How to Try Organic on a Budget

How to Try Organic on a Budget

To celebrate Organic September, we want to share some tips for eating more organically on a budget.

The month highlights the hard work that goes into growing whilst working with nature and encourages us to think about how our food and clothing can be more in tune with the planet.

Although organic food can be more expensive, staples like rice, pasta and pulses often only differ in price by a small amount and buying directly from farmers through box schemes can help too.

Sometimes organic isn’t always available either. So here’s a list of tips for eating more consciously on a budget and upping your organic content:

🌱 Shop local & refillable– when possible buy your fruit and veg loose. There are multiple options in PZ where you can take your own containers to fill up on things like spices, pasta etc. while supporting your local independent businesses, including The Weigh Inn, The Granary and Archie Browns.

Check out Refill PZ for all the local options available and a map with their locations.

🌱 Eat seasonally– it’s easier on your wallet and reduces your carbon footprint as food doesn’t have to be shipped as far.

🌱 Try growing your own– whether on a windowsill or a worktop, on an allotment or in raised beds, growing your own herbs & vegetables at home is a great place to start, and can help you save money.

🌱 Don’t be afraid of the freezer– keep a lookout for reduced organic items – freezing them as soon as you get home will prolong their shelf life massively and reduce the amount thrown into Cornwall’s incinerator.

🌱 Sign up for a veg box scheme – they’re a great way to try organic. They offer wide varieties of seasonal fruit and veg with many schemes offering introductory discounts.

Check out some local options:

Alsia Cross

Trenow Fields

Growing Links

Nancelvearne Market Garden

Cornish Food Box

National providers Riverford

🌱 Bear in mind supermarket organics can be cheaper – but are more likely to be wrapped in plastic, which is full of chemicals and poses a massive waste issue.

More information and tips can be found on the Soil Association website.

Coping with the Energy Price Hikes

It’s pretty worrying right now. Next month gas and electricity prices will soar to an average of £2,500 annually. All off the back of that price hike in April … and with the threat of more to come.

It’s a 26% increase, at a time of rising petrol prices, food bills and inflation as a whole.

By rethinking how we use energy in our homes we can reduce some of the impact of increasing energy bills. It won’t negate it all, but it will help. It will also reduce the amount of carbon we emit from our homes, and our impact on the planet. There is also a host of support out there which we can access.

There’s no easy fix to this, but there are some ways we can try and reduce the burden.

Which is what this all comes back to really. The fossil fuel industry and its stranglehold on consumers and the planet. The glaring evidence that we could do with adopting a new approach to energy; how we create it and how we use it.

In April we brought together expert advice with tips on lowering energy use and switching to a greener supplier (if you can – we know it’s tricky right now), and how we can support each other. We’ve updated it to take into account the latest news … starting with how we can support each other:

Supporting our local community:

With energy prices increasing, millions of people around the UK will struggle to find the money for light, cooking and heating. Here’s a few ways to support yourself or others in the community who may be struggling with rising costs:

  • Have a cuppa with a neighbour to check how they’re doing. If they’re worried about rising energy costs you signpost them to the support they need (links below)
  • Support calls in the community for Warm Spaces. Can your street come up with something to support each other? Some UK councils like Gateshead and Bristol are already doing this. If you want to see it in Penzance – contact your local councillor
  • Check out support available from the government here
  • Get help if you can’t afford bills here

You could also:

  • pass on this blog and its links and tips
  • share Cornwall Council’s Winter Wellbeing page with tonnes of links and support
  • check out Cornwall’s Community Energy Plus (or a similar local service). Its freephone line 0800 954 1956 can advise on reducing energy bills, grants to replace boiler and night storage heater replacements,
  • contact Citizens Advice (and pass on their contact details), which has information on grants and benefits to help pay energy bills,
  • run a community get together where people can share tips and information, while having an open conversation about rising energy use and bills.

If you’re in a position to, you could donate to the Community Energy Plus’s Cold Homes Relief Fund which supports vulnerable households in Cornwall experiencing fuel poverty through measures like providing emergency electric and gas key meter top-ups.

Quick tips on reducing bills (and carbon):

To reduce the impact of soaring bills – and how our energy use impacts planet – we can use less energy at home. Look through this list and see how many you could start right now. These tips and suggested savings to be made are from the Energy Saving Trust (savings are based on the average household).

