Strategic Alliance

Strategic Alliance

South West London Environment Network (SWLEN) and the Environment Trust (ET) are entering a strategic alliance.

Climate Strike 2019

Employees of the South West London Environment Network will be joining the Climate Strike on Friday 20th September in solidarity with millions of others worldwide to call for climate justice and an end to fossil fuel dependence. As a charity that exists to conserve and protect the environment through engaging and empowering grassroots communities to […]

A Food Waste...

Hi! My name is Sophie and I’m a 31 year old Registered Veterinary Nurse and mama to an amazing 18 month old little boy and I also volunteer as a Food Waste Hero for Olio one day a week. I collect surplus food that would otherwise go to waste from one of the local Cavan […]

From Our Summer...

Hi, all! My name is Caroline and this summer I joined the SWLEN team as the Communications Intern! I am a rising fourth year student at the University of Virginia. Coincidentally it is not too far from Richmond Virginia, in the States, so it was fitting that I worked in the London Borough of Richmond.   […]

Richmond’s greatest event...

The primary objectives of Get On Board 2019 event, organised by Be Richmond, were to highlight the problems with plastic pollution in our waterways while creating a great community event involving residents, businesses, workers and charities both on the water and on the towpath. SWLEN organised the litter pick, representing local charities including The Poppy […]

Get on Board...

Welcome to Get on Board 2019, which this year takes place on Friday 21 June 2019. The main aim of ‘Get on Board’ is to highlight the problem of plastic pollution in our waterways. But it’s also about building on the success of 2018 and creating a great community event involving residents, businesses, workers and […]

New Local Biodiversity...

Last week started off rather grim for nature lovers: The UN global assessment report on biodiversity and ecosystem services revealed that 1 million species are at risk of extinction. Largely as a result of human activity, coral reefs and rainforests are destroyed at accelerated rates. But one needn’t look afar to find our life support […]

Trustees Sought for...

Ealing Council announced last year it was establishing a parks foundation which will work collaboratively alongside the Council in the future management and maintenance of Ealing’s parks and open spaces. It will operate as a charitable organisation, complete with input from residents, friend’s groups and a board of trustees. The Ealing Parks Foundation is now […]

Thames Bridge Consultation:...

SWLEN recently responded to Richmond Council’s publication of a report on possible locations for a new pedestrian bridge over the Thames. Location 13 (Radnor Gardens to Ham Lands)  Radnor Gardens is a well-used local park bordering the Thames in Strawberry Hill and is designated as Metropolitan Open Land (MOL). Ham Lands is a wonderful nature […]

Metropolitan Open Land...

SWLEN believes that the proposed development represents inappropriate development on Metropolitan Open Land (MOL), and is contrary to policies relating to the Green Belt/MOL at national, London and local levels. The ‘very special circumstances’ which might justify such development do not appear to be present in relation to this development.  The National Planning Policy Framework does not list […]

A novel way...

A Twickenham based theatre director has launched a crowdfunding campaign to bring a new children’s musical, with an important message about climate change, to Hampton Hill Theatre. Stephen Leslie was inspired to create this production after hearing about Ellie and Starlight a story by a local writer that explains climate change in a heart-warming way […]

Marble Hill Planning Response

Response to planning application 18/2977/FUL – Marble Hill by Richmond Biodiversity Partnership Introduction SWLEN has co-ordinated the response of the Richmond Biodiversity Partnership (RBP) to English Heritage’s latest planning application in relation to proposed work at Marble Hill House and Park.  A full copy of RBP’s observations is below.  They centre around the works proposed to […]

2 Minute Litter...

Press Release: New litter-pick scheme to help stem the tide of plastic entering the Thames Be Richmond and South West London Environment Network are making it easier for Richmond residents and visitors to keep the towpath tidy and reduce the amount of plastic entering the Thames. People can now quickly and easily get hold of […]

A Peoples Manifesto...

By Elliot Newton As we approach Remembrance Day, we enter a period of national reflection as we pay our respects to the many brave men and women who have fallen, sacrificing themselves in the hope of a better future. This is a time to not only remember the huge sacrifices made but also discourage such […]

1000 plastic cups...

