MP Pauline backs Belper group’s bid to turn town green

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Mid Derbyshire MP Pauline Latham has paid tribute to Transition Belper for their ongoing mission to make the town a more sustainable place to live.

In an open letter she praised the organisation’s hard work clearing and renovating Belper Railway Station.

The Tory MP wrote: “It has been transformed and now is a beautiful place to go, no longer covered with brambles and weeds.

Even during the last few weeks of exceptionally hot weather, they have taken bucketfuls of water in their cars because there is no outside tap available, to make sure that their work does not come to nothing because the plants have died.”

The MP admitted that she was “far too reliant” on her own car and suggested that local people “use public transport, cycle or walk for one more journey a week than we all might do normally.”

“This could save you money, time, give you exercise and reduce your carbon footprint,” she added.

The MP is also backing a Transition Belper scheme to persuade everyone in the DE56 postcode to spend an extra £5 per week on locally produced goods, thereby reducing the food miles and helping Belper’s economy. She said: “Just this small step would generate millions of pounds locally which in turn will generate more employment and more local food producers. Surely this is a win-win situation. What I like about this movement is that it doesn’t expect us to don a hair shirt but just to begin to change our habits and work together to make Belper even more successful than it already is. This kind of approach could be started in many other communities.”

Transition Belper is formed by individuals who live in Belper and are exploring how to increase the community’s ability to withstand the challenges of peak oil and climate change. They are part of an international network of communities.