Climate Emergency

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The Climate Emergency facing our world is a very real issue, but there is plenty we can do to take action to help protect our planet.

Cheshire West and Chester Council declared a Climate Emergency in the borough in 2019 and put forward its Climate Emergency Response plan, which aims to help the borough become carbon neutral by 2045.

This is a space to share ideas, stories and tips about what you are doing locally to reduce your carbon emissions and impact on the environment. Now's the time to react and play your part to make our borough carbon neutral.


The Climate Emergency facing our world is a very real issue, but there is plenty we can do to take action to help protect our planet.

Cheshire West and Chester Council declared a Climate Emergency in the borough in 2019 and put forward its Climate Emergency Response plan, which aims to help the borough become carbon neutral by 2045.

This is a space to share ideas, stories and tips about what you are doing locally to reduce your carbon emissions and impact on the environment. Now's the time to react and play your part to make our borough carbon neutral.


  • Vivo services help keep west Cheshire clean and tidy

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    Litter pickers are available at a number of different Vivo Care Choices buildings across west Cheshire so people accessing its services, as well as the local community, can all do their bit for the environment.

    Vivo, now an in-house service at Cheshire West and Chester Council, provides a range of services for people with learning disabilities and autism, along with older people.

    Litter pickers are now available at the following Vivo buildings.

    • Water Tower Gardens, Chester
    • Meadowbank Lodge, Winsford
    • Neston Community Youth Centre

    The equipment has been provided by Eco Communities as part its Plastic Free Cheshire project and all people need to do to get involved is follow these instructions.

    • Borrow the kit from one of the locations
    • Go for a walk and fill the bag
    • Recycle what you can
    • Leave your bag at the agreed location
    • Take a photo and log your findings
    • Return the equipment

    Since Vivo buildings have been acting as litter picking hubs, people accessing services have regularly been out and about in the community, doing their bit for the environment.

    It builds on the work that the Green team has done over the last couple of years, taking part in environmental projects to help develop allotments and green spaces across west Cheshire.

    Along with Vivo buildings, litter pickers can be found at the Countess of Chester Country Park, Grosvenor Park and many other locations, adding to the litter pickers that are available in libraries across the borough.

    Lynn, who uses Vivo’s services and has helped with the project, added: “When we pick the rubbish up, it’s important because it keeps the park clean and is good for the environment. It was good exercise too.”

    The Council’s Climate Emergency Response Plan encourages residents to reduce, reuse and recycle as much as possible to help the borough become carbon neutral by 2045. The Plastic Free Cheshire project is just one way of taking action to help achieve this.

    Visit: westcheshireclimateplan.co.uk to find out what action we can all take to tackle the Climate Emergency.

    For more information about Vivo and the range of services it provides, visit: vivocarechoices.co.uk.

  • Council launches Warm Welcoming Spaces Network

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    This winter, residents of all ages across the borough will be welcome to come into the Council’s libraries, to stay warm, and enjoy refreshments as part of a new Warm Welcoming Spaces initiative.
    They will receive a friendly welcome from library staff and volunteers in a warm and safe place. While at the library, residents can take part in a range of events and activities that are on offer. They can also join the library for free and take advantage of the wide range of books, eBooks, eAudiobooks and eMagazines. Libraries have Wi-Fi and public computers which can be used free of charge too.

    Cheshire West and Chester Council is planning to establish a network of Warm Welcoming Spaces that residents can access, starting with libraries across the borough from Saturday 15 October 2022. Further details about Warm Welcoming Spaces can be found on the Council's website.

    A list of libraries in the borough can be found using the Find a Library service on the Council website. Opening hours are available on the library’s webpage; with some sites being open all day and some for shorter periods. Residents can also ask their local Councillor if they’re not sure where their nearest library is.

    Working with Cheshire West Voluntary Action and Cheshire Community Action, and the wider voluntary and community sector, the Council is exploring opportunities to expand the network, and provide services to support people using the Warm Welcoming Spaces. The Council also recognises that not all residents will be able to attend a library or other community setting, and is working to ensure that residents can be safe, well and warm in their homes throughout the winter period.

    Residents who are worried about the cost of living and rise of energy bills can find useful information from the Council and other local organisations on the Council's website.