Change habits: 

These are free to do, but you’ll need to change your habits to make the energy and emissions savings. You may not be able to make all these changes, but each one you can adds up.

  • Turn off appliances, don’t leave them on standby mode: 

Save around £55 a year by turning your appliances off at the plug, not leaving them on standby. Most appliances can be switched off without messing with their settings, but check their manual if you’re unsure.

  • Turn lights off when not using them:

When you leave a room, turn the lights off. This simple trick could save you £20 a year on your energy bills.

  • Wash your clothes at 30 degrees, and do one fewer wash per week:

Changing how you do your laundry could save £28 on your annual energy bill. Wash your clothes on a 30 degree cycle, and try doing one fewer wash a week.

  • Don’t use the tumble dryer:

Find another way to dry your clothes if you can, like using clothes airers indoors or a washing line outside in the warmer weather. This could save £55 a year.

  • Swap one bath a week for a shower, and take shorter showers:

Swapping one bath a week with a short shower could save you £11 annually. Keeping your shower time to under four minutes will also save around £65 a year on energy bills.

  • Don’t overfill the kettle and fit a flow regulator on your tap:

Only filling the kettle with the water you need could save £11 a year on your energy bill. Make more savings by fitting an aerator, or flow regulator, onto your tap. It’s a small device, easily fitting onto your tap that reduces water use by mixing air into the flow. Installing one could save you £22 a year.

  • Use the dishwasher one less time each week:

Make sure your dishwasher is full when you use it to use less water. Doing so could mean you need to run the dishwasher one less time each week, saving £14 on energy bills (and reducing your water bill too).

Getting a bit more complicated:

Tariff changes, technical fixes or things to buy:

We asked local energy experts AMR Consulting for their tips for changing tariffs, technical changes you could make, or things to buy to use your energy smarter – reducing both your bills and your carbon footprint.

  • Move to a fixed deal, you have more security and are guaranteed no price rises until the end of that term – allowing you to budget more easily. (Want a green energy tariff? Make sure you don’t fall for greenwash.)
  • Money Saving Expert has info on how to best manage suppliers and deals. You can get it here
  • Get a smart meter.  Not only will you get billed accurately, but they are a great way of monitoring your real time energy usage, showing you which appliances use the most energy, allowing you to adjust to reduce your energy usage.
  • Install solar PV and battery storage. This option can be quite pricey and do not expect a return for at least 5-7 years. If you own your home it may be worth considering the long-term benefit to your budget and your carbon footprint.

AMR Consulting specialises in business energy. If you need advice on making your business more energy-efficient and reducing your carbon emissions get in touch with Hayley.

More ideas:

The average home spends over half of its fuel bill on heating and hot water, making this a key area where money and carbon footprint savings can be made.

  • Reduce heat loss at home: draught-proofing and insulation:

Work out where heat is escaping from your home (usually around windows, doors and cracks in floors) and block these gaps. To do this, you can either use DIY methods like draft-proofing tape and draft excluders or you may want to get a professional in to help.

By insulating your home you can also reduce how much you’re spending on heating bills. Find out about cavity wall insulation, solid wall insulation, roof insulation and floor insulation with the Energy Saving Trust’s guide.

  • Insulate your hot water cylinder:

Adding an insulation jacket to your hot water cylinder could save you £35 a year on energy costs. This will make sure your water stays hot, meaning you’re not wasting energy reheating it.

  • Turn your thermostat down:

This is a simple way to cut your energy use. For each degree you dial your thermostat down, you’ll save around £65 a year – says MSE.

  • Adjust your boiler settings:

MoneySavingExpert has a guide on how to change your boiler and radiator settings to use less energy.

  • Switch to a different form of heating:

If you have money to invest now to save to reduce both your energy running costs and carbon emissions, you could look at switching to a heat pump or biomass boiler.

Support Renewables: Switch to a green tariff:

Switching is tricky right now. If you can, beware of ‘greenwash’. Don’t get duped by energy companies.

You can switch to a company offering 100% renewable energy. However, as Good Energy writes, it’s hard to figure out which tariffs are actually green. Some energy providers are mis-selling tariffs as green – when they’re really powered by dirty fossil fuels – due to a loophole in regulation. Read Good Energy’s guide to avoid falling for greenwash and misleading claims, making sure you really are supporting the growth of renewable energy.

