8 February 2015
Gill Coombs, Green Party candidate for the Totnes Constituency, attended the Devon Convergence, a local economy conference at Exeter Community Centre, on Friday, 6th February.
The packed conference was hosted and facilitated by Jay Tompt and Hal Gillmore of Totnes Reconomy Project and Michelle Virgo from Plymouth Local Enterprise Network. Speakers included Julie Richardson of Schumacher College and Tony Greenham of New Economics Foundation.
Participants came from all over Devon to explore ideas for developing a robust, sustainable local economy, and to share and develop their own projects. Artists captured themes from the day on big murals, and one of the participants created a rap cleverly covering points from all the topics discussed.
Gill Coombs commented, ‘Today has been a wonderful example of what can happen when passionate individuals from all sorts of backgrounds get together to see what they can achieve together, and in their communities. The speakers gave some great ideas to start us thinking, but most of the day was about us generating our own ideas around food production, land use, home building and technology. Hal was very good at making sure we committed to actions, with timescales, to ensure that a day of talking turns into a year of doing. We finished the day planning to meet and celebrate our achievements in February 2016.’