  • Energy Saving Podcast

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    Community energy coach, Mark Thompson, joins the Council's energy sector specialist to discuss some of the myths that are currently being shared about saving energy in the home.

    They discuss some of the suggestions they've heard recently that may not save you as much energy as you think, and talk about the small changes you could do to help you to reduce energy use at home and save you money.

    Find out more about other organisations that are sharing useful energy saving tips.

    If you have your own energy saving tips add them to the 'your stories' section of the Climate Emergency Inspire hub.

  • How Cheshire and Warrington will become the greenest and fairest place in the country

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    Plans have been revealed aiming to make Cheshire and Warrington the fairest and greenest place in the country.

    The Cheshire and Warrington Sustainable and Inclusive Growth Commission was set up with the aim of moving further and faster towards achieving the sub-region’s ambition of becoming the most sustainable and inclusive place in the UK, helping to address inequalities and climate change in the process.

    Recent months have seen the need for progress highlighted, with the country experiencing the impacts of climate change in recent heatwaves and the need for inclusive growth being shown through the Cost of Living Crisis.

    The commission has now made a number of ambitious recommendations around an inclusive economy, sustainable transport, sustainable land use and Net Zero in its report ‘Towards a Sustainable and Inclusive Cheshire and Warrington’.

    These include:

    1. A fair employment charter for Cheshire and Warrington
    2. The decarbonisation of dairy
    3. The full decarbonisation of all transport by 2035
    4. Building the UK’s First Net Zero industrial cluster around the area’s large hydrogen and net zero projects
    5. Access to digital for all
    6. Making current land use net zero

    The commission will now work with partners and stakeholders, including the local authorities, to plan for the implementation of the key priorities.

    Sam Corcoran, Leader of Cheshire East Council, and co-chair of the Sustainable and Inclusive Growth Commission said: “We have set out a number of ambitious recommendations that we believe will accelerate progress towards our goals of encouraging sustainable economic growth to increase prosperity and create greater equality and opportunities for all, as well as accelerating our progress towards Net Zero.

    “We will do this by creating an inclusive economy, making our land use sustainable, making transport sustainable and achieving our Net Zero goals.

    “So much great work is already going on to achieve these aims but this is about us accelerating that progress and we will be working together to make that happen. We need everyone – residents, businesses and stakeholders engaged to do so.”

    The commission will now also be promoting the plan to stakeholders, residents and businesses to ensure proper collaboration on achieving its aims.

    Other recommendations made by the commission include:

    1. Public investment to address disadvantage and target opportunities
    2. Improve active travel and public transport
    3. Provide new infrastructure/ support for electric cars and zero-emission vehicles to make them cost effective and accessible
    4. Work with businesses, public sector and agriculture to speed up the transition to a circular economy
    5. Retrofitting insulation and clean energy to housing, particularly for social housing and disadvantaged households.

    Robert Davis, CEO of EA Technology, and co-chair of the Sustainable and Inclusive Growth Commission, said: “Businesses are at the heart of our recommendations and are key to us making Cheshire a greener place but also a fairer one, where there are opportunities for everyone.

    “A key part of these plans is encouraging growth that will increase prosperity, providing even greater opportunities for businesses. To make this happen though, we need businesses to work with us, to make them a reality.

    “We will now set out to promote the plan across Cheshire and Warrington and speak with and engage with businesses – not just on what we need from them, but what we can offer to help them grow and achieve their aims.

    “Alongside our public sector partners these businesses will be key to leading the revolution to a sustainable and inclusive economy here in Cheshire and Warrington.”

    You can find out more and read the commission’s report here: Sustainable and Inclusive Growth Commission - Cheshire and Warrington

  • Cycle to School Week - 3 to 7 October 2022

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    Cheshire West and Chester Council is encouraging pupils across the borough to cycle to school during this year’s national Bike to School Week (3 to 7 October).

    The national event, organised by Sustrans and supported by the Bikeability Trust, celebrates cycling to school and the positive impact an active lifestyle can have on pupils’ health and wellbeing.

    Choosing a more active form of travel to get to school, such as walking, cycling or scooting, will also help cut air pollution near the school gates and will help towards the borough’s target of becoming carbon neutral by 2045 as part of the Council’s commitment to tackle the Climate Emergency.