Golowan Festival: 5 ways we reduced its plastic impact

💚 Together we made *real* progress on reducing single-use plastic at Golowan Festival’s Mazey Weekend. There was a marked difference in plastic pollution this year. 🥤

A MASSIVE thanks to everyone who refilled, reduced and responsibly got rid of rubbish. Here’s five ways we reduced the much-loved Penzance festival’s plastic impact…

1. Amazing Plastic Free Penzance volunteers did regular rubbish picks, stopping anything getting in the sea.

2. Venues across town offered refill cups… leading to visibly less rubbish in these patches.

3. Many traders followed the Plastic Free Events charter and didn’t provide single use plastic.

4. There were no balloon sellers. Given the gusty wind, that will have made a massive difference to plastic pollution.

5. There were no goldfish in plastic bags at the fair. Phew. Poor things. These ‘prizes’ are bad for plastic pollution, and the poor animals.

Can you help us make an even bigger difference? Your donations help fuel our community projects, making a real difference in our town. If you’re able to donate, please chip in.

Thank you all – not least the Golowan Festival organisers and volunteers who are so supportive and work hard alongside us to help reduce impact. Onwards. Let’s do even better in 2023! 

Be planet friendly this mega Bank Holiday

There’s celebration in the air as we get ready for the four-day bank holiday to mark the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee …

When it comes to big celebrations and extra holiday, it’s easy to drop some of the things we do day-to-day to cut impact. We can see it as a ‘one off’ or want to cut ourselves some slack. Which is fair enough! From buying last-minute food in single-use plastic, to running around in the car, or leaving waste by the bins for someone else to clear up; it’s an easy trap every one of us can fall into.

We’re creating a community that puts people and planet first. To do that we need to start taking our good intentions into the one-off situations too. So here are a few ways to keep up momentum …

Reduce, Reuse, Rethink

Refuse, reuse, rethink is a good mantra to take out with us. Reducing what we use over the weekend means there’s less waste to get rid of.

Taking a refillable water bottle, coffee cup or festival cup along with us will cut waste, and chemicals. Plastic isn’t just a waste problem, you see. It’s a huge health problem; for us, the soil and the ocean.  

We can also pledge to avoid as much single use wrap as possible when buying party food or food at events. Bring a plate is a winner for events you may be organising, taking a refill tiffin tin or tub is perfect for festivals.

And when it’s all done? Grab any rubbish that’s left and take it home where you can recycle or reuse as much as possible. Bins in town and at the beach will be chocca – guaranteed. If a more of us take our own rubbish away, it helps.

Getting Around

Woman cycles in a summer dress

If you’re heading further afield to celebrate or need to travel around, how can you leave the car at home? For one … you won’t need to be the designated driver! Bus fares have just been significantly reduced in Cornwall to encourage people onto public transport. Timetables are also improving so they match train and other bus services.

If it’s a shorter distance to go (we go on a 5K radius at the mo’ at SPZ HQ) could you bike it? Cycling round PZ is getting easier with more bike lanes and low or slow traffic zones plus a whole network of bike shelters, thanks to the Healthy Streets initiative.

It may be that you have mates heading to the same place; give them a call and see if you can lift-share? Check out Pasty Connection, the local lift share app too (they actually give out free pasties to festival goers who use the service.)

Food for Thought

Food and drink are central themes for extended bank holidays. In addition to looking at reducing supermarket packaging, we can look at buying locally produced ingredients and treats. If we’ve got time and inclination, making some dishes at home ourselves. It’s a money saver as well as a waste saver.

Food waste is a biggie here though. Gauging exactly how much food is needed is tricky, but it’s something to bear in mind to try and reduce leftovers. If there are leftovers, there are some great local organisations looking to redistribute food in the community to help combat food poverty. Check out Growing Links and the Community Larder at Redwing plus other groups on our Signposting page.

How can our excess help even up access to food locally?

Community …

People around a long dinner table with reusable glasses

… it’s what it’s all about. Time with each other and in our communities, whatever they look like to us. At Sustainable PZ we are working to connect and create a stronger community, which is inclusive, open and accessible to all. Working on a shared mission to try and do things in a better and kinder way to each other, and the place we live.

