Transition to a more resilient “skilled-up” community
Why share skills? “A more resilient community will require us to be adept in a wide range of skills – skills that until recently were everyday but are now greatly undervalued (food growing, repairing things, natural building, maintaining renewable energy systems)…Since the 1960s we have gradually lost skills that were once commonplace. Most people who grew up during the ‘40s and ‘50s learnt, almost automatically, how to garden, repair things, look after small livestock, and generally make do with little.”
(Transition Network on re-skilling)
TTK skill-sharing initiatives
Kingston Repair Cafe - we are currently (2022) busy planning and fund-raising for a regular Repair Café in Kingston.
Stitch in Time, TTK's monthly sewing workshop, returned several times in 2019-2020 to a new venue, The Circulatory in Berrylands, and with a new logo (see right, with thanks to KVA's Connected Kingston), but found it hard to keep meeting during the pandemic and afterwards, so is currently taking a break, with our equipment remains in store until we find a suitable venue, perhaps as part of the proposed Kingston Repair Cafe. See below in Past TTK initiatives for a brief history of our sociable sewing sessions, which began with a bag-making workshop in 2009 and then ran monthly from January 2010 to 2014. See more about Stitch in Time from 2009 to 2014 here.
Left: A typical skill-sharing session at the old Kingston Environment Centre
You can also learn a lot of useful skills on YouTube, which has "How to..." videos on almost anything, including cooking and repairing things.
Get inspiration to repair creatively and beautifully from these images from Eternally Yours, a free exhibition at Somerset House,exploring ideas around care, repair and healing in summer 2022.
Other local projects
Stitch ‘n’ Chat at Kingston Environment Centre - fortnightly knitting and crocheting for refugees and other good causes,
Richmond Maker Labs: a Maker Space and hackspace in the middle of neighbouring Ham, open and free to everyone with an interest in DIY and craft - carpentry, biohacking, chemistry, gardening, knitting... Do you need help with anything electrical, mechanical or technical? Or can you offer such help? Contact us via the website or just drop in to a meeting!
Past TTK initiatives
A Stitch in Time, 2009 - 2014, Transition Town Kingston’s sociable sewing sessions, began with a bag-making workshop in 2009 and then ran monthly from January 2010. Our workshops were an opportunity to share skills and repair or upcycle clothes in need of a little TLC, encouraging re-use, repair, renovations and upcycling clothes and other textiles, keeping them out of the waste system and saving money at the same time. Everyone learnt something, but, regretfully, declining take-up and the lack of a suitable permanent work-space with storage, led to our decision to take a break at the end of 2014. See more about Stitch in Time from 2009 to 2014 here. Since then we have been somewhat nomadic.
Kingston Kitchen - a series of seasonal cooking and preserving workshops. See Food section for more information
May 2012 - 2 free half-day workshops on publicity for local green groups with Lynne Walsh, journalist, media adviser, campaigner and trainer: tips on building winning stories and communicating with journalists with examples of good, bad and mediocre writing, and simple techniques to make writing more direct and vibrant. You can read some of the notes and advice that were an outcome of the workshops here.
March 2012, Learn a skill: making a raised vegetable bed - a chance to learn how to build a raised bed from recycled materials and have a go at all the skills yourself. All materials, tools, knowledge and refreshments were provided and there was a picnic lunch afterwards.