Whitley Bay Big Local – Developing an EcoHub
Whitley Bay Big Local is a Community led charity run by Chief Executive, David Carnaffan. David is very interested in how our actions locally can affect the global environment and has made it his mission to create an eco-hub in Whitley Bay.
With the help of the Community Ownership Fund, North of Tyne Combined Authority and Local Trust, the charity has secured funding to ‘make the dream of developing a low carbon eco-hub a reality.
Although there’s a long way to go in retrofitting the former job centre building on Whitley Road, with many renewable and green heating sources not readily available or affordable, by simply upgrading their gas boiler to a more efficient one they have already halved their gas usage.
“We have also started to make changes in our behaviours and practices. We have installed recycling points in the building. We are using a local supplier for coffee, with zero waste (other than compostable coffee grounds) and bought compostable tea bags. We have our milk delivered in returnable glass bottles. We have bought reusable cleaning bottles and bulk refills. We have changed our procurement practices to reduce use of online retailers in favour of local suppliers. What’s interesting is that most of these changes weren’t difficult and have made life easier. We no longer have to bring milk in or remember to pick up coffee. They just arrive. Small changes, but positive nonetheless.”
Whitley Bay Big Local have two main ambitions for the centre. To reduce their environmental impact and to inform and inspire the local community about climate change.
With the help of funding from National Lottery Community Fund, the charities next project is to develop an Environmental Action Plan for Whitley Bay. “This will include consideration for how we develop the building, what activities we can provide both in the centre and around Whitley Bay’.
To keep up to date with how plans progress for the Whitely Bay Big Local you can follow David’s blog here.
If you’d be interested in consulting on the Environmental Action Plan, get in touch with NEECCo and we can connect you.