Fossil Free Network Gathering 2018
Members of divestment groups from all over the UK came together at the weekend for the 2018 Fossil Free gathering, in the idyllic setting of Ingestre Hall in Staffordshire. The event was organised by 350.org and Friends of the Earth and they had put together an action packed programme.
It was an excellent opportunity to rekindle old friendships and forge new ones. I arrived on the Friday evening and was tasked with hanging banners in an ornate hall with elaborate wooden paneling which was a bit of a challenge as we had to use books, bulldog clips and string as drawing pins and Blu Tak were not allowed!
Dinner was followed by climate story-telling and table football, along with a couple of beers as we relaxed before the full weekend schedule.
The programme on Saturday included sessions on climate justice, along with a series of workshops: working effectively with decision makers; engagement; mobilisation planning; & digital organising skills. I attended the session on working effectively with decision makers. Later sessions included movement building, a relaunch of Fossil Free, broadening the campaign to be slightly wider than just divestment, and a regional catch-up.
Unfortunately, I was not able to stay for the Sunday which included more workshops such as creative action planning, growing your group and working with trade unions. However, the notes from the weekend will be collated and all the slides and presentations used will be shared with attendees.
The hope is that these inspirational gatherings will become an annual event in the climate change calendar. Roll on 2019!