Wetherby Eco fair fuels green ideas

Organisers of an climate awareness fair in Wetherby said they hope residents can now make a difference.

Monday, 11th October 2021, 2:50 pm
Climate change was on the agenda in Wetherby. Picture James Hardisty

In the run-up to the start of the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP 26) in Glasgow next month, an Eco Fair, part of a Going Green Weekend, highlighted the steps that can be taken to combat climate change.

One of the organisers, Sandra Ellen, said: “With COP 26 just a few weeks away, we wanted to do our bit at a local level.

“It was gratifying that a large number of people came along and showed such interest.

“Now we need the politicians and world leaders to show commitment at COP 26, followed by real action.”

A wide range of information was given in the 30 displays in the Wetherby Methodist Church and Town Hall.

Opening remarks in the Town Hall were made by Coun Connor Mulhall, Chair of the Wetherby Town Council Climate Emergency Group and Ingrid McLaughlin of the Boston Spa, Wetherby and Villages Community Green Group.

In the Methodist Church, Wetherby Ward Councillor, Norma Harrington, and Penny Stables of the Green Group, welcomed people to the event.

In addition to highlighting the dangers of climate change, the Eco Fair, also attended by the Deputy Mayor of Wetherby, Councillor Dawn Payne, provided practical advice on steps that people can take to reduce their carbon footprint and contribute to helping combat climate change.

Jointly organised by the Boston Spa, Wetherby and Villages Community Green Group, Churches Together, Wetherby Town Council and Wetherby Methodist Church, the Eco Fair also included craft activities with demonstrations showing how to use recycled materials to make eco-bricks, purses, rag rugs, corsages, bird boxes and bug hotels.

In a thought provoking presentation, underwater film maker Mark Barrow warned how littering and pollution is affecting the water in the River Wharfe.

Adrian Balcombe outlined practical and easy changes that can be made to reduce the family household carbon footprint.

Visitors also heard from Alan Bell about how climate change is affecting poorer nations and how the organisation, Tearfund, is working to help turn the tide on the climate crisis.

The Green Weekend concluded with a Wetherby Town Guided Walk, arranged by the Wetherby Civic Society and led by their Vice Chair Peter Catton.

This provided a fascinating insight of the history of town and how it has evolved over the centuries.

Event organiser, Ingrid McLaughlin of the Boston Spa, Wetherby and Villages Community Green Group said: “The historic walk, organised by the Civic Society, illustrated how the town has coped with many challenges over the centuries.

“We are now faced with the immense challenge of climate change.

“It affects us all, so it is pleasing that we had such a good turnout for the Eco Fair.

“Hopefully people will have gone away with some new ideas in how we can all play our part in helping to make a positive difference.”