Barnes Tidy Towpath Group is formed by locals who are passionate about the environment, the Thames towpath and waterways and organise regular litter picking sessions along the towpath between Hammersmith and Barnes Bridges, which anyone is welcome to join whenever possible. They also work with the local Council, Thames21, the PLA, the BCA and local shops to […]

Community Learning. Guided...

Would you like to learn traditional conservation skills from experts? Join a programme of free activities on sites in Crane Park, Richmond working in Partnership with The Conservation Volunteers.  For further information about the project please email Friends of the River Crane Environment:  info@force.org.uk Meeting at The Embankment, Twickenham, TW1 3DU at the garage which is almost […]

Two Ladies Fight...

Christine Weller and Clare Box are doing their bit to help reduce local food waste by opening a pop-up café in East Twickenham that intercepts surplus food. They are part of https://therealjunkfoodproject.org a growing movement started by a former Leeds chef who wanted to do something to reduce the UK’s vast quantities of food waste. […]

Why is there...

Why is there so much doubt surrounding climate change? By Max Leighton The Paradox There is a befuddling paradox surrounding what we believe about climate change. There is a huge body of scientific analysis that has been amassing over the past few decades, which overwhelmingly points the finger at us. This stream of evidence is continuously […]

Smart Communities

Leaving a light on in an empty room, putting the heating on in winter, or simply going to the bathroom can lead to a number of expenses that waste electricity and money. Smart Communities is a team of people concerned about the waste of energy and works to ensure that we get to be more […]

Smart Communities promoting...

Our Smart Communities team took part in an event in South West London on Sunday the 2nd of November, at the SERA (Sunray and Egmont Residents Association). People from the residents association and local authorities were discussing about infrastructures, planning, services and safety of the neighbourhood and private house maintenance. On this occasion Smart communities set […]

Solar Panel Electricity Systems

Produce cheap and clean electricity from sunlight and GET PAID Electricity prices have increased by roughly 7% every year for more than a decade. The demand for electricity has also grown substantially over the past few years. The residential sector is largely responsible for this increase. Solar panel systems can be designed so that a household’s electricity demand is wholly […]

The Jam Yesterday...

On Saturday, the Jam Yesterday Jam Tomorrow projects’ Open Day took place in Marble Hill Park. Twickenham. Although not quite the sunny day hoped for, the grey sky didn’t deter people away. The volunteers had worked hard in preparing the garden for it. The open day was part of capital growth’s Edible Open Gardens Day. […]

The Tidal Stretch...

In December 2012 SWLEN helped local not-for-profit organisation Ham Hydro Community Interest Company to organise The Tidal Stretch a sponsored walk from the Thames Barrier to Teddington Lock.  Ham Hydro team members and friends walked the 31 miles from the Thames Barrier to Teddington Lock on Saturday 1stDecember. SWLEN staff and volunteers acted as stewards. SWLEN set […]

Tour of Beverly...

Richmond Biodiversity Partnership (RBP) Tour of the Beverly Brook Restoration Project with Julia Balfour, Friday 4th December 2015.   Representatives from 10 different environmental organisations came on this tour specially organised for the RBP, including Historic Royal Palaces, The Conservation Volunteers, Friends of the River Crane Environment, Friends of Barnes Common, the Environment Trust, Glendale’s Nature’s […]

Tour of the...

SWLEN regularly organises tours and visit of green spaces in Richmond Borough, especially for other Friends Groups and members of the Richmond Biodiversity Partnership, so we learn first hand how a Friends Group runs, and we can share ideas, practices, ways of doing and problems.   Friends of the River Crane Environment – FORCE – formed […]

Richmond Fairtrade Fair

Not all trade is fair. Farmers and workers who produce what is marketed do not always receive an appropriate share of the benefits of trade. FAIRTRADE is an independent organisation that seeks to change that. It is an alternative to conventional trade that is based on the agreement between producers and consumers, where farmers in […]

Trip to Tower...

