provided to our twin community in Castlemaine Australia. See their website


9th May 2006: Talk to Cheshire Tree Wardens, Winsford. 7pm. Very interesting meeting with positive outcomes as other regions of Cheshire are interested in our approach.


8th May 2006: Parish Council meeting 8pm Votes to twin with Castlemaine in Australia.


5th May 2006: Meeting with EA Technologies at Capenhurst to discuss the possibility of making Ashton Hayes a technology testbed for renewables technology. Rob Ford and John Person present along with others from EA and Cheshire County Council. See end of this film.


3 May 2006: Students arrive in the village to prepare for survey


7th April 2006: Ashton Hayes features in Cheshire Life magazine (4 pages)


6th April 2006: Ashton Hayes project to be presented in Huxley Hall at the Area Committee meeting 6.30pm


5th April 2006: Ashton Hayes is given a mention in Australia by Terry White the Executive Officer of the Central Victorian Greenhouse Alliance mentioned us on ABC Central Victorian radio this morning. He talked of the fantastic work and leadership that Ashton Hayes is doing and about the visit Professor Steven Hall made to Chester.


30th March 2006: Ashton Hayes project to be presented at the North West regional conference of the Energy Saving Trust, Blackpool.


29th March 2006: Ashton Hayes project presented at Cheshire County Council Forum


28th March 2006: Katie and Laura Nunnerley of Ashton Hayes Primary School feature in the Guardian's G2 supplement today -- another one for the cuttings book! Well done girls.

Katie has since had a 3 page reply from Edward Clark of DEFRA's National Climate Change Policy Division.


23rd March 2006: Ashton Hayes Primary School to be surveyed for wind turbine.


22nd March 2006: Meeting with Chester City Management Team: Project Coordinator and Technical Advisor meet with members of the Chester Executive Management to discuss ways of sharing the experiences in Ashton with other communities in and around Chester.


21st March 2006: Presentation to Lib Dems 'Serious Social' at the Olive Tree pub, Kelsall. Open meeting and CRed team from UEA Norwich will also be presenting.



Professor Steve Hall (left) meets with Dr Roy Alexander (Centre) and Garry Charnock at The University of Chester to share ideas about project methodology.

20th March 2006: Professor Steve Hall from Ballarat University near Melbourne Australia visits The University of Chester to share ideas on going carbon neutral. See also our contact in Castlemaine, about a 1 hour drive from Ballarat (according to Heather Barratt of Castlemaine)


17th March 2006: Bibi vanderzee from Guardian G2 contacts the project with a view to interviewing schoolchildren about the project.


17th March: Ashton Hayes agrees a summer meeting (during the Hay literature festival) with Ruth Morgan and other members of the community of Brilley, near Hay on Wye, to share ideas on carbon neutrality and how we might work together.


16th March 2006: Heather Baratt of the community of Castlemaine near Melbourne, Australia is also trying to go carbon neutral and contacts Ashton Hayes in the hope that we can 'twin' with their community. We are hope our project partners will agree to this very soon. Good luck Heather and team at the Mount Alexander Group.


15th March 2006: Local business sponsor agrees to provide part funding for CRed project in Chester. Funds are now being sought from local authorities.


10th March 2006: Visit to Energy Saving Trust in Winsford to discuss ways of introducing community-based renewable energy into Ashton Hayes.


9th March 2006: John Pearson (right) Sustainability Manager for Cheshire County Council meet with Headmaster Rob Ford (2nd from left) and the Solartwin survey team (Dave Houston, left, Simon Sharp, 2nd from Left) at Ashton Hayes Primary School to discuss installation of solar thermal panels. Solartwin also visited some residents to carry out no-obligation surveys for possible solar thermal panel installations.


8th March 2006: Ashton Hayes Going Carbon Neutral Project is presented to Chester In Partnership at Chester Town Hall. This open meeting offers a forum for people and community representatives to learn more about projects in the Chester area.


7th March 2006: Ashton Hayes (and Woking) get a mention on - the world's most popular green lifestyle website. Thanks for the support!


6th March 2006: Meeting with Peter Bulmer at Cheshire County Council: We are delighted that Cheshire County Council is providing full backing for the project as is examining ways in which they can help Ashton Hayes achieve its carbon neutral ambition. Peter described the areas in which the County Council could help. The first step is to see if they are able to build a new and safe footpath to Mouldsworth Station. More on this soon.


Peter Bulmer runs through the aspects of our project that Cheshire County Council may be able to support.


3rd March 2006: Brownies receive £300 'Carbon Neutral Project' donation from Mr D. Searle of Ashton Hayes Estate and will use this to fund essential equipment costs.


2 March 2006: BBC World Service 'Warm World' radio coverage, first 6 minutes and last 4 minutes. The transmission times are 1006, 1506 and 2006 on World Service (and 0206 Fri on Radio 4) - best picked up on digital radio or tv. You can also hear the programme on demand for a week from Thursday morning.


Millennium Point was the venue for the meeting.