    This year, the Trust is asking children and their families across the UK to choose one of the four pledges:

    • Cycle to school everyday
    • Swap at least one car journey for cycling
    • Cycle with your family
    • Discover somewhere new on a cycle ride

    The Council’s Road Safety team organises free Bikeability courses at both primary and secondary schools across the borough, providing pupils with important road safety knowledge and the bike skills to confidently ride their bike to school. Free courses for families are also available.

    To find out more, visit: bikeability.org.uk/cycletoschoolweek.

  • Great Big Green Week – 24 September – 2 October

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    Residents across west Cheshire can get involved in the UK’s biggest celebration of community action to tackle climate change and protect nature during this year’s Great Big Green Week.


    Running between 24 September and 2 October, the week will see a selection of events running throughout the borough and nationwide.

    As part of the week-long celebrations, Eco Communities has organised a Great Big Green Week Festival on Saturday, 24 September, 11am – 4pm, at Chester Grosvenor Park, supported by Cheshire West and Chester Council, Cheshire West Voluntary Action, Chester Zoo, the Co op and Sykes Holiday Cottages.

    There will be something for everyone at this year’s festival with a fun palace and fair zone, nature activities, workshops and stalls selling sustainable goods.

    Find out more by visiting: Chester Great Big Green Week Festival 2022 – Great Big Green Week (great-big-green-week.com)

    There are lots of other events taking place across the borough.

    Saturday, 24 Sept - Great Big Green Week Clothes Swap

    Fancy a new outfit without spending a single penny? Bring the clothes you no longer wear to the Grosvenor Museum’s clothes swap and trade them for new and exciting pieces. Between 10.30am and 4pm, drop off your old clothes and exchange them for something new.

    Find out more about the clothes swap

    Saturday, 24 Sept – Sunday, 2 Oct – ‘Chester Creates’

    During Great Big Green Week, the Save The Children charity shop in Chester will be showcasing their Upcycled range, including shirts, bags, cushions and furniture.

    Find out more about 'Chester Creates'

    Saturday, 1 October – Frodsham’s Big Green Day

    Climate Action Frodsham is hosting a Big Green Day on Saturday, 1 October, 10am to 4pm, at Frodsham Community Centre on Fluin Lane. There will be a range of stalls, plus displays and talks from experts to help you learn more about our changing climate and ways to reduce our impact on the world.

    Find out more about Frodsham's Big Green Day

    Sunday, 2 October – Make Smaller Footprints

    The Cheshire Federation of WI’s is hosting an event outside of the Delamere Forest visitor centre on Sunday, 2 October, 9am to 4pm. Their theme this year is ‘make small footprints’, with ideas being shared around the small changes we can make in the home and garden. There will be activities for children, ideas for using up leftovers, bee hotel building, wild corners, nectar bar window boxes and homemade cosmetics.

    Find out more about Make Smaller Footprints

    To find out more about Great Big Green Week and all the events taking place nationally, visit: greatbiggreenweek.com.

    Information correct at time of being published. Please check for updates on the individual event organisers’ websites before attending.

  • Energy saving tips

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    With the recent announcement of the new energy price cap increase, which comes in to place in October 2022, there are lots of stories in the media about the rise in costs and what households can do to manage their bills.

    We’ve pulled together links to some useful advice from a range of organisations to help you reduce your energy use and manage your household bills.

    What does the rise in the energy price cap mean?

    Ofgem has published some useful information on their website to explain about the price cap and what is means for households.

    The Money Saving Expert website also has some useful information.

    We’d love to hear of any other ways you are considering saving energy this year. Please add details to the ‘your stories’ section of the website to share your tips.

    Further support
    The Council’s cost of living support page provides advice for residents that may be struggling with the cost of living crisis, including information about welfare rights, benefits and debt advice, and support getting all the money you're entitled to.

  • Council installs solar-powered bins for cleaner streets

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    Ellesmere Port is the latest area to benefit from new solar-powered litter bins with increased capacity meaning fewer bins are needed on the streets.


    Cheshire West and Chester Council has installed 19 new solar-powered litter bins in the town centre.

    The new litter bins, use solar energy to compact the waste inside, providing five times the capacity of a standard litter bin.

    Councillor Karen Shore, the Council's Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Environment, Highways and Strategic Transport, said:

    "We've been able to remove old bins and create more space on the pavements in the town centre boosting accessibility, without losing any capacity.

