Author Archives: Paul Williams

Online Survey to speak your mind on Paris

Keep Scotland Beautiful is offering the people of Scotland the chance to get their voices heard in the run up to the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris.

As you may already know through all the activity around our Climate Justice Baton Relay, the 21st United Nations Climate Change Conference runs from November 30th to December 11th 2015. It is a crucial conference, as it needs to achieve a new international agreement, applicable to all countries, with the aim of keeping global warming below 2°C.

Keep Scotland Beautiful is running an online consultation survey to find out what the people of Scotland think about the issues on the table at the Paris negotiations. As part of this, eco-congregations throughout Scotland are invited to participate in this consultation. The results from this consultation will be collated and submitted to the Scottish Government to inform the delegation of ministers and civil servants attending the negotiations.

Take part in the consultation survey online at

You can learn more about the consultation and the United Nations Climate Change Conference through the KSB  Road to Paris webpages  and newsletter

Keep Scotland Beautiful plays an important role in influencing and enabling action on climate change. This includes work with people, places and policy through areas including collaboration with Government and the public sector, communities and voluntary sector organisations, businesses and young people. They see it as part of their work to make Scotland clean, green and more sustainable.


Stewardship of Creation Season at Skene Parish

September has been a very busy month for Skene Parish. The month began with Communion at both Churches on the 6th and 13th. Small candles in jars, made completely from recycled materials were handed out to the congregation at the Communion Services at Skene and Trinity Churches at the start of the Stewardship of Creation Season.  These were all made and packaged by the Eco Group.  The themes for these two Sundays were The Creator Inspires and The Creation Inspires.

award presentation


On the 19th September the church joined with the Action Group to hold a Coffee Morning and Eco Group Display.  Both were most successful.  At this event, Sheila Gray was presented, by Councillor Iris Walker, with Skene Parish Church’s Third Eco Award.  The Congregation has worked very hard to achieve this status and are indeed only the eighth church in Scotland to receive this award. They are very excited about moving on to the Continuing Award and looking towards a new project in which to be involved.



At this event, the church had the launch of the very exciting new community project – The Skene Community Garden Project.  Over 70 attended the presentation and many there, pledged their support.

The next day, a Onesie Sunday was held.  Members of the congregation and the children wore their Onsies to Church to show support of our Mission Partners in Malawi and to raise funds for the work they do at the Nkhoma Hospital.  As part of the Eco Congregation Initiative,  the theme was The Stewards Care.

As the last event in the Stewardship Month, the Eco Congregation Scotland Climate Change Baton came to Skene.  Arriving from Lerwick in Shetland, the baton was carried round Skene Church in the morning at the Harvest Thanksgiving Service. It was then cared for by members of Jigsaw and they brought it to Messy Harvest at Trinity Church in the afternoon where the children and their parents formed a human chain around the building, passing the baton from one to another.  The baton was then sent on its way around Scotland, this time to Mauchline Church in East Ayrshire.  The theme for this service was All Creatures Great and Small.


Baton goes on a trip round Westhill with Malia and Poppy.

The church is now gathering photographs of creation from the congregation to shortlist to 12 for their WOW Factor Calendar 2016. This is a great way to end their Stewardship Season with something to remind them throughout next year about God’s amazing creation.







Baton pilgrimage in Hungary #cop21baton

If you’ve been following the Eco-congregation baton as it has traveled around Scotland, you might be interested to see what our partners in Hungary have been up to.

A pilgrimage of cyclists have been carrying a transparent baton from east to west where they have been meeting communities, making friends and sharing their vision for COP21 along the way.

You can read about the beginning of their journey here


At each stop the pilgrims symbolically put a handful of soil into the clear, thin baton before continuing on. Naturally their final destination will be the UN Climate Change Conference in Paris later this year.



baton on track to Tweedbank



melrosetrainbatonA trip on the newly opened border’s railway brought the baton bearer to Tweedbank Station where it was greeted by members of the transition network, ‘Greener Melrose‘. Environmental Chaplain, Trevor Jamieson, continued with the baton to St Cuthbert’s Roman Catholic Church, Melrose Parish Church, and Holy Trinity Scottish Episcopal Church.