Hands-on and muddy at the local Carnival

Carnival returned to the village of Wroughton this Summer after a couple of years’ rest, and the Wroughton Greens had a stall at the corner of the field near the trees – a very nice spot!

I wanted to try something potentially more engaging than a table full of leaflets, so I used an idea I’d seen at the Eden Project, and set up a stall making Wildflower Seedbombs instead. This involved assembling compost, wildflower seeds (several dear friends helped me out with these), water, chilli powder (magic ingredient to keep the bugs from eating the seeds prior to germination), and a bucket of clay soil from my garden.

The chilli powder tip-off was from Kathryn at Incredible Edible, and was just the thing to pique the curiosity of youngsters and adults alike as I made batch after batch of chilli-flavoured mud, and invited passers-by to add the seeds or get muddy and shape the seedbombs. I was delighted at the response, as a large number of children wanted to get muddy, and they and their parents heard about biodiversity and gardening for wildlife while seedbombs were made. A large number of adults without children were very happy to take seedbombs home with them, and I used up several of the leftover ‘Greener In’ campaign stickers to fasten the paper around the seedbombs for taking away – upcycling or reusing of some kind, anyway!

Soap and water and another tub, a nailbrush and a towel and hand sanitiser were on hand, so nobody had to go away muddy.

Most of all, it was a very congenial way to interact with many Wroughton neighbours and have friendly introductory chats with many folk I hadn’t met before too. It was certainly easier talking to people about the Green Party and what I was doing there, for having something to *do* as well as hand out information fliers. Gardeners and families and teenagers and folk who I know support and are active in other parties came by to chat and went away with a seedbomb or two.

Very many thanks to Tilly and Kate and Simon for their time and help; in the end we all rather enjoyed the whole thing. I have plans for next time which involve liaising with caterers and reducing waste, though the Carnival committee had mostly recruited caterers who had already rejected single-use plastic for their businesses – there is so much green-minded thinking out there to tap into and connect to!

Talis Kimberley-Fairbourn
Ward Team Leader & Prospective Borough Candidate, Wroughton
5th July 2016