I visited two CRNS members this week – both completely different, but both very inspiring.
On Tuesday I went down to Moffat CAN. You are greeted by flowerbeds full of lupins and sweet williams – all in bloom in spite of the dreadful rain – which stopped during my visit, with even a watery sun making an appearance. Behind the flowerbeds there is a lot of hard work going on. Reg Fairbairn, Recycling Officer and Chris Balance, Development Manager showed me round a very busy organisation: compacting cans and plastics for recycling, composting using the fearsome rocket, market gardening, manufacturing biofuel, and an aquaponics system growing herbs and vegetables in a virtuous circle involving tropical fish.
The next day I went in the other direction to Tayside Recyclers in Dundee. Based around a massive property – an old jute mill, real industrial heritage, they recondition fridges, cookers, washing machines and tumble driers; collect and pass on re-used furniture and household items, and also house a real treasure chest of books, maps and general miscellanea. Shiona Baird showed me around; she and the staff have done an amazing job of reclaiming and rationalising this enormous space. It really was a pleasure to walk round – and they have even managed to include a garden – with vegetables growing in an old bath.