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Pam’s Summer!!

By Sarah Ward

So what the heck has the worst blogger in the universe been up to in the past few weeks? Loads of dead good stuff as we say in Todmorden.

Wherever I go people are incredible!

And the more I speak to folks and understand what they are up to the more obvious it is that we need a better way of sharing our stories and experiences so we can get on faster and not reinvent wheels.

Went on holiday for a few days to Bologna in the north of Italy. 38 degrees! Just wandering around the back streets when I come across this, built by students and funded by Europe. Now apart from the fact you wonder why in a brilliant city like Bologna they needed European money to get the job done, this was obviously a great example of food bringing people together to create a great space and grow herbs and more than that, living herbs, i.e. watered herbs i.e.herbs that people care enough about to water. A Rose by any other name is still incredible.

Came back to a walk around Bristol with Sodexo Ltd, a major international service provider and Sara Venn to look at a hospital they manage and show them the wonders of IEBristol.

The Bear Pit was the highlight of the IE tour and a credit to the talents and vision of the Bristol IE group.

Coming back to the hospital, you know, whether it’s private public or third sector, it’s always people who make the difference and the folks at the Nuffield in Bristol are fantastic and so up for being an edible hospital site.  And talking of edible hospital sites, things are going from strength to strength in Calderdale with the work of the Incredible Aquagarden.

Now we have three health centres and a hospital site where food is growing and communities are cooking.  And to drive that message home, good local food is the path to better health, Dr. Ruby Audjl of the Doctors Kitchen is performing, it’s the only word for it, at the Aquagarden in Todmorden on September 23rd where he will be cooking up all the good food we grow there and aiming his message around food and nutrition straight at the medical profession to help them help us get more people growing, cooking and being Incredible.

Had the pleasure of telling our stories in Preston yesterday along with Dr Charlie Clutterbuck speaking on Brexit, no comment from me on that one!,and the chance this offers us to support the case for local food availability. It’s heady stuff but I feel a great fight coming on.

Remember our vision of Incredible North? Well it was right there, alive and well in my that room.  Growing Middlesbrough, amazing work in the NE where partners are getting it together to bring good food to everyone’s table. Public sector ,universities, and communities buying local, supporting local markets, tackling food waste, just putting in place a system that means it’s normal for good food to be seen as a right for all.

Then Manchester Veg people and their story of bringing producers and suppliers together around Manchester to rethink our relationship with food and how it gets to our plate. Warts and all were shared, but that’s the point. Sharing stories and experiences.

So it seemed to me that that was the whole point of Incredible North. Joining the dots.

Telling the stories. Nicking great ideas and sharing others. Put Sodexo and the private sector in there, add a dash of Wigan and a council thinking about a different tomorrow and stir in the Incredible Edible network of people demonstrating a kinder future in the places they call home and watch it fly.