On Monday 7th November we held the first of a series of talks on greening, climate change and how positive action and a possible reframing of planning and conservation issues could improve the neighbourhood we live in. Held upstairs at The Brookmill pub, we had a strong crowd of over 50, including local councillors, members of other groups and organisations, families and many others.  It was a great atmosphere with some interesting discussions around the topics presented by the four speakers.

Our very own Prof. John Wood gave an introduction to the evening, presenting the idea of a ‘diversity of diversities’ and framing the society’s work on defining ‘conservation’.

Next up, Anna Maria Cahalene presented her journey with The Fourth Reserve to establish and safeguard the Buckthorne Cutting between New Cross and Forest Hill.  She spoke about the Ancient Woodland designation process and the importance the heritage of landscape.

Marcus Gayle, Flood Risk Manager at London Borough Lewisham talked about his work within the borough, its context as a confluence of streams and rivers, the challenges these pose and opportunities to create new pockets of biodiversity and flood resilience.

Finally Paul Middleton and Nick Blomstrand spoke briefly about the St John’s Society’s ‘grey to green’ project with Thames Water and Lewisham Council to  create the Thornville Street Rain Garden.  More on this from us soon!

The links below take you to our Youtube channel to watch recordings of the talks with the slides.  The videos can be viewed whilst staying on the SJS website if you scroll a little further.

Part 1: Introduction by Prof. John Wood, committee member for environment of the St. John’s Society.

Part 2: Anna Maria Cahalene of the Fourth Reserve Foundation, founder of Buckthorne Nature Reserve. (coming soon)

Part 3: Marcus Gayle, Flood Risk Manager, Climate Resilience Team at Lewisham Council.

Part 4: Paul Middleton, committee member for environment of the St. John’s Society.