PACT: Penrith Action for Community Transition
Penrith Action for Community Transition (PACT) is an active local transition group. Over the years we have had a variety of subgroups and projects. PACT has sent delegates to the annual Transition Network conference in the UK.
Formed in 2008, PACT covers Penrith and the surrounding area in Eden District, Cumbria. Penrith has a population of over 15,000 with the total Eden District population around 55,000. PACT is registered with the Financial Conduct Authority as a Community Benefit Society and is led by a Board of Directors which meets monthly. Subgroups provide the main focus of activity on each of their topics, calling on the general membership and wider community for support. The Board of Directors brings everything together by obtaining funding, raising the organisation’s profile, establishing local networks and organising events such as film evenings and ceilidhs.
PACT’s subgroups have taken the lead in various areas such as working on Action on Plastic, Long Grass for Nature and running Repair Cafes, as well as doing regular litter-picks. There is a particularly strong Community Gardening group who enhance the town and encourage people to grow their own fruit and veg, and a Tree Group who are finding areas to plant trees locally. PACT has produced a series of films of its activities, available on YouTube, and details of all that we are doing can be seen on the PACT web site.
PACT’s strength has been to forge alliances with other groups. From local traders through to the local councils, Freegle and Newton Rigg, PACT’s network of friends has grown, providing important links, synergy and impetus to get projects going. We encouraged Eden District Council to declare a Climate emergency in 2019 and we work with representatives of Eden District and Penrith Town Council and other local groups on initiatives relating to sustainability and biodiversity. We liaise regularly with Cumbria Action for Sustainability and with a network of similar sustainability groups across Cumbria.
PACT has received funding to run various events and projects, in particular in the past grants from the Heritage Lottery Fund grant to run two big projects with local schools. PACT is currently working as one of the key partners of Zero Carbon Cumbria, a five-year Lottery-funded project running from 2021 to 2025.