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Flowers Can Talk

 

Flowers Really Do Talk!

We all love a flower, especially in Wimbledon Town Centre, and increasing the amount of planting is a great way to bring in life, colour, nature and biodiversity. But what if there was something different to a flower bed? What if the plants could grow from a lamppost? And what if the plants could tell you when they needed watering?

Business Improvement District Love Wimbledon thought we would give it a go, after local urban greening company Scotscape contacted us about their new LivingPillar™.

A new vertical LivingPillar™ has been created in Wimbledon Town Centre, acting as a trial,  the first of its kind in South London. Packed with petunias, 84 of them and very much part of the Wimbledon Tennis Championships colour theme, the new Living Pillar™ has an irrigation system which runs on solar power using a high efficiency solar panel (at the top of the pillar) to recharge the systems battery source. Better still, it features a monitor which enables water management remotely via an App, whereby the plants are reporting when they are about to run out of water as the tank becomes empty. Scotscape monitors this and when the plants need some water and the reservoir needs topping up, it gets done! The technology ensures zero water is wasted, as any excess irrigation water is recycled.

Helen Clark Bell CEO of Love Wimbledon commented:

‘We initially set out to improve the neglected flower bed outside Evans Cycle so worked with Merton Council to get the wooden bench refurbished and the retaining wall repointed. Scotscape approached us and offered to overhaul the bed, providing new plants for the flowerbeds. We had heard of Scotscape’s innovative lamppost solution; this was the perfect place to trial a Living Pillar™ in Merton. Future planting will include air scrubbing plants helping to improve the air quality whilst also making the town greener.  Where space is limited, horizontal planting provides a very different opportunity and where tree planting is restricted, planted posts and pillars offer a  space-saving solution as well as a visual treat.’

   
 During installation of the pillar

Angus Cunningham, CEO of Scotscape added:

‘Scotscape and Love Wimbledon have aligned thoughts on improving places and spaces through planting, By introducing sustainable planting and biodiversity in tricky locations, the Living Pillar™ will do a little bit more to help with air quality and longer term the app should enable us to measure air quality in the area as well as keep our plants watered when they ask!’

   
The Evans flowerbed before and after refurbishment

Businesses are already talking about the improvements:

‘Many thanks to Love Wimbledon BID for transformation of a neglected flowerbed, into something sustainable, and great to look at.’

– Manager, Wibbas Down Inn

And that’s not all – bird, bee and insect boxes will be installed in the autumn, with the planting undergrowth acting as the perfect refuge for urban wildlife and insects. The Petunias will be replaced with plant species carefully selected for their seasonal pollen and nectar production, as well as their ability to remove polluting particulate matter from air.

The LivingPillar™ can  be found in front of Evans Cycles on Gladstone Road in Wimbledon Town Centre.

Wimbledon Businesses Awarded Recycling Certificates

Wimbledon businesses have been awarded certificates for their amazing recycling efforts in 2019, by the award-winning, zero to landfill, recycling and waste company First Mile.

 

This is a result of a collaboration between First Mile and Love Wimbledon, which has allowed businesses in Wimbledon to make terrific savings on their waste collection and recycling schemes.

Elliott Wood Partnership and Marcus Beale Architects were awarded Gold certificates, whilst other businesses were awarded Silver, including: CarebaseWestmont Management LtdCapsticks SolicitorsLush (Wimbledon)Phokas Barbers and more.

The criteria for certification was based on company’s Recycling Rates, the number of First Mile streams adopted, the kg’s recycled and the kg of CO2 offset.

 

 

Through First Mile, we offer businesses benefits such as FREE annual allocation of mixed or cardboard recycling, reduced rates for all subsequent recycling and waste collections, food recycling – provision of a FREE starter pack to include caddies and a set of bags, daily waste and recycling collections, FREE quarterly Waste Electrical & Electronic Equipment (WEEE) recycling and more.

Did your business receive a Silver certificate, and would you like to Go For Gold? By simply introducing one more recycling service, such as food waste, you can increase your overall recycling rate, reduce the number of general waste sacks you order, save money and help the planet. Click here for more information on understanding Your First Mile certificate.

Display your certificate proudly on the wall of your business for all to see and tag @lovewimbledon on TwitterFacebook or Instagram, so we can help you sing about your green efforts!

If you’d like to find out more about how Love Wimbledon can support your business to be more green and improve your climate change efforts, contact info@lovewimbledon.org.

Support Local Businesses this Christmas

In light of the fast-approaching Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Christmas Day, Love Wimbledon is urging businesses to encourage their employees to shop local this festive season and help to support small local independent businesses, charity shops and markets in Wimbledon Town Centre.

It is evident that online shopping has become increasingly popular in recent years, with buying behaviour changing rapidly too. Now more than ever, consumers are buying and returning more items online, with next-day delivery and free returns becoming the new standard. Often shoppers buy clothes online with the expectation of returning them, with recent figures suggesting that almost half of what consumers spend online, is returned.

What is often forgotten is the environmental impact of these few mouse clicks, which is becoming increasingly relevant given the current state of climate change. Despite its advantages, shopping online has a large impact on the environment. Shopping online often means receiving more packages within multiple deliveries, typically from delivery trucks or vans, with excess packaging used, including single-use plastic. Compare this to shopping locally, where consumers tend to use their one trip to their local town centre to combine tasks, e.g. purchase Christmas presents, grab some groceries and browse through a bookstore.

 

Photo Credits: First Mile

 

Shopping local, also means that the money spent stays local. In other words, rather than adding to the profits of multi-national chains, this money goes into the pockets of your neighbours in the community. By choosing to shop local, this money could be helping a family-run independent business, who’s owners are trying to fund a new bike for their child. Local businesses tend to be smaller, produce less waste than their enormous counterparts, and usually buy locally, live locally, and therefore create less air pollution and traffic.

Love Wimbledon is passionate about sustainability and as a business, we look wherever possible to reduce our environmental impact. Whether this is through managing a single-use plastic free market or using local businesses as suppliers, we ensure we have sustainability on our agenda within all our planning.

 

“By shopping locally at our independent businesses, charity shops and our market stalls, you are helping to keep the character and diversity of our town centre alive. Shopping online also means losing out on receiving great customer service and often, local businesses offer good value and outstanding, personal service all year round, bringing a warm, welcoming personality to a town centre whilst building that all-important sense of community and belonging”

– Helen Clark Bell, CEO of Love Wimbledon.

 

Go one step further this Black Friday and Cyber Monday, by resisting the urge to sell more and instead opting for recycling or reusing initiatives instead, which help reduce the demand for new products and their associated carbon footprint. Your business can be more efficient by considering sustainability issues. These can include your supply chain, reducing your overhead costs, interrogating your waste streams to improve your recycling rate and generally support the business community in the Wimbledon Town Centre.

Love Wimbledon has teamed up with award-winning, zero to landfill, recycling and waste company First Mile, to help businesses make terrific savings through waste collections and recycling. To find out more information on sustainable cost-saving schemes offered by Love Wimbledon, visit our website.

 

Photo Credits: First Mile

 

Shop smart and shop local this season, and urge others to do the same. Wimbledon is full of great independent stores including Fayre & SquareFieldersAubergine Art GalleryHealth Zone and Phokas Barbers, as well as charity stops, including the National Institute for African Studies charity shop,  Cancer Research and Oxfam, and is home to our highly successful Christmas Markets. Opt against contributing to overproduction and the environmental impact of this, by going green this Black Friday and supporting our independent businesses on Small Business Saturday, Saturday 7th December.

 

Join our vision to ensure a brighter future for Wimbledon and help to strengthen our town centre businesses.