Monthly Archives: January 2020

Minutes of 7th January 2020


Micklefield Library, Micklefield Road

Those present

Mike King
Jhon Munoz
Sarah Moroz
Tony Thornby
Sheena King
Ivan Cicin-Sain – Wycombe Friends of the Earth
Steve Morton – Wycombe Friends of the Earth “
Angus Massie
Bob Smith

Air raid cafe seems to be still open.

MK – also went to the Coffee Lounge. Although they don’t have the Fairtrade logo, their coffee is ethically sourced. MK spoke to the manager.

The FT renewal certificate was shown round. MK will put it in a photo frame ready for the presentation event.

TT – Wycombe District Council will be dissolving in April.

MK – Matt Knight thinks that there will be a Town Council for Wycombe. MK met Trevor Snaith in the Coffee Lounge and he thought the same.

I C-S – Wyc FOE are trying to launch a climate action group.

St M – Nationally FOE has a climate action group which feeds into government and includes individuals who are not FOE members.

I C-S – Wyc FOE are trying to form an alliance of individuals/groups to campaign for action on climate change.

St M – there is a Facebook group also working on this. Next Tuesday there is a group launching in Aylesbury to lobby the new county authority re: the climate emergency.

MK – suggests that Wycombe for Fairtrade could be involved in this joint effort. Everyone voted for this.

JM – Costa Rica are taking practical action to tackle climate change

MK – the all-party committee for Central America haven’t met for many months. During the meeting with the Costa Rican ambassador the possibility of forming a committee for Costa Rica on its own was discussed.

MK/JM would both like to go to the Wyc FOE meeting next Thursday evening to discuss the joint group on climate change.

St M – the more people involved, the more leverage there would be with local government.

TT – a company is producing bricks from recycled material – prevents a lot going to landfill. There is also a company who are working on an electric aeroplane fleet.

MK – Bucks New Uni have plans for their volunteers week. Handing out FT bananas and ‘Smile Week’. They are also arranging to have a speaker from Bewleys. They have about 125 students they can call on in the Sustainability etc group

JM – it was a very useful meeting with Costa Rican ambassador. He wanted to talk about a wide range of topics involving environmental action in Costa Rica in general. He was also talking about engaging with local politicians and about setting up an all-party parliamentary group for Costa Rica.

MK – It would be really good if the ambassador could meet with the new Wycombe Town Council. The ambassador was very interested in what we have done with the linking model. He said that there is lots of potential for increasing trade with Costa Rica. He suggested targeting new Tory MPs in northern seats. The meeting lasted about 3 hours.

JM – the ambassador came from the Grecia area and knew the mayor and Co-op Victoria.

MK – re: FT Fortnight. JM and TT are willing to go on Wyc Sound radio with MK.

The presentation event is on Jan 21st. MK will do a shortened version of his climate presentation. It would be a good opportunity to get signatures on a document to support the idea of a partnership between the Grecia and Wycombe. There will be refreshments after the presentation and before the rest of the council meeting.

The churches/faith groups think-tank on FT is booked for 7th March. MK showed a poster. 3 speakers are arranged – Margaret Dykes, Angorad Hopkinson (the head person for faith and churches at the FT Foundation) and Mike (the effect of climate change on FT). Heather will lead a FT service at the end. Heather has lots of links with local churches. It may also be possible for Maranda St John Nicholle to be there (Christian Concern for One World).

TT – on the poster for this event, please can people be encouraged to join our Facebook group – also at the event itself.

MK – our website is looking really good, many thanks to TT

TT – need to get better at reporting on what we have done.

BS – the Avenue church is now up and running again, following the repairs.

SM – re: if other faith groups are also being invited, we may need to make the poster inclusive of them.

MK – re: the John Hampden Politicon event 6 – 8.30pm on 13th Feb. We will have a stall there.

MK – showed a proposed poster for use at events to promote ourselves – showing how we are campaigning on the 5 goals for a FT Town. Suggested it is printed on display board (foam inner) on A2 size. We would have to get a company to do this.

TT – has links with companies who could do this.

TT – the most recent work he has done is to bring our website up to date. We need to be more proactive in advertising events. If we set up a Facebook group then we can send invites to everyone in the group.

JM – we need to find ways of increasing our income. A lady from the Bristol FT group said they are a CIC (Community Interest Company) legal entity – can then get funding from businesses and government eg DFID. JM suggested we may be able to do something similar.

St M – Wycombe FOE get income from membership fees. It may be worth talking to James MacDonald (Friends of the Wye) to see where they get their funding from.

SK – there will be Traidcraft stall at the churches event on 7th March and at Christ the Servant King church the next day.

