Archive for December, 2016

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Yarn-bombed Christmas tree to double as blankets for homeless

Posted on Saturday 24th December 2016 at 11:29 am by SH (Editor)

Members of the St Mike’s Yarn Bombers (SMYB) with their Christmas tree (l-r): Debbie Bambridge, Emily Preston, Kia Harris, Sara Clothier and Zoe Garde-Evans.

Knitters from St Michael’s Church in Stoke Gifford have not only created their own Christmas tree from yarn – but when the decorations come down they plan to recycle it into blankets for local homeless charities.

Over 800 woolly green squares have been knitted or crocheted and then stacked into a six-foot tall Christmas tree by the St Mike’s Yarn Bombers (SMYB).

Christmas tree created by the St Mike's Yarn Bombers (SMYB) of Stoke Gifford, Bristol.

Whilst thousands of real Christmas trees are recycled into compost – the knitted tree will be dismantled and sewn into at least ten woolly blankets for two Bristol charities supporting homeless people.

The yarn bombing group has been delighting local people with surprise displays and decorations at community events in Stoke Gifford since early 2016 (see previous Journal article here). But when they launched the Christmas tree project they were joined by around a hundred other knitters across Bristol and beyond. Church members, craft groups, family, friends and children produced squares. They were even sent three green squares from a knitter in Washington DC in the United States.

A total of 848 different green squares have been stacked into to the woolly Christmas tree. Of these, 816 have been knitted or crocheted and 32 are made of felt and were decorated by children at the Messy Church which meets once a month at St Michael’s.

More: Blankets will go to Emmaus Bristol and Julian Trust night shelter »

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Councillors to press for deferral of Hatchet Road bus lane plans

Posted on Tuesday 20th December 2016 at 8:24 pm by SH (Editor)

Cllr Colin Hunt, of South Gloucestershire Council, at a public meeting to discuss plans for a bus lane on Hatchet Road as part of the Cribbs Patchway MetroBus Extension scheme. Cllr Ernie Brown, chair of Stoke Gifford Parish Council, at a public meeting to discuss plans for a bus lane on Hatchet Road as part of the Cribbs Patchway MetroBus Extension scheme.

Stoke Gifford’s three South Glos councillors have signalled their intention to formally call for the implementation of a controversial new southbound bus lane on Hatchet Road to be deferred until the impact of the new Stoke Gifford By-Pass on traffic flows through the village are known.

The new bus lane, approved by South Gloucestershire Council’s (SGC’s) Environment & Community Services (ECS) Committee in July, forms part of the Cribbs Patchway MetroBus Extension (CPME) scheme, which will link Bristol Parkway Station with The Mall at Cribbs Causeway and serve the new developments planned for the former Filton Airfield site.

The councillors’ intended plan of action was confirmed after a packed public meeting held at St Michael’s Primary School on 22nd November demonstrated the strength of feeling amongst local residents against the bus lane proposals.

The meeting, attended by around 140 people, was addressed principally by Cllr Colin Hunt, a member of the ECS Committee which approved the Hatchet Road bus lane option and also chair of the West of England Joint Transport Executive Committee, which oversees the region’s MetroBus projects.

Facing an audience which seemed to be universally opposed to the Hatchet Road plans, which will see mature hedgerows and scores of mature trees ripped out, Cllr Hunt made it clear from the start of the meeting that he was not prepared to consider any alternatives, saying: “one way or another we’ve got to put a bus lane down there. All we’re trying to do is provide a fast bus service. I understand that you don’t want to lose green space, but we all have to make sacrifices.”

Cllr Hunt revealed that since the decision in July, council officers have been investigating a number of measures that might mitigate the impact of the scheme, such as moving the main area of ‘land take’ over to the Forty Acres side of the road and reducing the width of the bus lane, both of which would lead to less vegetation being taken from Meade Park and adjacent to residents’ homes on the east side of the road. However, both of these options would require further public consultation and thereby delay the scheme.

Claim: Committee’s decision is "intellectually challenged," says a resident »

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