Preston Climate Emergency Centre launches in central Preston with a range of talks and workshops lined up

Posted on - 20th August, 2022 - 12:00pm | Author - | Posted in - Campaigns, Flag Market, Preston City Centre, Preston Council, Preston News, Things to Do in and around Preston, What's On in Preston
Preston Climate Emergency Centre will be holding workshops and talks on how to tackle climate change.

A new centre has opened up in Preston with the aim of bringing local communities together to tackle climate change. The Preston Climate Emergency Centre is the 19th climate emergency centre that has been set up in the UK and the first in the north. We went to find out more.

“Some people believe that they can’t do anything to tackle climate change, but we believe that they can,” said Debra Whiteside, Co-ordinator of Preston Climate Emergency Centre. “The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has said that if we act now we can make a positive impact on the environment and climate change.”

Artist Scott Chaney works on the centre’s window displays. Debra Whiteside with the Frack Free Nanas Tina and Julie. Pic Keith Martin

The centre launched on Saturday 13 August, bringing together climate change activists from Climate Action Preston and Frack Free Lancashire.

Carol Henshaw, Preston City Councillor and Cabinet Member for Climate Change, Keith Martin, South Ribble Borough Councillor and Lead Member for Climate Change, Tina Louise Rothery, from Frack Free Lancashire and Andrew Glasford, Climate Policy Officer at Preston City Council have all been involved in helping set the project up. Space Generators, a charity based in London, helped to facilitate the use of the space on Market Place, in between the old jewellers’ shop and Nando’s, for the centre.

The launch brought together climate action groups from Preston. Pic Keith Martin

“We would like the centre to be a ‘safe space’ for people to come and find out about climate change through workshops, talks and interactive games,” said Debra. “We would like different communities to come and discuss how we can adapt to food shortages and the energy crisis. I don’t know all the answers but working together we can come up with solutions, whether it’s teaching people to grow their own food, repair items rather than send them to landfill and adapting to the energy crisis by exploring if people can apply for grants to insulate their homes or discussing energy saving tips.”

On the opening day, new workshops were planned such as teaching people how to repair their clothes and furniture, upcycling workshops, a toy swapping service and children’s story time sessions. There are also plans to install a refill station in the centre.

Preston’s Climate Emergency Centre is a safe space for everyone to find out about how they can help solve the climate crisis. Pic Keith Martin

“We’d be really interested to hear from people or groups that would like to run workshops focussing on climate or environmental issues. We’d also be really interested to hear from anyone who could spare a couple of hours a week and would like to get involved. The centre is run entirely by volunteers, so it would be great to get some more people on board.

“In addition we’d like people to take part in Climate Fresk, a collaborative workshop which teaches people the fundamental science behind climate change and empowers people to take action. The sessions are three hours long but they’re fun and interactive and we would provide the space and refreshments. Please drop us a message if you would like to get take part.”

Debra continued: “There is a Green Choir that will take place every Friday evening to bring people together and they can, if they wish, perform at the opening of the Big Green Week in September.”

The Big Green Week will take place from 24 September to 2 October, when workshops and events focussing on the environment and climate change will take place in The Larder, Preston Climate Emergency Centre and on the Flag Market.

Children got involved in painting the window displays at the launch event. Pic Keith Martin

“We need to change how we consume things, how we buy things and reduce our carbon footprint in a big way. To be an environmental activist you don’t need to put yourself in chains, there is a gentler approach through neighbourhood action and getting involved in the local community. People shouldn’t have to get arrested to make the world a safer place.”

Preston Climate Emergency Centre is based at 32 Market Place in the city centre.

To find out more about opening hours and the events coming up at Preston Climate Emergency Centre visit the organisation’s Facebook page.

To get involved, volunteer or run a workshop at the Preston Climate Emergency Centre email

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