A good weekend in Southend:)

We had an interesting and productive two days over the weekend of the 24th/25th March. We spent Saturday afternoon at the Mendip Wildlife Gardens Wonderful Family Gathering at Dunster Avenue on the northern fringes of Southend and all day Sunday at the Southend Community Wellbeing & Vegan Festival.

The event on Saturday was a community festival with an interesting vibe held on a council estate on the fringes of Southend up by the A127 and right under the flight path to the airport. An area that has more than its fair share of problems but also has a pretty good sense of community as well which in these troubled times, is essential in building neighbourhood resilience. It gave us (South Essex Working Class Action) some ideas on persuading residents on one of the estates we work on in Basildon to think about putting on something similar with us helping to facilitate it. It was also interesting to see what various groups of volunteers have done with the Mendip Wildlife Garden – a lovely little oasis right in the heart of the estate.

On the Sunday we had an Essex Social Strategic Alliance stall at the vegan festival with a table loaded with leaflets and papers. We shifted two thirds of the print run of the current edition of The Estuary Alternative (we kept a third back for distribution at suitable venues across the region). Not only that we had a fair few interesting conversations and made some potentially useful contacts in the process. What was good about this event is that unlike a lot of vegan fairs which can be very lifestyle orientated, there were a healthy number of campaign stalls present to help put some politics and context into veganism.

Lastly, but by no means least, a big thank you to Chay Godfree, Dean Ward and the teams of volunteers out on both days for organising and running both events. Both events in their own way provided an opportunity for the community to get together – on the Saturday to enjoy themselves and on the Sunday for an insight into veganism and also a chance for local activists to do some serious networking.

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The Estuary Alternative is back from the printer

The second print edition of The Estuary Alternative paper has just come back from our friends at Oxford GreenPrint. We produced the paper specifically for distribution at these two events where we will be having a presence…

Mendip Wildlife Gardens Wonderful Family Gathering
Saturday 24th March from 10:00–19:00
Mendip Wildlife Garden, 42 Dunster Avenue, SS0 0HN – https://www.facebook.com/events/391405211330131/

Southend Community Wellbeing & Vegan Festival
Sunday 25th March from 10:00-17:00
49 Alexandra Street, Southend-on-Sea – https://www.facebook.com/events/150970792218276

A small number of papers will be available from the Freedom bookshop in Aldgate, London from Saturday 17th March onwards. As Freedom very kindly published much of the content of the paper: Seeds Beneath the Snow: Thoughts on local organisinghttps://freedomnews.org.uk/seeds-beneath-the-snow-thoughts-on-local-organising/ it would be rude to not let them have some papers for distribution! If there are any papers left after the weekend of the 24th/25th March, they’ll be available on the shelf at The Railway in Clifftown Road, Southend-on-Sea and possibly, from a few other venues if there are a sufficient number left.

If you can’t make it into Southend-on-Sea but would like to see the paper, it’s available online as a downloadable PDF: https://www.dropbox.com/s/ujlgie04y5u7jo3/The_Estuary_Alternative_No2.pdf?dl=0

A little reminder from Chay and Dean about the 24th and 25th March

We don’t normally use The Stirrer to promote events like this (we set up The Estuary Alternative to do that). However, as a) this blog gets considerably more traffic and b) these two events on the weekend of 24th/25th March could see a major step forward in promoting positive alternatives in southern Essex, we’re using all the means at our disposal to promote these events. Please feel free to share widely:)

The 24th and 25th of March will see two events on two consecutive days that will offer people / communities some real alternatives to how we live now. Both of these events are exactly the kind of action we want to promote at The Estuary Alternative. There are still slots for stallholders but you need to act sooner rather than later because they’re going fast. If you’re involved in any kind of progressive, alternative, community focused grassroots project in and around Southend, this is where you need to be on the weekend of 24th / 25th March.

STALL HOLDERS PLEASE CONTACT EITHER:
DEAN WARD: 07964984667 | deanward1981@hotmail.co.uk
CHAY GODFREE: 07960650341 | Chay.godfree@cultiv8uk.org

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