Residents of our local Eco village have been served with an eviction notice to quit the land.
Now, first of all, let’s not confuse this with Eco the very chic upcycling shop on Chiswick High Road in which Colin Firth has a vested interest. This Eco village is a ‘grow your own village’ – a showcase for settlement and statement living. The community has been trying to prevent the stretch of land, languishing between the Brentford side of Kew Bridge and a Fullers Pub, which has been earmarked for development as another expensive new build with flats to be sold at very high prices.
I’ve been very intrigued by their presence which has garnered a lot of media coverage. And yesterday, they finally left but not before we popped in to say hello.
We’ve had a lot of environmental campaigning round here of late and I’m excited by it because it just goes to show that politics exists outside of the rowdy House of Commons. Residents of West London breathed a sigh of relief when plans for the third runway were scrapped recently. It took a lot of campaigning to get local voices heard but it has obviously worked.
I’m all for green living and I think it’s important that our children are aware of what’s going on outside the classroom and in the community. We recycle our rubbish, don’t drive a car, use eco lightbults, give old clothes to charity shops, try and use as few harmful cleaning chemicals as possible and turn the tv and other electronics off at the mains at night. Nice little housekeeping measures but not exactly radical lifestyle choices, hence my afterschool trip with Miniminx to meet the lovely people at the controversial eco village in Kew.
This is a great example of how people are taking their own initiative to highlight environmental issues.
I was reminded of Tracy Emin’s My Bed installation when we saw this.
And this sculpture had some appeal for my daughter.
We cycled to the settlement which is behind hoardings. I had a funny feeling as we entered the place; it took me back to the Spiral Tribe parties I used to go to. Although this village was eerily quiet, a lot of people had already left.
We were entering a new world, would we be welcomed, would this be a mistake? Were we going to be safe? The thing about places like these is that you have to leave normal sensibilities at the gate and open your mind to a completely different way of life. So we did.
And we were welcomed. I did ask if it was okay for us to come and have a look around because I wanted to show my daughter what this was all about and she might learn something.
This is Rose who was very kind to my daughter and was happy for us to photograph her for my blog. I love the idea of washing up al fresco.
I’m not quite so sure about the bathroom. When I pointed out the bath tub to my daughter, she was aghast…
Since Miniminx has been on a residential earthkeeping course for a week this year, I thought she would be able to compare the two sites. She said she couldn’t because they were too different. She was worried for the people living there because she thought someone would come in and flatten the place to start building. So I explained to her what the eviction order meant and the eco villagers were not in mortal danger and that they had played a meaningful part in creating a discussion around land development. She’ll be pleased to know they left peacefully and with dignity.
Check out the blog here, it’s got some amazing photos and lots of words about philosophy.