Local Action

There are many different groups and organisations in Linlithgow doing their part for climate change and this section will serve to list as many as we can find to show you the diverse range of activities already going on.

Town Wide :
Nov/Dec 2008 Linlithgow Climate Challenge partnered with our local Energy Saving Scotland advice centre, and together we promoted free or discounted loft and cavity insulation. Over 300 homes signed up for the insulation. We continue to partner to offer lowest cost insulation and are currently doing a focus street campaign to help certain streets where Cavity Wall and Loft insulation is needed the most due to the age of the buildings. Home audits are available and all you need to do is contact us and we can arrange a free home visit to give impartial advice on the best options for your home.

ECO Schools :
All schools take part in various environmental activities. They organise ECO committees, who then work with a dedicated teacher to raise awareness throughout the school. Examples include : litter campaigns, saving paper, recycling bins, playground veg plots, cycling to school, switching off un-used appliances, etc. Schools can participate in the green Flag scheme, and many have already been given awards for their excellent work.
Linlithgow Bridge Primary – 3rd Green Flag
Linlithgow Primary – 1st Green Flag
Low Port Primary – 3rd Green Flag
Springfield Primary – 2nd Green Flag
St Joseph’s Primary – 1st Green Flag
Bonytoun Nursery – 1st Green Flag
Donaldson’s School – Bronze Award
Linlithgow Academy – Bronze and Silver Awards

Green Flag at Home and Energy Saving Schools :
Funded by the Scottish Governmen’s Climate Challenge Fund, these two projects saim to change behaviour using local children as Eco-Reps, and also working with local schools to drive behaviour change within all building users.

Churches :
One of the many ways in which church members respond to their belief is through a concern for the environment. The Eco Group at St Michael’s Parish Church for example, has held an educational meeting and a service on the theme of climate change; has been looking at and improving heat, power and water conservation in the church premises and improving waste management; and publishing articles and “green tips” in the Parish Newsletter “Crosswind”.

St Michael’s is one of over 180 church congregations in Scotland who have joined Eco-Congregation Scotland. Also involved locally are the congregations of Pardovan, Kingscavil and Winchburgh Church; and Torphichen Kirk. St John’s Church Linlithgow, though not part of the network, is also active in environmental issues.

Community Groups
Cittaslow – Their core vision is about slowing and enjoying life. This compliments with our environmentalist views, as we can all benefit from stepping off the consumerism roundabout. Among many projects, Cittaslow are working to reduce the number of plastic bags issued.

Linlithgow Rugby Football Club are looking at energy efficiency in their clubhouse.

Food :
The Linlithgow and District Allotment Society has formed with the task of generating a Proposal which has been put before local councillors and WLC panels, recommending that an allotment is setup. The group eagerly await a formal reply from the Council.

LinlithGROW has provided an initial three talks in February/March 2009. Growing your own fruit and veg, or buying locally produced produce is an excellent way to reduce your carbon footprint, to re-connect with the seasons and fresh tasting food. It’s healthier too and helps local businesses. LinlithGROW have a monthly newsletter service to tell you what you should be doing in your garden and when. On September the 19th 2009 we hosted a Harvest Feast in partnership with Slow Food Linlithgow and with kind permission of Bonnytoun Farm. Over 200 people were fed with local produce.

Over 200 fruit trees [mainly apples] have been discovered and are being restored and pruned back into good health.

A Series of 3 talks was held in Feb 2009 on Food/Gardening and Climate Change and we hope to follow that up with a Food Summit in early 2010. Watch this space.

Renewables :
Locally we have a business in Mill Road Industrial Estate that imports biomass pellet boilers and stoves. See : http://www.nuergy.com/
Kerr’s Farm Machinery also sells large log boilers and thermal stores.

Transport :
Linlithgow is fortunate to have excellent train, bus services, and just recently a new cycle map was unveiled at the Train Station. So cyclists can learn more about local safe-routes, bike repair shops etc. Linlithgow Bookshop also sells SPOKES maps.
Low Port Primary schools and others are encouraging walking and cycling to school instead of using the car. This is good for our health and also reduces congestion and air pollution locally.

Waste and Recycling :
Recently launched, we now have a freecycle service for Linlithgow.
See http://groups.yahoo.com/group/FreecycleLinlithgow/ .
It’s a great service which saves tonnes of material going to landfill or going through a pointless recycling process. Please sign up and use this. There’s over 300 people signed up already.

West Lothian Council use a 3 bin system [Brown=garden compostables] [Blue=P1/P2 Plastic bottles, Cans, Tetrapacks and paper] [Grey=General Waste], as well as providing a Council Recycling Centre, for clothes/bottles/cardboard/electronics/wood/metal/rubble and general household waste.
In addition there are two main Charity Shops – Cancer Research, British Red Cross, who gladly accept donations of books, clothes, shoes, games, DVD’s videos, etc.
Additional Bottle & Textile Banks are located at the rear of Sainsbury’s Car Park, and the council are trying to resolve matters with the bottle banks which were removed from behind Tesco’s. – more on this later.
Batteries can now be recycled at Tesco’s or at the Community Recycling Centre.

Businesses :.
Supermarkets are trying to encourage us to use less plastic bags.
Sainsburys – is actively campaigning for a change in European regulations to allow misshapen food to be sold.
The Copy Shop – sells 100% recycled paper and they use veg. dyes in their photocopier.
The Star and Garter have fitted water saving devices.
JMK printers are happy to help and can offer printing on 100% FSC and recycled paper.

Green Tourism Business Scheme [website]
Gold – Linlithgow Palace
Gold – Blackness Castle
Silver – Linlithgow Union Canal Society **** NEW ***
Silver – House of the Binns
Silver – Arden Country House B&B
Bronze – Belsyde House B&B

We’ve also made a little Green Map with some pointers to local green activity. [under construction].

Jamie Turner

Environment and Garden Activist at Linlithgow Climate Challenge
I focus on improving the local environment.
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