TT – has spoken to his church, Kings Church, about becoming a FT church – they use Kingdom Coffee but don’t seem to know that it is FT.

Next meeting: 11th February at Ivan’s at 8pm

Costa Rican Ambassador to the UK visit to High Wycombe Tuesday 21st January 2020

Following on from a speculative email and an invitation to the Costa Rican Embassy in December 2019, Ambassador Ortiz and his wife came to High Wycombe on Tuesday 21st January 2020 to present the High Wycombe Fairtrade Foundation Town Renewal Certificate November 2019 – Nov 2021 to the Mayor of High Wycombe, Councillor Mazamal Hussain, during the Wycombe Charter Town Trustees Executive meeting.

During an agenda item, Ambassador Rafael Ortiz addressed the Charter Trustee Executives in the Council Chamber, stating his wholehearted support for the principles of the Fairtrade movement in general. Fairtrade was directly responsible for over 20% of Costa Rica’s national income. He also praised the work of the High Wycombe For Fairtrade Steering Group in particular, focusing on developing and promoting a spirit of cooperation, friendship, and establishing a working relationship with the Fair Trade Town of Grecia in north-central Costa Rica, in addition to linking with the neighbouring and largest Fair Trade organic coffee and sugar producer, CoopeVictoria. This cooperative group has over 3000 farmers who benefit directly from Fairtrade’s guaranteed coffee prices and income, utilize sustainable and organic farming practices, have excellent green renewable energy credentials, and invest their Fairtrade premium back into their businesses as well as fund community projects such a building a new school for migrant worker’s children and funding classroom teachers.

During an interval in the meeting in the Mayor’s Parlour, Ambassador Ortiz presented the Fairtrade Foundation Town Renewal Certificate to the Mayor of High Wycombe. There was a reporter and photographer from the Bucks free Press, as well as many other photo opportunities with the Deputy Mayor of High Wycombe, Matt Knight and members of the Wycombe Fairtrade Steering Group shaking hands with the Ambassador and his wife. The Costa Rican Ambassador was invited to sit in the historical Mayoral Weighing Chair, where the “Wycombe is a Fairtrade Town” banner provided an effective back-drop.  This very exciting, sociable and mutually rewarding evening celebration was enhanced by sampling various types of Fairtrade wine, soft drinks and snacks in the Mayor’s Parlour.

One of our Steering Group members then escorted the Ambassador and his wife to the station to catch their return train to London.

Mike King,

Chairman, Wycombe Fairtrade.

Minutes of 12th November 2019


Micklefield Library, Micklefield Road

Those Present

  • Mike King
  • Ivan Cicin-Sain – Wycombe Friends of the Earth
  • Sheena King
  • Angus Massie
  • Daniel & Claudia Mangoldt
  • Sarah Moroz
  • Eryn Anderson – Bucks New Uni
  • Jhon Munoz
  • Bob Smith


CM – has just arrived recently in UK from Spain

DM – always interested in FT, not had opportunity to pursue it before.

JM invited C /D

EA – current ambassador for FT from BNU – took over from Emily Dixie

Apologies from TT – he will be putting more on website for us.

MK – attended Population Matters event on 12th October

MK – Cardiff International FT conference was the best conference they’d ever attended

I C-S – 12th October event was at Trinity URC. There was a good stand-up comedian and a variety of stalls – Extinction Rebellion group from Marlow, WFF, and various environmental groups – made £100 profit and 80 people attended.

Future events – Population Matters AGM on 18th Nov at Ivan’s house. Wyc FOE Christmas meeting on 4th Dec at Friends Meeting House

A new warning from scientists has come out this month – 11,000 scientists have signed it – it calls on governments to take urgent action to tackle the climate crisis including ending and reversing population growth.

AM – is starting to make progress in accumulating contact details for churches in Wycombe re: assessing FT situation.

SK – has asked Christ the Servant King church if they can apply to be a FT church. Their administrator is very supportive. SK will be their contact.

MK – has been invited to the BNU Environment, Sustainability & FT Committee.

EA – at the moment they are organising a FT breakfast meeting – inviting local FT businesses eg. Ruby Moon and focussing also on green issues. Hopefully they will have speakers at it as well. It will be just before FT Fortnight in volunteers week

JM – it would be good to have some students come to our meetings.

EA – if there is sufficient warning / advertising then support could be good.

MK – re: the Cardiff conference / visit of Maria. Maria was invited by ourselves plus mayor/deputy mayor. She was also representing the mayor of Grecia.

There was a meeting in the mayor’s parlour. Next stage is to have a formal agreement for the linkage.

