Route To The Future 2011

By Michael Smith (Veshengro)

B&B_logo The first weekend of October 2011 (Oct 1-2) saw the first “Route to the Future” event organized by “Bricks & Bread” and staged at Loseley Park, near Guildford, in Surrey.

I managed to attend on the Sat, October 1, from rather early on, traveling to Guildford by train and then to Loseley Park on foot. Quite a hike but with the weather pleasant enough. Just made the mistake to try and walk back via another direction and then ended up taking the bus.

It was a glorious day with the sky beaming down from an almost cloudless sky and with the temperatures reaching nigh on 30C in the shade, if you could find any.

The heat may, in fact, be one of the reasons that the event did not see an serious footfall of visitors that day; at least not until about 2.30pm or so. Apparently though some more folks arrived after my departure and Sunday attendance was good, so I have been told.

“Bricks & Bread” is a sustainability center, with franchise operations, that is the brainchild of former racing driver Trudy Thompson, one of the few women in that field, and “Route to the Future” aims to become an annual event brining together local-ish eco businesses, interest groups, etc.

The fact that on the first day, in the morning and early afternoon, punters were a little thin on the ground may have been due to a couple of reasons.

The majority of people, especially in more “rural” locales, do their weekly shop on a Saturday morning to early afternoon and that could have been one of the causes. Another could have been the rather unseasonable hot weather which saw thousands flock to the seaside and the beaches.

The flu, which caused about 30 or so exhibitors to pull out at the last moment, too could have had something to do with the initial low attendance.

It was good to meet some of the exhibitors that made it to the event and also to meet again an old friend from Ecomodo.

Obviously, in spite of all advertising and all the electronic campaigns, a first of any event is a difficult step and often small. But, as they say about the mighty oak: It grows from a tiny acorn. So, onwards and upwards to a bigger event next year.

It is also the quality that could and not, necessarily, the quantity and the quality of those present certainly was good.

The “Bricks & Bread” concept, and the idea of the “Rout to the Future” events, with showcasing more-or-less local eco businesses and groups, etc., are brilliant.

© 2011