Meeting Notes from Tuesday 12th October

Green Consumer Update

1. Plastic Recycling

We discussed the success of the Terracycle scheme and the fact that supermarkets now collect soft plastics – including the items we currently collect for Terracycle.

ACTION: Sonia agreed to look into what happens to the plastic that the supermarkets collect. She did and here’s the answer: most of it gets sent to Poland! Details in this blog:

Co-op recycle their waste in the UK but our local Co-op doesn’t yet collect plastics. We’ll keep an eye on it.

2. Hurst Rethink Stall at Christmas Event – 5th December

We all agreed to have a stall at the event on Sunday 5th Dec, 12-6pm. It’s being organised by Gill Blackburn and the traders. Amanda suggested an eco gifts tombola which is a great idea. Anna suggested we offer a making activity such as making your own body scrub. Another great idea, please save up your jam jars! We will also sell eco gifts, wrapping and decorations.

ACTION: We will need some volunteers to man the stall and also to source items to sell. Please let us know if you can help

3. Sustainable Fashion Events

Charlotte is leading a team looking at setting up sustainable fashion and household goods events in Hurst to kick start a more circular economy. These include clothes swaps, jumble sales and a jumble trail – like a garage sale where people put out unwanted items on the road on an agreed day.

Kirstin mentioned that a team at BHASVIC are setting up clothes swaps.

ACTION: Kirstin to contact the BHASVIC team and see if we can work together.

ACTION: If anyone wants to help with these initiatives, please let Charlotte know.

4. Farmers Market – Local Food

We discussed the desire to set up a local food market in Hurst. Apparently there was one around 15 yrs ago, set up around the launch of the Hurst Festival.

The team agreed Sunday is probably the best day and the Trinity Rd Car Park / Village Centre the best location. MSDC have previously turned down the Sussex Peasant from trading here due to competition issues with the High St so this may need to be overcome.

Charlotte has a meeting this week with the New Inn as they want to set up a market too – she will feed back details when she has it and next steps will emerge after this.

In the meantime, we’re working on a local food directory to go on the website, also a Christmas Gifts Directory update.

ACTION: If anyone wants to get involved in this project, please contact Charlotte

ii) Community

Charlotte updated the team on the launch of a fifth focus area for us; Community. She has connected with Prue Heron who ran the COVID-19 neighbourhood volunteers group who is keen to resurrect this group for community cohesion events.

Ideas for this included a regular welcome event for new Hurst Residents (perhaps run in conjunction with the PC?) a Hurst Advent Calendar where houses get a number and light up with decorations on their day (thanks James!), a Christmas Carole and Raise a Glass evening for local streets, games days, a summer and winter gathering for neighbours

ACTION: Charlotte is meeting with Prue Heron and Anna Smithy to discuss ideas. Please let Charlotte know if you’d like to be involved in the new community group.

iii) Green Transport Update

Lucy updated everyone on how the Bike Swarm went – very well! Those who attended enjoyed it immensely; Bridget Hamilton and team did an amazing job.

If we do it again, we will publicise it more in Hassocks (and Hurst!) and get organisations like the Sussex Nomads, Proper Cycling etc.. involved.

Cycle Route update

The Parish Council are liaising with WSCC on the proposed cycle routes from Hurst to Hassocks. The WSCC proposed route through Hurst Meadows is a concern as some of the old Hornbeam trees may need removing.

Joy Dennis, our WSCC Councillor is also head of the Transport Committee so we encourage members to write to her with any concerns.

We are in constant contact with the PC on this subject.  Better news is that the route North from Hurst to Burgess Hill is less controversial and more likely to go ahead quicker.

Bike Parking

A lack of bike parking in the village was raised as a concern. Following this, we did an audit of what’s available and were surprised how many points there are! We will update the website and social media with these but briefly they are: outside the Village Centre, in Trinity Road Car Park, near the Charity Shop, outside Charlotte Grace, outside Crossways, at South Avenue Rec next to the toilets.  It was agreed we should have some near deli/bakers for shoppers.

ACTION: Lucy to follow up with PC on provision of more bike parking.

EV Car Charging Points

We’ve had an update from MSDC that the delayed EV charging points are due to be installed into Trinity Road and Brown Twins Road car parks in Jan 2022.  We’ll keep an eye on this!

iv) Biodiversity & Natural Environment Update

Road Verges

Lucy and George updated us on the WSCC Community Road Verge pilot scheme that took place this year. We will continue next year with the 8 verges nominated. We can’t expand the scheme until public liability issues are resolved – George is working on this.

No Mow May

This went so well last year that we will repeat again next year but bigger and better! We will precede it with a campaign on wildlife friendly gardening. The team will start planning this early next year.

Tree Planting

There will be a focus nationally on tree planting next year as part of the Queen’s jubilee and we’d love to head a tree planting campaign – perhaps with the aim of planting a tree for every resident in Hurst.  This will need to be planned carefully and local landowners & community groups contacted e.g schools, Washbrooks, clubs who have fields, Court Bushes was mentioned. Hurst Society also have a small tree planting scheme. Also local businesses who have land. We need to tie all of this together and perhaps add a counter to the website.

George mentioned a Plantlife event, Right Tree, Right Place event – it’s taking place on 22nd October online – details here

George also mentioned we can use Google Earth to identify where there are gaps in hedgerows and trees and contact landowners to encourage hedgerow or tree planting.

MSDC may be able to offer us some free land registry searches to identify landowners in Hurst!

This is a project in itself and will need further consideration at next month’s Biodiversity team meeting.

ACTION: Amanda to do more investigation into tree planting. She would love some help – if anyone wants to help with the project, please contact Lucy.

Community Compost

We discussed this and agreed the best place was the allotments.

ACTION: Lucy or one of the biodiversity team to follow up with Allotment society. John is the main contact.

We also noted that if WSCC roll out food waste collections in 2022, then the need for community compost will be diminished. We hope this scheme won’t be further delayed.

v) Roles to Fill

At the moment, we have two very active teams for Green Consumer and Biodiversity but need more help to cover certain areas of our work in order to achieve our big plans! The following roles were highlighted:

Fundraising lead- someone to lead our fundraising efforts. There are lots of opportunities for grants and as yet we’ve not been successful in getting any money.

Green Energy group lead – this would mainly be researching how community energy groups operate and looking at how we could set one up here. Also researching how we help homeowners transition to green energy.

Schools Liaison lead – there’s so much work we could be doing with schools, working with their eco clubs but it needs someone dedicated to it.

Marketing – Charlotte is doing all of this at the moment and it’s taking up a lot of time. She so could do with some help e.g with scheduling social media, blogging, writing articles, ideas on how we spread the word further in the village about who we are and what we do.

Press Officer – we are missing opportunities for coverage in local press.

ACTION: If you can lend a hand in any of the above areas, please contact Even just an hour a week would be great and probably all many of these roles require. Thanks to Sonia who has offered to lead the Green Energy group – if you’d like to join her, please let us know. Thanks also to Kirstin and Kate S who have offered to be the schools liaison leads.

vi) Events and Meetings

We all agreed how lovely and engaging it was to meet in person! We agreed that we will hold group events every 2-3 months and combine it with a talk  on sustainable living. Suggestions for talks include Home Insulation / How to Retrofit your home, Eco Cleaning.

ACTION: If anyone has suggestions for speakers, please let Lucy know.

Next month, each of teams will meet, probably online. We’ll publish details soon.

Contact details:



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