    These clever bins let our teams know when they need to be emptied, cutting down the time spent on bin emptying rounds, so they can now carry out other duties in the area. Avoiding unnecessary bin emptying journeys also benefits the environment and our Climate Emergency activities.

    This project ties in closely with our Waste Strategy and our aims to deliver an efficient and cost-effective waste management service and tackle the climate emergency. Good quality litter bins in our communities make it easy for residents to dispose of their rubbish, helping to keep our streets clean and tidy."

    The 19 new bins have replaced 39 standard bins with no lack of capacity, the Council worked with local ward members and key stakeholders locally to agree the locations for the new bins.

    Earlier this year the Council announced it was one of the first, if not the first, to use QR codes on bins to allow residents to check when a bin is due to be emptied by StreetCare teams.

    The Council is looking to increase the number of compacter bins in the borough following the installation of 17 new bins in other parts of the borough and will keep up to date with smart bin technology to spot further opportunities.

  • Cheshire West Crowd helps Tattenhall Repair Café get up and running

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    Tattenhall Repair Café raised nearly £3,000 through the Cheshire West Crowd, providing an opportunity for the local community to get household equipment repaired and helping tackle the Climate Emergency at the same time.

    The Cheshire West Crowd, which is being run by Cheshire West and Chester Council in partnership with Spacehive, is the ideal chance for community-led ideas to be created so the borough can become more vibrant, resilient and connected.

    Tattenhall Repair Café ran a successful crowdfunding campaign on the Cheshire West Crowd in spring 2022, receiving donations from 40 different backers and accessing funding pots from both Cheshire West and Chester Council and Tattenhall Parish Council.

    The repair sessions, which are part of the Transition Tattenhall project, are held monthly at the Barbour Institute as a group of volunteers receive equipment from the local community and work their magic.

    Peter Radley, who helps run Transition Tattenhall and the Repair Café, said:

    "The process with the Cheshire West Crowd worked well and the Spacehive staff were really helpful.

    They gave us a lot of guidance and it’s a comprehensive set up so it makes you think about your project.

    When we came to actually doing the crowdfunding, we used social media and the community just got behind us.

    The good thing was that we were able to say you’d only pay money if the project actually goes ahead so people knew they were putting money towards a viable project.

    As part of Tattenhall Parish Council’s annual funding round, it gave us £500 towards the Repair Café and we added this towards our crowdfunding total on the Cheshire West Crowd.

    Cheshire West and Chester Council also supported our project and that was a big help because, while the project might look like a simple thing, there are costs for room hire, insurance and electrical testing equipment."

    Tattenhall Repair Café has run one session to date and it’s been a real hit with the local community.

    Peter added:

    "We were full of people, our repairers were busy all the time and we actually overran by nearly an hour because we had so much to do.

    Everybody was really pleased and we repaired loads of kit, stopping equipment going to landfill.

    We’re against equipment going to landfill, want to reduce consumption and, if we can fix something for someone, we will.

    People were really happy to see a zip going into their jacket, a table being mended, a pushchair being fixed or other simple things that you wouldn’t normally pay people to do, throwing it away and getting another one.

    We’re not interested in major repairs that you might get a tradesperson to do as these are small bits of kit that you might normally throw away.

    We’ve got a good team, but we do need to rotate people and they’re all volunteers so we’re always looking for new people to get involved."

    After launching in 2021, the Cheshire West Crowd has already had two funding rounds and, with around £400,000 contributed by the Council and nearly £760,000 raised in total by local projects, it is one of the most successful initiatives Spacehive has run.

    Project creator workshops will be run by the Council and Spacehive to help projects get ready for crowdfunding, with monthly support sessions taking place in local libraries from August to November 2022.

    The deadline for projects being added to the Cheshire West Crowd is Wednesday 2 November 2022 as the Council will be allocating funds from the various pots in December 2022.

    All projects will need to reach their crowdfunding targets on the Cheshire West Crowd by Tuesday 28 February 2023.

    The following funding pots will be available from Cheshire West and Chester Council in the autumn 2022 round.

