orchid bright pink with books

We have set a BOOK CLUB – we focus on reading books that relate to the climate and ecological crisis. The meetings will continue to be held on zoom at the moment.

Day: Thursdays (usually every 3/4 weeks)

Time: 7pm – 8.30pm OR 7.30pm – 9pm.

You will be able to join the chat on a phone too – either a landline or a mobile. 

For details you can contact us on the  ‘Contact Us’ tab or join the WhatsApp group (XR H&F Book Club / Reading Group) by following this link:

Details of how to join the actual meeting will be posted on WhatsApp.

Next Meeting: Thursday 16th July 2020.


rob hopkins

On the 16th July we will discuss the book by Rob Hopkins – ‘From what is to what if: Unleashing the power of imagination to create the future we want’

In these times of deep division and deeper despair, if there is a consensus about anything in the world, it is that the future is going to be awful.  Catastrophic climate change. Biodiversity loss. Food insecurity. The fracturing of ecosystems and communities beyond, it seems, repair. The future to say nothing of the present looks grim.

But as Transition movement cofounder Rob Hopkins tells us, there is plenty of evidence that things can change, and cultures can change, rapidly, dramatically, and unexpectedly for the better. 

We do have the capability to effect dramatic change, Hopkins argues, but we re failing because we largely allowed our most critical tool to languish: human imagination. As defined by social reformer John Dewey, imagination is the ability to look at things as if they could be otherwise. The ability, that is, to ask What if? And if there was ever a time when we needed that ability, it is now.

From What Is to What If is a call to action to reclaim and unleash our collective imagination, told through the stories of individuals and communities around the world who are doing it now, as we speak, and witnessing often rapid and dramatic change for the better.

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On 4th June we discussed the book ‘The Future WE Choose’ by Christiana Figueres and Tom Rivet-Carnac 

Climate change: it is arguably the most urgent and consequential issue humankind has ever faced. How we address it in the next thirty years will determine the kind of world we will live in and will bequeath to our children and to theirs.

In The Future We Choose, Christiana Figueres and Tom Rivett-Carnac–who led negotiations for the United Nations during the historic Paris Agreement of 2015–have written a cautionary but optimistic book about the world’s changing climate and the fate of humanity.The authors outline two possible scenarios for our planet. In one, they describe what life on Earth will be like by 2050 if we fail to meet the Paris climate targets. In the other, they lay out what it will be like to live in a carbon neutral, regenerative world. They argue for confronting the climate crisis head-on, with determination and optimism. The Future We Choose presents our options and tells us what governments, corporations, and each of us can and must do to fend off disaster.

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For May, our book of the month is  DOUGHNUT ECONOMICS by KATE RAWORTH.

Economics is broken. It has failed to predict, let alone prevent, financial crises that have shaken the foundations of our societies. Its outdated theories have permitted a world in which extreme poverty persists while the wealth of the super-rich grows year on year. And its blind spots have led to policies that are degrading the living world on a scale that threatens all of our futures.

Can it be fixed? In Doughnut Economics, Oxford academic Kate Raworth identifies seven critical ways in which mainstream economics has led us astray, and sets out a roadmap for bringing humanity into a sweet spot that meets the needs of all within the means of the planet. En route, she deconstructs the character of ‘rational economic man’ and explains what really makes us tick. She reveals how an obsession with equilibrium has left economists helpless when facing the boom and bust of the real-world economy. She highlights the dangers of ignoring the role of energy and nature’s resources – and the far-reaching implications for economic growth when we take them into account. And in the process, she creates a new, cutting-edge economic model that is fit for the 21st century – one in which a doughnut-shaped compass points the way to human progress.

Discussion featuring Kate Raworth (Doughnut Economics), Dr Gail Bradbrook (co-founder of XR), Paddy Loughman (Independent Strategist, working with Wellbeing Economy Alliance and Green Economy Coalition), Kofi Mawali Klu (global justice activist) and Aaron Thierry (facilitator), please click HERE


For April, our book of the month is  WILDING by ISABELLA TREE .

Forced to accept that intensive farming of the heavy clay soils of their farm at Knepp in West Sussex was driving it close to bankruptcy, in 2000 Isabella Tree and her husband Charlie Burrell took a spectacular leap of faith and handed their 3500 acres back to nature. With minimal human intervention, and with herds of free-roaming animals stimulating new habitats, their land is now heaving with life. Rare species such as turtle doves, peregrine falcons and purple emperor butterflies are now breeding at Knepp and biodiversity has rocketed.

growth delusion

For March, our book of the month was THE GROWTH DELUSION by DAVID PILLING.

According to the economy, we have never been wealthier or happier. So why doesn’t it feel that way? The Growth Delusion explores how we prioritise growth maximisation without stopping to think about the costs. So much of what is important to our well-being, from safe streets to sound minds, lies outside the purview of statistics. In a book that is both thought-provoking and entertaining, David Pilling argues that our steadfast loyalty to growth is informing misguided policies, and proposes different criteria for measuring our success.