One problem is the dissolving of the Wycombe District Council. There was an online questionnaire re: this. If there was a town council just for Wycombe, it would be easier for us to deal with. Matt is going to check the wording of the twinning agreement with Klekheim. The powers of the mayor in Grecia are greater. MK, JM and Maria also had a meeting with Bewleys on 17th October. Maria gave background of what they are trying to do. They also visited Matt’s cafe and Maria was very impressed. At a school in Costa Rica, children bring in used vegetable oil which is then purified and mixed with diesel to power tractors and local lorries. The whole of Costa Rica is due to be using renewables by 2025. They have a lot of migrant workers they pay fairly. Bewleys are roasting some of the beans from Co-op Vittoria with a view to producing a speciality coffee with Wycombe/Grecia names on. The town of Haworth in Yorkshire has done something similar ( has a report in its October 2019 edition). They also went to Ruby Moon, Air Raid cafe and various other shops in Wycombe.

AM – Has heard that Air Raid cafe will be going soon – it is a pop-up – will be replaced.

MK – Bart from the Oxford group complimented us at the Cardiff conference for our achievements. Possible that we may do a joint event with them.

MK – showed the papercopy of the powerpoint presentation that he gave at the Population Matters event on 12th October.

MK – would be good to have a social to celebrate our 5 year anniversary and our renewal. We have achieved a lot in the last 18 months. Also MK/SK hope to visit Costa Rica.

JM – re: workshop at the Cardiff conference . Talked about how we built the link with Costa Rica. He showed a printout of the slides they used. They also showed a video from the mayor of Grecia – it is now on Facebook. Matt also spoke. Matt and Maria announced the friendship link at the end of the conference. Matt was the only mayor there (apart from the mayor of Cardiff). There was also a stall promoting the Co-op Vittoria products etc

SK – showed the programme for the conference

MK – Cardiff was the first FT capital and Wales the first FT nation. There was also a FT church service.

SK – there were a lot of stalls – one of them was Bala balls. Perhaps we could get Wycombe Wanderers to use FT balls, even if only for their practice sessions.

MK – for the Cardiff government everything has to be FT, local or healthy.

MK – also visited a FT primary school and attended their assembly. Children were enthusiastic.

SK – attended a workshop re: the UN working with refugees to make handicrafts to sell as FT – she took a leaflet about it to Ruby Moon.

SK – they were also selling FT T-shirts

EA – at the moment the university are trying to find a supplier for FT T-shirts.

SK – gave EA a leaflet re: possible suppliers

MK – SK/MK ran a stall at CSK last Sunday. They took about £600. They also sold some of the produce given by Bewleys. Nero Bianco chocolate bars sold well. This added £20 to our bank acct – now stands at £155.

JM – it would be good to discuss possible fundraising ideas.

MK – would like to speak to Louise Whitaker about this as well

MK – asked re: Mayor’s carol service

BS – thinks it is the 15th December.

SM – will ask Matt.

SM – is planning to send schools questionnaire out – to primary only? But the possible language student etc links with Grecia schools would be more suited to secondary schools.

FT Fortnight next year seems to be concentrating on chocolate.

MK – re: presentation of our renewal certificate – would be good if we could get the Costa Rican ambassador to present it to the Chairman of WDC? Tony Green is also the chair of the Twinning Ctte.

JM – we can ask Matt’s opinion.

SM – maybe present it to the mayor instead?

MK – also doesn’t want to use the term ‘twinning’ – more a ‘Partnership’.

EA – their event would be on a weekday (Wednesday?) morning. Would be inviting lecturers as well as students.

MK – Heather is the new lay minister at CSK. She has suggested that it would be a good idea to have a workshop looking at FT churches. CSK would host the event – during FT Fortnight on a Saturday morning – inviting all the churches in Wycombe – have speakers eg. Margaret Dykes. MK could do the climate change talk. Could discuss how to involve young people at the churches. Could finish with a short service. Also to include other faiths and denominations.
We need to compile the info on Wycombe churches for our next FT Town renewal application.

JM – for FT Fortnight we could do another interview on Wycombe Sound, promote things on our Facebook page. Following the Cardiff conference our Facebook followers increased significantly. Also perhaps organise a talk to let people in Wycombe know about the linkage with Costa Rica.
EA – could use the ‘Front Room’ as a venue. This could be a ‘drop-in’ event, open throughout the day with speakers at different times during the day.

MK – also need to arrange a meeting with the Costa Rican embassy

I C-S – Wyc FOE and Pop’n Matters are taking part in an event (Politicon) at John Hampden school on Thursday 13th February to introduce 6th formers to various groups.

MK – will make contact to see if we can also have a stall.

Next meeting: 7th January at Micklefield Library (if Avenue not