Community events are a great way to do this. By choosing to do things a different way to reduce our own contribution to pollution and waste, we can influence others around us. Tell your mates what you’re doing to cut impact, instigate lift shares or a cycle-in, take a few festival cups in your bag for friends who’ve forgotten theirs.

From small acorns and all that … we can influence more than we think by our own small actions and decisions.

Have a great time.

To keep up with our latest news and updates, follow us on social media for more (Sustainable Penzance on Facebook and Instagramn).

The Penzance guide to Easter holidays

This month there’s two bank holidays to enjoy and schools are on Easter break, so we’ve put together a list of events in and around Penzance to enjoy this month for both kids and adults.

Whether you’re looking to get closer to nature, or want to keep the little ones busy while exploring our local area, there’s something for everyone — and, best of all, you can do it all with sustainability in mind.

Family-friendly events:

Penwith Circle Family Walk
7 April: Penwith Circle is hosting a series of walks around our stunning local landscapes this spring.The first walk is for all the family, and explores the ancient landscape around the Mên-an-Tol. Archaeological expert Laura Ratcliffe-Warren guides this walk. Find out more.

Easter egg hunts at Trengwainton Garden, National Trust
10-24 April: Make your way along the trail, finding nature-inspired activities for the whole family. Follow the trail around the Trengwainton Garden…with a Rainforest Alliance chocolate egg waiting at the end. Find out more.

Sewage pollution protest on Fistral Beach, Newquay
23 April: Join people all across Cornwall coming together to send a message to South West Water: it must end sewage pollution. It’s part of Surfers Against Sewage’s 12 protests across the UK. Each targeting one local water company. Find out more.

Events for adults:


Dynamic Dunescapes: Introduction to Botany
6 April: Learn more about our local plants with this free botany training from the Cornwall Wildlife Trust. Learn how to tell some of the major plant families from one another at Gwithian’s sand dunes. Find out more.

Last chance: join our community workshop
9 April: We’re hosting a workshop for community groups to strengthen and support all our work and spaces are now limited. It’s your last chance to grab a space for our community workshop. Sign up for your space now

Save the date: Beach clean on Sunday 8th May 
It’s time for a spring (beach) clean! Let’s get out on the beach and pick up plastic and other rubbish for our Million Mile Clean. Join our beach clean email list and we’ll keep you informed on this and other local beach cleans.

You may also be interested in…

Join our business list
We’ve thrilled to get almost 10k National Lottery funding to support local businesses. Our resilience programme will help businesses adapt and cut their environmental impact through resources, workshops and events. Join our business list to be first to know about the programme.

Want your local events in and around Penzance (that bring people closer to nature and their local community?) send us an email.



How to reduce your bills & carbon footprint

With gas and electricity prices soaring by around £700 annually from the start of April, many of us are thinking about how to cut our bills and beat the price hikes. It’s a daunting time, but there could be double gains to be made… 

By rethinking how we use energy in our homes (stopping using so much of it and using it smartly) we can not only reduce the impact of increasing energy bills, but also reduce our carbon footprint and impact on the planet.

We’ve brought together expert advice at this tough time for many, with tips on lowering your energy use and therefore the price hike, switching to a greener supplier, and making sure the local community is supported.

Quick tips on reducing your bills and carbon footprint:

To reduce our energy bills and impact on the planet, we need to use less energy at home. Look through this list and check how many you can start using right away to make savings. These tips and suggested savings to be made are from the Energy Saving Trust (savings are based on the average household).

Change your habits: 

These are free to do, but you’ll need to change your habits to make the energy and emissions savings. You may not be able to make all these changes, but each one you can adds up.

  • Turn off appliances, don’t leave them on standby mode: 

Save around £55 a year by turning your appliances off at the plug, not leaving them on standby. Most appliances can be switched off without messing with their settings, but check their manual if you’re unsure.

  • Turn lights off when not using them:

When you leave a room, turn the lights off. This simple trick could save you £20 a year on your energy bills.

  • Wash your clothes at 30 degrees, and do one fewer wash per week:

Changing how you do your laundry could save £28 on your annual energy bill. Wash your clothes on a 30 degree cycle, and try doing one fewer wash a week.

  • Don’t use the tumble dryer:

Find another way to dry your clothes if you can, like using clothes airers indoors or a washing line outside in the warmer weather. This could save £55 a year.

