Be part of an Incredible effort



Today’s blog is a pretty naked plea for support for “Incredible Edible” Todmorden.

I first heard of Incredible Edible at RE:Fest 2013; now the guys are embarking on a fundraising campaign from crowd sourcing and they need your help. And their narrative is pretty compelling stuff…

Incredible Edible Todmorden promotes the simple but radical act of growing food in public places for everyone to share. And it has been a starting point for a movement that is now spreading across the world.

A few years ago, Todmorden in Yorkshire seemed stuck in a downward spiral, just another small town blighted by economic decline. Shops and pubs were closing, the market was struggling to compete with supermarkets, house prices were falling and many people were being forced to commute to find work.  Some of the locals decided they were fed up with waiting for the powers that be to sort everything out and so they tried an experiment. They set out to see if they could bring people together around the shared language of food and from there do something that would create a stronger, kinder, greener town and a better future for their children.

Now all the schools are involved in growing and the secondary school will soon become the first in the country to have its own aquaponics centre selling fish and vegetables to the community.

There’s a market garden training centre offering apprenticeships to local youngsters, and friendships are being formed across the generations as older residents help their younger neighbours rediscover lost arts such as pickling and jam making.

Incredible Edible is good for business too: producers have been inspired to bring out new lines, like an award-winning cheese, and sausages from rare breed pigs. Market traders and restaurant owners also say they’re profiting from the Incredible Edible effect. Needless to say, I shall be feeding (ahem) all of this into the Grimsey review on the Future of our High Streets.  It is another very powerful weapon in the town centre armoury.

Author Joanna Dobson has spent many hours with Incredible Edible co-founder Pam Warhurst and many of her colleagues and fellow campaigners to chart the progress of this extraordinary phenomenon, explain why its work really matters, and show how the Incredible Edible approach can make a difference to your community. They tell the story of the amazing movement that has now become a worldwide network of people changing their communities and taking hold of their futures by growing and sharing food.

The story, told in the voice of Pam Warhurst, and has now been written. All it needs is our help to publish it and spread the word. Please visit the Kickstarter campaign and pledge your support if you like the look of it, and pass it on to anyone you know. The guys have done all of this at their own expense. I am trying to support them to ensure this unique story reaches a much wider public. And whatever you can do to help would be fantastic.

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