    • Community Innovation Fund – £250,000
    • Youth Fund – £20,000
    • Cheshire West Crowd Fund – £90,000
    • COVID Recovery and Renewal Fund – £47,885
    • Climate Change Emergency Fund – £10,000
    • Tackling Poverty Fund – £9,865
  • Funding boost for national woodland creation programme

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    Cheshire West and Chester Council has welcomed news of funding for year three of the national Trees for Climate programme, which is playing a major part in increasing access to nature for communities across England.

    The funding will see tree coverage across the borough increase, with the area's local Community Forest, The Mersey Forest, managing both national delivery of the Trees for Climate programme and delivering trees in the ground locally.

    England's 13 Community Forests aim to plant around 1,433 hectares (ha) of trees – or around 2,007 football pitches – across England, thanks to over £34 million of funding announced for year three of the Trees for Climate programme.

    The funding will help to provide grants that cover up to 100 per cent of the costs for tree planting and 15 years of maintenance payments, to ensure that any planting continues to deliver long term value for the landowner.

    The Mersey Forest team can support landowners with the funding application and provide free, no obligation advice to people or organisations considering tree planting, whether you have a small pocket of unused land on your property or are a farmer with several hectares of land looking to diversify income streams.

    Cheshire West and Chester Council is playing a leading role, nationally, by acting as the legal accountable body for the whole Trees for Climate programme and has pledged to support schemes to accelerate tree planting in the borough in their Climate Emergency Response Plan and Land Action Plan.

    Councillor Matt Bryan, Cabinet Member for Housing, Planning and Climate Emergency, said:

    "The Mersey Forest is one of 13 Community Forests across England helping to create woodlands near to cities, towns and villages, providing more deprived communities with greater access to nature and helping to bring a range of benefits to neighbourhoods, including improving people's health and wellbeing.

    This funding will provide a vital boost to both the borough and the country's efforts in the fight against climate change."

    Paul Nolan, Director of The Mersey Forest and Chair of England's Community Forests, said:

    "This latest round of funding will allow us to establish even more woodlands for local communities across the country to benefit from.

    Over the past two years, England's Community Forests have worked closely with DEFRA, Forestry Commission, Natural England and over 70 local authorities and a huge range of landowners to establish more than 1000 hectares of new woodland. We are looking forward to continuing this joint endeavour and helping the country to reach its net zero goal."

    Collectively around 2,300 hectares of trees – equivalent to around 3,220 football pitches – will be planted as part of this year's total funding allocation from the Nature for Climate Fund of £44.2 million. The funding will benefit 13 Community Forests, as well as the National Forest, Northern Forest, Northumberland Forest, the Forest for Cornwall and Woodlands for Water. These projects will expand woodlands near our cities, towns, villages and rivers - giving more people greater access to nature and improving health and wellbeing as well as playing an important role in Government ambitions to treble tree planting rates by the end of this Parliament and reach net zero.

    Large, small, well-designed and diverse woodlands created thanks to this funding will be more resilient to climate change, as well as natural hazards such as wildfire and storms – playing an important role in helping us adapt to a warmer world. They will help to reduce flood risk in vulnerable areas, provide sustainable UK grown timber and provide more places for nature and biodiversity to thrive.

    Lord Zac Goldsmith, Forestry Minister, said:

    "Our economies, livelihoods and well-being all rely on nature.

    As well as tackling the impacts of climate change and biodiversity loss, this significant funding will create diverse treescapes across the country and improve the health and wellbeing of local communities by giving them more opportunities to enjoy nature on their doorstep."

    The announcement comes following a successful planting season in 2021/22, which saw The Mersey Forest plant over 100 hectares of new woodland.

    During the last planting season they supported a landowner near Frodsham to create over 7ha of new woodland and a native mixed wildflower meadow that, when established, will become a carbon store and a space where wildlife can thrive.

    The team has also supported a number of community projects in west Cheshire this year including at The Five Villages Hall, Backford, numerous school sites and the COVID-19 reflection areas, created in parks across the borough.

    All trees planted in Cheshire and Merseyside are helping to grow The Mersey Forest and the larger Northern Forest, which stretches from Liverpool to the Yorkshire coast.

    Any landowners, farmers or organisations with land suitable for tree planting and interested in getting involved in the next phase of planting, which is due to start in the autumn, can contact The Mersey Forest team by calling: 01925 816217 or emailing: mail@merseyforest.org.uk