  • Swap one bath a week for a shower, and take shorter showers:

Swapping one bath a week with a short shower could save you £11 annually. Keeping your shower time to under four minutes will also save around £65 a year on energy bills.

  • Don’t overfill the kettle and fit a flow regulator on your tap:

Only filling the kettle with the water you need could save £11 a year on your energy bill. Make more savings by fitting an aerator, or flow regulator, onto your tap. It’s a small device, easily fitting onto your tap that reduces water use by mixing air into the flow. Installing one could save you £22 a year.

  • Use the dishwasher one less time each week:

Make sure your dishwasher is full when you use it to use less water. Doing so could mean you need to run the dishwasher one less time each week, saving £14 on energy bills (and reducing your water bill too).

Getting a bit more complicated:

Tariff changes, technical fixes or things to buy:

We asked local energy experts AMR Consulting for their tips for changing tariffs, technical changes you could make, or things to buy to use your energy smarter – reducing both your bills and your carbon footprint.

  • Move to a fixed deal, you have more security and are guaranteed no price rises until the end of that term – allowing you to budget more easily. (Want a green energy tariff? Make sure you don’t fall for greenwash.)
  • Get a smart meter.  Not only will you get billed accurately, but they are a great way of monitoring your real time energy usage, showing you which appliances use the most energy, allowing you to adjust to reduce your energy usage.
  • Install solar PV and battery storage. This option can be quite pricey and do not expect a return for at least 5-7 years. If you own your home it may be worth considering the long-term benefit to your budget and your carbon footprint.

AMR Consulting specialises in business energy. If you need advice on making your business more energy-efficient and reducing your carbon emissions get in touch with Hayley.

More ideas:

The average home spends over half of its fuel bill on heating and hot water, making this a key area where money and carbon footprint savings can be made.

  • Reduce heat loss at home: draught-proofing and insulation:

Work out where heat is escaping from your home (usually around windows, doors and cracks in floors) and block these gaps. To do this, you can either use DIY methods like draft-proofing tape and draft excluders or you may want to get a professional in to help.

By insulating your home you can also reduce how much you’re spending on heating bills. Find out about cavity wall insulation, solid wall insulation, roof insulation and floor insulation with the Energy Saving Trust’s guide.

  • Insulate your hot water cylinder:

Adding an insulation jacket to your hot water cylinder could save you £35 a year on energy costs. This will make sure your water stays hot, meaning you’re not wasting energy reheating it.

  • Turn your thermostat down:

This is a simple way to cut your energy use. For each degree you dial your thermostat down, you’ll save around £65 a year – says MSE.

  • Adjust your boiler settings:

MoneySavingExpert has a guide on how to change your boiler and radiator settings to use less energy.

  • Switch to a different form of heating:

If you have money to invest now to save to reduce both your energy running costs and carbon emissions, you could look at switching to a heat pump or biomass boiler.

Support renewables: switch to a green tariff:

Beware of ‘greenwash’: don’t get duped by energy companies.

Want to reduce the environmental impact of your energy use? You can switch to a company offering 100% renewable energy. However, as Good Energy writes, it’s hard to figure out which tariffs are actually green. Some energy providers are mis-selling tariffs as green – when they’re really powered by dirty fossil fuels – due to a loophole in regulation. Read Good Energy’s guide to avoid falling for greenwash and misleading claims, making sure you really are supporting the growth of renewable energy.

Supporting your local community:

With energy prices increasing, millions of people around the UK will struggle to find the money for light, cooking and heating. Here’s a few ways to support others in your community, like pensioners and people on low incomes, who may be struggling with rising costs:

  • Have a cuppa with a neighbour to check how they’re doing. If they’re worried about rising energy costs you signpost them to the support they need (ideas below). 

As CSE says: “Some households may not know about these sources of support or feel anxious about contacting them; being encouraged or even just reminded to reach out can really help.”

You could others people in your community by:

  • passing on our tips,
  • directing them to Cornwall’s Community Energy Plus (or a similar local service). Its freephone line 0800 954 1956 can advise on reducing energy bills, grants to replace boiler and night storage heater replacements,
  • advising them to contact Citizens Advice (and pass on their contact details), which has information on grants and benefits to help pay energy bills,
  • running a community get together where people can share tips and information, while having an open conversation about rising energy bills.