1st March 2006: CAfE Conference - 'Switching on your community'

The fourth national CAfE conference took place on 1st March 2006 at Thinktank in Birmingham. The Going Carbon Neutral Project featured in the programme. Read full report



20 February 2006: Local solar panel manufacturer, Solartwin of 50 Watergate St, Chester, has offered to put a demonstration solar panel in Ashton Hayes, provide information and install panels and at reduced costs to residents. Three people have so far expressed an interest. We need to move quickly to obtain the £400 grant towards the panels (Ends 31st march) and if you'd like to know more about the offer please contact us.We are also currently making an easy-to-read document that explains the planning considerations in using renewables and we are meeting the conservation officers at Chester City Council in the week of 27th Feb.

Here is an independent comment from a user: "We had a Solartwin panel installed on our house 18 months ago and we have certainly noticed a difference in the bills during the summer. Also we are in a conservation area in Holt in North Wales and had no problem with the placing of our panel. I can thoroughly recommend Solartwin

for the installation and the panels." says Professor Cynthia Burek, The University of Chester."


20 February 2006: Sweden follows Ashton Hayes inititative, according to Mark Lynas blog! "Some more good news: taking its cue no doubt from the Cheshire village of Ashton Hayes, Sweden has announced plans to become the first carbon-neutral country." Thanks Mark!


20 February 2006: Dr. Jacqui Malpas describes the reasons for and the plans for carrying out our Lanscape Character Assessment.


18 February 2006: Following the presentation at Ashton Hayes Primary School, Laura & Katie Nunnerley wrote to the Prime Minister and suggested he encouraged other villages to follow suit - read their letters (another) and his reply. Well done girls!


10 February 2006: EST announces lucky winners of HEC prize draw: Note as follows from Eric Whitworth...

"We've had a fantastic response to the mail out, over a hundred by the 31st and still coming in.

The prize winners have been notified and we will be organising a presentation and photoshoot next week. The winners are:-

1st prize - Mr D W Bowker, 5 Peel Crescent, Ashton Hayes, Chester

2nd prize - Mr J Critchley, 17 Peel Hall Lane, Ashton Hayes


8 February 2006: Project Coordinator, Garry Charnock, addresses Chester City Council Environmental Forum.


8 February 2006: RSK ENSR produce 150 copies of digital maps of village for primary school children to take home and modify.


8 February 2006: Ashton Hayes Going Carbon Neutral Project and sponsors apply for Mersey Basin Campaign Northwest Business Environment Award, 2006.


5 February 2006: Steve Holland of tes ltd produces launch video with voiceover and clips from TV coverage. (YouTube link)


3 February 2006: Interview with Dee 106.3 radio about the launch and follow up actions (Monday 6th broadcast)


3 February 2006: Coverage of launch and future actions in Chester Chronicle Newspaper (Tom Sieber)


2 February 2006: E-mail notice on progress goes out to launch attendees who provided their email addresses.


29th January 2006: Independent feedback on the launch by roving reporter, Jane Kinsley.


27th January 2006: Project features in BBC Radio 4 Changing Places, 3.00-3.30pm

New series. Dylan Winter looks forward to a zero-waste society.


26th January 2006: Launch features on BBC NW Tonight, Granada 'Party People' and Dee Radio 106.3.


26th January 2006: Project launch at Ashton Hayes Primary School, 7.30pm. Exit questionnaire enables us to collect names of volunteers.



22nd January 2006: Village road signs fixed into place by Garry & Alex (Garry in photo)


18th January 2006: Visit to see energy crops in Eccleshall. Hugo Deynem in photo


11-13 January 2006: Invitation to the launch to all village residents


03/04 January 2006: Project and University of Chester representatives visit to CRed, UEA, Norwich for baseline survey advice and request for support.



Helen Gibbs (University of Chester Coordinator for the Ashton Hayes Going Carbon Neutral Project) discusses the latest CRed software for monitoring carbon emissions reductions with Matt Taylor (Center) and Marcus Armes (right) of the CRed team at the University of East Anglia in Norwich. We are hoping to use the CRed software and advice on the village carbon dioxide monitoring and baseline computations. The software is already being used by over 4000 people/organisations across Eastern England.




20 December 2005: Project website launched


19 December 2005: School notice to parents


20 November 2005: Letter to village residents on meeting and tree counting


18 November 2005 :Community sets out to become England’s first carbon neutral village (PRESS RELEASE)


16 November: Local business leaders contacted for help and financial support. £3600 donated in 48 hours.


14 November 2005: Garry Charnock presentation to Ashton Hayes Parish Council meeting. Read speech


October 2005: Research on measurement concepts (Roy) and development of communications and speech for Parish Council (Garry)


Late September 2005:Pub quiz where idea shared with Roy Alexander and friends.


August 2005: Garry formulates GCN concept while walking on the Shetland Isles


May/June 2005: Greenpeace debate at the Hay Festival inspires action: The Greenpeace debate on climate change featured Dir David King and Lord Oxburgh (Shell) and was held on a very windy day which was appropriate for the subject matter! It was this debate that inspired Garry Charnock to take positive action in Ashton Hayes.