A biodiversity and climate action network for the South Hams in South Devon

  • Helping link action groups for the sharing of ideas, occasional pooling of resources, and support for new groups.
  • Does your parish have an action group? If not, we’re happy to share our experience. See About page for contact details.

Contact Details

Hover mouse over map. Parishes with action groups light up. Click for information and links. Shading to be added to indicate parishes with groups.

Contact Details
Sustainable Staverton Sustainable Littlehempston Sustainable South Brent Sustainable Dittisham Yealm Alliance Sustainable Harbourne Valley Sustainable Blackawton Diptford Sustainable Community Sustainable Malborough & South Huish (SMASH) Totnes PL:21 Sustainable Dartmouth Rattery EAG Kingsbridge Sustainable Kingswear Bigbury Net Zero Sustainable Dartington Thurlestone Cornwood Environment Group

Sustainable Staverton

Website: staverton.org
Facebook: Sustainable Staverton

  • Greener homes / group co-ordinator: Simon Oldridge - email - 07889 379910
  • Biodiversity group: Julia Bond – email
  • Transport group: John Forte – email

Sharing knowledge and ideas, and offering help, on protecting and restoring biodiversity, and ultimately eliminating our carbon emissions.

Meeting once a month on zoom. Please come along. Formed following parish council declaration of a climate emergency in 2019 with a goal of net zero carbon by 2030.

Example projects:

  • off-road cycle route from Staverton to Dartington estate - ongoing
  • info and support for more wildflower meadows
  • measure and monitor total home energy usage in the parish based
  • Help for people on benefits with Green Homes Grant
  • River water quality monitoring - developing
  • support on green retrofit for your home
  • Locally sourced food campaign / info.

Sustainable Littlehempston

Facebook:  Click here

A group of volunteers working to improve biodiversity and help reduce carbon emissions in the parish of Littlehempston.

The group was formed in September 2020 and is now looking at the following projects:

  • Tree planting and biodiversity in the parish
  • Improving energy efficiency in parishioners homes
  • Improving the walking and cycling connection to Totnes
  • Helping parishioners grow and share food and reduce food waste

If you live in the parish of Littlehempston and would like to get involved, please contact Nick Oldridge.

Sustainable South Brent

Website: Sustainablesouthbrent.org.uk

  • Marsh Composting Centre - email
  • Hedges and Woodlands - email
  • Transport Group - email
  • 4B’s (Brent’s Bees, Bugs and Butterflies) - email

Set up in 2006, we now have a number of well-established projects and almost 250 members. SSB works closely with South Brent Parish Council who declared a Climate and Ecological Emergency in 2019.

The Trustee group is presently reviewing strategic priorities and is currently focussing new effort on evaluating transport projects.

Example Projects

  • Marsh Composting Centre: Green waste from the village is shredded and composted by a rota of volunteers. Resulting compost sold for a modest price. Normally open 10am -1pm Sundays.
  • Hedges and Woodlands: our enthusiastic steepers meet regularly to manage local woodland and hedges using traditional skills.
  • Transport Group: Bike Bank for free bike hire plus new projects: exploring community EV’s and Bike E-conversion.
  • 4B’s (Brent’s Bees, Bugs and Butterflies). Proactive management and creation of meadow and orchard areas in public spaces. Recent wildlife garden network initiative and plans to rewild more areas around the village.
  • School Garden: Regular gardening sessions are held as part of the curriculum for all children. The project also assists the school with recycling, energy saving, trips and workshops relating to many aspects of sustainability.

Full details on our website.

Zero Carbon Group:  Website link


Sustainable Dittisham

Sustainable Dittisham, or SusDit, works in the rough area of the parish of Dittisham and surrounding areas. We collaborate with the Parish Council and with other groups in the area, most notably Sustainable Blackawton.
Currently we have a Habitat Review in progress which has mapped the land owned or managed by the Parish Council, made suggestions for changes to the maintenance schedule and suggestions for habitat enhancements.
This will not only enhance the biodiversity of the area, but should also represent a year-on-year saving to maintenance costs.

SusDit are members of DCEN - Devon Community Energy Network
Sune Nightingale represents us, and the Parish Council, on the South Hams Climate Change and Biodiversity Community Forum group

Main group coordinators
Sune NightingaleRos Neal, Peter Coxon

Habitat subgroup coordinator
John Nightingale and Ros Neal.

Transport subgroup coordinator

Peter Coxon.

We are keen and open to collaborate with other groups in the area.