If you’re in a position to, you could donate to the Community Energy Plus’s Cold Homes Relief Fund which supports vulnerable households in Cornwall experiencing fuel poverty through measures like providing emergency electric and gas key meter top-ups.

IWD: Celebrating Penzance’s female changemakers

This International Women’s Day we’re celebrating a few of the amazing women and female-led organisations making positive change happen here in Penzance, Cornwall.

Fresh produce like carrots and potatoes in boxes

Whole Again Communities (WAC):
Community led = community fed. Whole Again Communities (WAC) supports people to cook affordable and healthy meals at home from scratch, as well as using cooking to improve people’s wellbeing and sense of belonging.

One of its projects is a weekly repair cafe which not only brings the community together around food, it also helps volunteers improve their practical and personal skills – which can eventually help them find work.

“We work with people to cook to improve their health, wellbeing and confidence,” Lizzie Sullivan CEO says. “Volunteers are involved at every stage – choosing recipes, cooking, taking online orders and managing the collection system.”

Mousehole community garden shows children getting involved with gardening

Solomon Browne Memorial Hall:
Solomon Browne Memorial Hall is a central point for the community to come together to take part in events, classes and workshops in the historic fishing village of Mousehole.

One of the Memorial Hall’s exciting projects is creating a new community garden, in partnership with Mousehole School.

Tamsin Harvey from the Hall said: “We have plans to create a forest school playgroup here, run workshops and outdoor learning sessions, and to enable members of the community to use the garden improving health and wellbeing. The school are also using this garden to enhance the children’s learning and life skills.”

Community garden shown with plants growing

Growing Links:
This brilliant forward-thinking organisation uses locally-grown food to make healthy, eco-friendly food available to all, while reducing food waste. It keeps hundreds of homeless and vulnerable people and low-income families fed each day through initiatives like Food Store and the Street Food Project.

Growing Links’ director Lynne Coakley Dyer told Cornwall Live about how the volunteer-led Street Food Project kept vulnerable people fed during the pandemic, when Cornwall saw a surge in food poverty.

The organisation also runs a community garden and allotment, training and workshops, and a veg bag scheme (selling local, organic and seasonal food).

Councillors Jan Power (l)
and Thalia Marrington (r).

Female local councillors:
Sustainable Penzance works with decision makers and stakeholders to get people and planet top of the agenda. We need decision makers like local politicians to stand up and enable a new way forward. In Penzance, female councillors are helping to create this greener future for Penzance. 

Councillor Thalia Marrington (Liberal Democrats) represents Mousehole, Newlyn and St Buryan. She’s working to help enable sustainable transport solutions in the area. Thalia is in Parliament today for International Women’s Day as part of 50:50 Parliament, a movement empowering women to stand for election, those new voices to be heard and a new way forward.

Last month, the Green Party’s Jan Power was elected as Councillor for Penzance East Ward. We look forward to working with Jan and other councillors to create a more sustainable Penzance.

Woman leans against a rock with a field behind her

The Hypatia Trust:
Taking its name from Hypatia, an ancient Alexandria scholar – the world’s leading mathematician and astronomer of her time, The Hypatia Trust is a Penzance-based charity ensuring women’s achievements are not overlooked. It researches, publishes and exhibits women’s accomplishments, ensuring they are not lost in, or even suppressed by, written history. The image shows the Trust’s Woman of the Month, astronomer, writer and researcher Carolyn Kennett. She told the Hypatia Trust about her passion for Cornwall’s nature and fascination with the night sky.

The Gardeners House is one of the Hypatia Trust’s projects looking to preserve the botanical history of the town and reconnect people to nature. 

Artist impression of the renovated community hub: stylish building with lots of windows

The Gardeners’ House:
In the heart of Penzance lies Morrab Gardens. Hiding in these beautiful public gardens is a derelict stable building. Recognising this building’s potential, the Gardener’s House charity was formed to renovate this building and transform it into a green hub for the community and all those working towards a more sustainable future for Penzance. At its centre will be an internationally important botanical archive from the Hypatia Trust and Morrab Library. 

Miki Ashton, from the project, says: “It would be really good to have that one place in town that is a hub for people to meet, connect and learn from each other.” We can’t wait for this new community hub.