On Friday 18th March 2016, SWLEN organised a tour to Tower Hamlets Cemetery Park in Mile End, East London for Friends groups from Richmond Borough. The trip was an initiative to see the work of another very successful and well established group managing a large green space in East London with similar circumstances to many […]

Restarting Tooting: A...

Yesterday I was witness to an inspiring event, a Restart Project drop-in event organised by Transition Town Tooting. If you haven’t come across Restart Project, they are a charity ‘taking local action to prevent electronic waste through hands-on, learning events where we help people fix their own electronics – and help others to do the […]

Make your business circular!

‘Take, make, dispose’, is the mode of production that most products and businesses operate under in our economy. The inputs to the majority of the things we sell and consume worldwide are designed to be used only once, and more often than not, the product we then buy is only used once as well. This […]

Richmond upon Thames...

Climate Change is firmly embedded in the list of issues facing our planet in the 21st Century. The term ‘climate change’ refers to any fluctuation in climate, whether as a result of human or natural causes. Natural factors include the changes in the Earth’s orbit, tilt of the Earth’s axis, volcanism or solar activity to […]

Nesta event: Digital...

#Nesta #RethinkingParks  Digital Technology in Parks and Open Spaces: Busting Myths and Exploring Opportunities An account of the symposium event on July 30th at Nesta, London by SWLEN’s Community Project Manager, Sue Palmer. “The potential of digital technology for parks, open spaces and heritage sites is hotly debated. In the right circumstances digital technology can help […]

Much More Than...

On a mild December morning I joined the ranks of the Friends of Palewell Common Fields and Nature’s Gym. The task agreed was to maintain the Common’s mud paths suffering from the winter rain. We wheeled wheelbarrows along the waterlogged paths, pouring wood chippings on to the boggy patches. A production line of happy locals, […]

Notes on the...

One of our volunteers travelled to Iceland this month to represent the Youth Arctic Coalition! Here is her account: The Arctic Fox is the only land mammal native to Iceland. History tells us that the intrepid Arctic fox walked across the frozen sea to arrive in Iceland at the end of the last ice age. […]

Friends of Barnes...

Even though a drizzly Tuesday morning was forecasted this didn’t discourage a group of 15, from the Richmond Biodiversity Partnership, from heading to Barnes in Richmond upon Thames for a walking tour of the common. The tour was led by Mike Hildesley (Friends of Barnes Common (FoBC) Chairman) and organised by the Richmond Biodiversity Partnership/SWLEN for […]

Conservationists: The Next Generation!

 On a cloudy November afternoon, a group of keen conservationists arrived at a small oasis of wildlife in the middle of suburban Richmond. This group have been constructing wattle fences (or shelterbelts!) in different areas throughout the site, based on where they think they will provide the most benefit. In an inspiring mix of education […]

Bat Species Action...

Bats are surrounding us in the media hype at this particular time of year as Halloween approaches. The public sees them as symbols of fear and it may be this incorrect portrayal of bats, which may add to the vulnerability of these spectacular mammals. In fact, unfortunately, bat numbers are declining globally and on our […]

A Delve into...

Why does Climate Change not feel dangerous? You may be thinking that climate change does feel dangerous, but in reality, it is taking a long time to stir us into adequate action. We are starting to make strives forward and momentum is building, but we have a long way to go before humanity is sustainable. Logically, when we think about it, we realise […]

A Day Out...

My first foray into the world of volunteering was to attend a practical conservation workshop led by Simon Hawkins of TCV (The Conservation Volunteers) Richmond branch. This mid week ‘get to together’ at Crane Park/ Kneller Gardens at Mereway Nature Park (TW2 6RP) would involve various tasks in redoing the meadow area. Feeling excited but […]

A Day In...

Barnes Common is a quiet area of grassland, trees and forests, historically known as ‘The Waste’ and used as a common ground for hundreds of years. In 1992 it was legally designated as a Local Nature Reserve on the grounds of vital importance to local people, visitors and its biodiversity, and as a result of […]