Yealm Alliance

The Yealm Climate Emergency and Environment Action Alliance
ContactCllr Matthew Chown - email
To coordinate a collaborative response from our five Parish Councils in positively addressing the climate emergency, and achieving the Alliance objectives and deliverables.
● Ensure that the climate emergency forms the basis of every decision we make, and every action we take.
● Help facilitate the reduction of carbon emissions to net-zero.
● Contribute to increasing natural environments.
● Prepare for any required adaptations to respond to the effects, and impacts, of global warming.
● Support everyone within our parishes (residents, businesses and organisations) to positively address the climate emergency.
● Collaborate with partners (locally, nationally and internationally) to positively address the climate emergency.
● Call on higher levels of government to provide the funding and resources needed to address the climate emergency.
Support each individual council to create a climate emergency ‘action plan’ specific to their parish.
Produce a ‘proposal’ outlining our shared aspirations for cross-parish initiatives.
Create a climate emergency ‘action list’ for the benefit of residents.

Sustainable Harbourne Valley

To promote sustainable development, enhance habitat, and increase biodiversity, especially in the area comprising the Harbourne Valley, including the villages of Harbertonford and Harberton and the surrounding hamlets.
To achieve this we will promote a less polluted, more wildlife friendly, and therefore more resilient environment which will benefit the health and well-being of all members of the community.

Website - www.sustainableharbournevalley.org.uk
Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/groups/206549237377480
Email -

Formed at a public meeting in March 2020 just before first lockdown.
Core group meet fortnightly on Zoom
February 2021 launched SHV website and small charity with 30+ members

SHV works closely with Harberton Parish Council HPC
One successful Community Grant Fund application

Example Projects

  • Written Managing Green Space document which has HPC approval.
  • Setting up Greening our Churchyards project in both churches in the parish.
  • Ready to organise Group Litter Pick Walks once Covid restrictions allow.

Projects In Process

  • Emerging Citizen’s Science Research of Water Health of River Harbourne.
  • Wildlife Habitats sub group
  • Wildflower Seed Sowing in up to 40 parish gardens.

SHV is made up of local residents from a variety of backgrounds and with a wide range of interests and skills.
If you would like to support any of the projects already under way,
please feel welcome to get involved.
Or, if you have an idea
- to help make the SHV area more environmentally friendly, or
- to encourage sustainable behaviour,
we'll try to help you make it happen.

Emma Croft represents SHV on the Harberton Parish Council
SHV is represented in the Sustainable South Hams Network

Sustainable Blackawton

Website: click

ContactRobin Mewes - email

Sustainable Blackawton serve to support environmental and sustainable ideas and objectives in the parish.  We normally meet monthly and have recently sponsored a film night, planted trees, daffodils, and wild flowers and set up a recycle collection for non-kerbside plastic.  Further planting schemes are in abeyance pending the release from covid-19 restrictions.

Diptford Sustainable Community

Facebook: Diptford Sustainable Community


We are an informal group which aims to bring together both individuals and the various groups already in existence to work collaboratively towards an improved sense of community and a more sustainable way of living. We have good links with Sustainable South Brent.

Sustainable Malborough & South Huish (SMASH)

ContactTony Lyle - email

Started July 2020

Awareness raising projects:

In development

  • Biodiversity improvement through Tree planting, Wildflower patches, Bug Hotels. School involvement following their help with the Beach Clean.
  • Solar PV with battery providing EV charging points at Mal. VH.
  • Energy Fair postponed from last year.
  • Helping low waged and vulnerable households reduce their energy bills through LEAP and SDCE.


Overview text on aims / what the group does.  Bullet points or short paras.

Facebook: link 1 + link 2

Est after Totnes declared a Climate & Ecological Emergency in Dec 2018. Meets monthly to develop local plan to help Totnes become carbon neutral. Please come along - share knowledge, provide support. Green Travel Steering Group also meets monthly to focus on initiatives to reduce our carbon emissions from travel.

Example projects

  • tree planting across Totnes incl initiative to Plant the Parish Boundary with neighbouring parishes - network of wildlife corridors
  • off road cycle routes: Totnes with Stoke Gabriel (and then to Paignton); Totnes to Littlehempston (and then to Newton Abbot); support an ever-widening network such as Dartington to Staverton cycle path
  • working with Transition Town Totnes to relaunch Transition Streets
  • air quality monitoring
  • developing local portal "Our Place Our Planet" to help residents take steps to reduce their carbon footprint

Transition Town Totnes

Website: www.transitiontowntotnes.org
Facebook: www.facebook.com/TransitionTownTotnes

Transition Town Totnes is a grassroots charity which seeks to increase our community’s resilience to the big environmental challenges of our time. This includes building a strong, green local economy; strengthening local food systems; working with the community to reduce carbon emissions; and promoting inner resilience in response to global crises.

Please see our website for current projects.


An alliance of parishes surrounding Ivybridge

PL:21 is a registered CIO that brings residents together to help make Ivybridge and surrounding area a more sustainable place to live and work.