Woman holding packaging at a pack swap event

Plastic Free Penzance volunteers:
Last but no means least, we wanted to give a shout out to the amazing female volunteers who give their time to our projects reducing plastic pollution in Penzance, helping us create the UK’s first plastic-free town.

Plastic Free Penzance (which hosts events like workshops and beach cleans) and its projects like Packswap Penzance and Refill Penzance could not happen without brilliant people like you supporting them. Feeling inspired? Volunteer and get involved.

Danielle (Dani) Boobyer.

5 things to look forward to in Penzance in 2022

It’s safe to say we’re in challenging times. Who’d have believed two years ago we were about to spend the next couple of years in and out of lockdowns, with schools, travel and businesses closed?

While we’re not out of the pandemic yet, we’re now entering the ‘new normal’: uncertainty remains, but Penzance continues to show resilience.

As the town bounces back, here’s some things to look forward to in Penzance this year:

Town Deal Fund

PZ Town Deal - photo of Penzance town with cars passing

Last year, it was confirmed Penzance and Newlyn would be awarded £21.5m from the Town Deal Fund to support regeneration of the local area. This year, work begins on several projects, including a more sustainable transport network and bringing key buildings back into use in the community.

Sustainable Penzance is a community representative on the board, so we’ll be seeing the business cases as they come in and how they’ll help create a thriving town that puts people and planet first. You can get the latest updates via our blog.

Healthy Streets PZ

People walking across zebra crossings on Penzance's high street

Healthy Streets PZ is already well underway. Work on making the Western Prom, followed by Alexander Road, more pedestrian-friendly starts in the next couple of months. Traffic flow and parking will also be improved in Alexander Road.

As part of Town Deal, several streetscape projects are in the pipeline as well as a cycle lane network connecting homes, schools and businesses. Work to encourage alternative modes of transport into the town is due to start and much more. Get the lowdown.

Golowan Festival

Reall large handmade lion model among crowds of people on Penzance's streets
Image: John Stedman

Our favourite festival of the year returns to Penzance’s streets this summer after a two-year hiatus. Golowan is no doubt one of Penzance’s most anticipated events, enjoyed by thousands and culminating in the biggest day of celebration – Mazey Day.

While the event took place on a much smaller scale in 2021, it’s hoped this year the festival will be back to hosting a full schedule of traditional events.

We’re excited to be working in partnership with the team again, reducing its impact through plastic-free and other environmental initiatives. We’ll need help, so look out for volunteer opportunities as we get closer to the time.

Community Collaborations

As Sustainable Penzance grows, we’re excited to host more workshops in 2022. We’ll continue to join people together through Plastic Free Penzance and we’ll also focus on bringing together organisations and individuals working on environment projects across the town, so we can be even stronger.

Three people and a child stand outside the Granary shop in penzance surrounded by free produce not wrapped in plastic

The Gardener’s House project is gathering pace, which will provide a green hub for the town amongst other fantastic community opportunities. And we will be looking for inspirational project leads to support our growth. Keep your eyes peeled and help us build towards a more sustainable future for Penzance.

Community Events

Young male wearing shortrs and a tee shirt uses a litter picker and white bag to collect plastic pollution walking along a beach next to rocks

Starting as we mean to carry on, our first event of the year is already open. The O C E A N | Exhibition for Change at the Mor Swimmy Wild Swim Hub is raising funds for plastic-free initiatives in town. It includes an Ocean Film Night on 21st January, screening one of our favourites ‘North of the Sun’. Book your spot.

Beach & street cleans start back up in February as we kickstart our contribution to Surfers Against Sewage’s Million Mile Clean. Our community cleans are more than just a plastic pick up, this year we will continue to collect evidence on the biggest polluters to support research and lobby industry and government through SAS campaigns.

Look out for us at other community events too – as we spread the message that we can create a better future for our town.

Sign up for our email newsletter to get good news stories from Penzance direct to your email box and for opportunities to get involved.

Penzance: 6 local good news stories from 2021

This year, the Penzance community came together and made amazing things happen for people and planet – from joining the refill revolution to raising awareness of rising sea levels.

Here’s a reminder of six amazing things we achieved together in 2021. (Want more stories like this? Sign up to our email newsletter.)

6 good news stories from Penzance in 2021. Aerial photo of Penzance showing jubilee pool and surrounding area.
Image: Love Penzance

Refill Penzance launched

We launched a community refill scheme in Penzance, Cornwall to help locals and visitors avoid single use plastic and support local high street businesses.

