SUSD has been involved in the All Saints Road Retail Festival in which the wide variety of local, independent retailers that our street has to offer, opened their doors to the public over the course of Friday 21st and Saturday 22nd June. The festival included a whole host of different events and activities varying from Music Performances to a Rum Tasting and even Pony Rides for children.
SUSD has worked to produce an installation related to ideas of sustainability and reuse within the urban environment, as well as an architectural consultation about contemporary sustainable development. The installation included the use of coffee grinds from various retailers along All Saints Roads to grow oyster mushrooms, a vertical garden for growing strawberries and tomatoes made from recycled water cups from the Street’s Health Centre as well as the use of excess materials such as plywood, plastic tubs and plasterboard from our own development at the United Reformed Church in Bayswater. The aim of this installation was to show how complex, technological solutions are not always the best way of achieving sustainability. What is really necessary to achieve a shift towards a more sustainable future is a change in our own values and understanding of waste as well as a realisation that the large majority of what is simply throw away in the U.K. has a genuine monetary value, value that can be extracted through low-tech, cheap and relatively simple solutions.
Throughout the course of the day we will also run workshops with children, teaching them how to plant fruit and vegetables as well as educating them about waste and reuse within the city. By appealing to children at a young age maybe we can encourage a legacy of sustainability into the future?
To achieve the installation we also engaged with our community of shop owners and neighbours along All Saints Road. Contemporary society dictates that it is often possible to live as neighbours with someone for many years without even engaging with them. Efforts such as these can also be used to rekindle these local synergies that are often missing from modern high streets across theU.K.