Website: www.pl21.weebly.com

Contact:  Caroline Lucas

PL:21 is made up of local residents with a wide range of interests and skills. If you have an idea to help make the area more environmentally friendly or to encourage sustainable behaviour please get involved and we'll try to help you make it happen.

Other groups in this area

Sustainable Dartmouth

(incl Dartmouth Area For Future Sustainability - DAFFS)
Contact: Sune Nightingale – email
Website: daffs.org

A group of concerned residents from the Dartmouth Cluster of communities recently launched Sustainable Dartmouth, a project aimed at increasing awareness amongst residents, local Councils, businesses and other organizations, of the vital importance of environmental issues.

Apart from learning what we can do personally to help the natural world, we have launched a website forum, responded to the Dartmouth Neighbourhood Development Consultation, linked up with existing sustainability groups within the Dartmouth Cluster and we are developing publicity material for distribution to local organizations, businesses and individuals.

We meet fortnightly with Zoom, and new members are very welcome.  Email Sune to join the Zoom.

Rattery EAG

Rattery Environment Advisory Group & Rattery Environment Group

Contact: Kim Howard (for both groups)

  • Rattery Parish Council has declared a Climate and Environment Emergency.
  • We have an Environment Advisory Group, which works closely with a charity (the Rattery Environment Group) to improve biodiversity and access to open spaces. We have successfully opened a new permissive path, with new & renewed hedging in the village.
  • We also have a ‘Resilient Rattery’ Advisory Group, which has held a public meeting which supported the actions in the Parish Plan being updated to reflect the Emergency declaration.

Unfortunately, Covid-19 has halted further actions to date. As a very small village, there is a limit to what we can do, so it would be great to join in actions with others. We are already linked with Sustainable South Brent.


Kingsbridge Town Council declared a Climate and Nature Emergency in March 2020, going on to approve a 10 point CANE Action Plan in June 2020 covering:

  1. Low Carbon energy use by the Council (largely done)
  2. Building on Kingsbridge in Bloom work with a further focus on wild flower areas and insect life (in hand)
  3. Working with SHDC to require leading low carbon approaches in housing projects
  4. Promoting, and providing facilities for EV use - cars, bikes and buses (in hand)
  5. Pushing for town wide roof-top solar starting with the largest roofs (attempted so far with Tesco - unsuccessfully)
  6. Hosting a Climate Market
  7. Identifying and delivering on the town’s tree-planting potential (working on)
  8. Tackling fuel poverty through a carbon offset fund (in hand)
  9. Promoting climate action eg through promoting businesses that have taken action
  10. Support Carbon action through community art

Sustainable Kingswear

Website: coming soon...


Mags Bickley and Caroline Pymm

Bigbury Net Zero

Website: www.bigburynetzero.org
Facebook: www.facebook.com/bigburynetzero
Instagram: www.instagram.com/bigburynetzero
Mail Chimp: Bigbury Drums www.bigburynews.com
Contact: Secretary Louise Wainwright

Working with local businesses and individuals in Bigbury and nearby parishes to inform, identify, promote and support practical projects which aim to reduce our community’s carbon footprint.
Creating project-focussed WhatsApp groups: BNZ Community Compost; BNZ Renewable Energy; BNZ Shop Local; BNZ Biodiversity Invitation links on request to Secretary.

Promoting carbon foot printing Carbon Savvy www.carbonsavvy.uk/calculator/ (for individuals) and Farm Carbon Toolkit www.calculator.farmcarbontoolkit.org.uk/#about-section (for farms)

Meeting point: Evert Tuesday 11.00 to midday at the Venus Cafe at Bigbury on Sea TQ7 4AZ

Sustainable Dartington

This is a new group. Details coming soon. Contact Kate Wilson, Parish Council clerk for more info: 


New Group - details coming soon. Contact Jill Munn for details: 07850 399490

Cornwood Environment Group

Website: www.cornwoodpc.co.uk/


Community Orchard.  Gill Glegg.

  • Yealm to Moor steering group. Julia Bertram  
  • Leemoor Community Wind Farm. Julia Bertram
  • Churchyard Wildflower meadow.  Rodney Ford.  
  • Citizen Scientist lead for water quality on the river Yealm

Formed following parish council declaration of a climate emergency in 2019 with a goal of net zero carbon by 2030 and in addition to our statutory duty under the NERC2006 Act.

Example projects:

  • Quiet Lane status for walkers, cyclists and horse riders between Cornwood and Harford – ongoing collaboration between Cornwood and Harford.
  • info and support for more wildflower meadows.  Church - ongoing
  • Butterfly Garden Cornwood Square - ongoing
  • Help for people on benefits with Devon Energy Collective
  • River water quality monitoring – Citizen Scientists with Westcountry Rivers Trust
  • Member of the RYWQG (River Yealm Water Quality Group)
  • Locally sourced food campaign – Village shop.