Reduced plastic at Tour of Britain

Tackling plastic waste is a tough job – especially when it comes to big events. But as the people of Penzance welcomed the Tour of Britain to town, we were pleased there were signs that things are changing.

We sent toolkits to every home in Penzance

We’re creating a wave of positive change everyone can be part of, and it starts at home. That’s why we sent a copy of our individual tool kit to every home in Penzance. It’s packed with ideas for saving energy (and pounds) and making positive change.

£21.5m Town Deal success

The town was awarded £21.5m through the Town’s Deal Fund. Sustainable Penzance sit as a community representative on the board for this vital funding pot for the future of the town – and people and planet are already featuring much higher up the pecking order than they ever have done before in decision making.

Hundreds join Global Day of Action in Penzance

Hundreds of people lined the Jubilee Pool to watch ‘Out of Sink’ raise awareness of rising sea levels and the need for global leaders to take urgent action on the climate crisis as the Global Day of Action came to Penzance, Cornwall.

Building a community hub

New and incredible projects are happening all the time in Penzance, supporting and evolving our vibrant community for generations to come – and The Gardeners’ House Project is no exception.

We’re working to bring together our community to protect the environment and create a more sustainable way of living, working and doing business. Join us and help create a thriving town which puts people and planet first!

Get more good news stories, sign up to our email newsletter Continue reading “Penzance: 6 local good news stories from 2021”

How to deal with the festive waste hangover…

Image credit: FutureEarth

The festivities are over… so, what happens now? What are we supposed to do with the waste and leftovers that come after a big celebration?

Hopefully, our tips and guides this month have helped cut the waste pile and there isn’t as much as usual – but, sometimes, avoiding it all together just isn’t that easy.

Here are some ways we can make sure we’re dealing with waste in a better way for the planet and other people:

Get creative with food

If there are a lot of food leftovers, there’s no reason for them to go straight into the bin (unless it’s posing a health hazard!).

If you’ve got veggies and grub from the dinner table, get creative and make it last. After all, who wants to be heading back out to the shops again when it’s time to chill out after the festive rush?

Try this bubble and squeak recipe for a tasty brunch, or check out this list of ideas for inspiration to make something a little bit different. From cauliflower dahl to turkey noodles, there’s something for every palette.

Give to charity

You’ll likely get some gifts that just aren’t really… you. Instead of throwing them away, think about regifting them to someone else who might appreciate them more.

If you’re not sure who to pass it on to, take the opportunity to give to charity, so someone else can make the most out of your unwanted gifts.

Replacing the old with the new

That leads us on nicely to what to do when new gifts replace old things. We may have got some lovely gifts that just make some of our old possessions, such as an old mobile phone, redundant.

Tech waste is a big problem – especially as research suggests this year’s global tech waste will weigh as much as the Great Wall of China – so stopping devices from ending up in the scrap heap is a big must.

Try selling old possessions online for a bit of post-Christmas cash, or give them away to someone in need.

There are also some great online groups, including C.R.A.P. Penwith, GOFA and Kids Clothesline where you can give away old stuff for free to help tackle the waste issue. Check out our signposting page for more

Dispose of the tree in the right way

In our Christmas tree blog, we talked about how composting your tree can actually be really bad for the environment.

Instead, keep your eyes peeled for local groups who might be looking for your unwanted trees to support their dune regeneration initiatives. Conservation group Beach Guardian is already calling for trees to be dropped at Trevisker Garden Centre to support their project at Constantine Bay.

However, it’s also worth noting that Cornwall Council will pick up Christmas trees when the festivities are over (check here for when that will be in your area) and dispose of them for you.

Get the recycling right

Unfortunately, Christmas tends to come with a lot of plastic waste – and not everything is recyclable.

Quick wins –  make sure that wrapping paper can be recycled (lots aren’t, so check first), and take any Sellotape off before popping it in the bag. Make sure any Christmas cards heading for the cardboard box aren’t covered in glitter too.

Don’t forget that, if presents are unwrapped carefully, the paper will keep for future gift-giving opportunities, and cards make great tags for next year.

There’s a handy guide on what can and can’t generally be recycled right here.

For more tips on sustainability and managing waste, keep an eye on our social channels (just click on Facebook and Instagram).