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Get a free bicycle MOT

BikefestBike looking a bit rusty? Brakes squeaking at the lights and gears making more noise than a Harley Davidson? Get your bike down to the BikeFest on Sun 12th June in Trafalgar Square - they're offering free cycle health checks to everyone. You can also learn how to do puncture repairs - an essential for any city cyclist -  plus trial a multitude of cycles and check out the games, cycle art (poems, paintings) and fashion show. BikeFest kicks off BikeWeek, which is organising 2,000 local events across the UK between the 11th and 19th June.

May 31, 2005 in Transport & travel | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

The wind-up remote

RemoteThis isn't a wind-up - someone really has created a remote control that you charge by cranking. There's not a great deal to say except that it's called the Clone RC 601, it's a universal remote - i.e. it can learn and replace your existing remote controls - and it apparently only needs a crank once a week. This battery-free wonder's available for £20 from AV It All.

May 29, 2005 in Green gadgets | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

World's cutest composter?

Rolypig_2My cynical side wants to say a polka-dotted, pig-shaped composting bin deserves derision. But try as I might, I can't stop myself liking the fabulous Rolypig composter. The big idea - zany design aside - is that you don't need to stick a fork or shovel in the compost every few days. New waste is added via our kid Roly's snout, after which you rotate him, forcing the material through his 4 internal compartments. Eventually your plant-friendly mulch appears from - you guessed it - his 'bottom'. Rolypig's meant to be on sale sometime this year; he'll cost £170 and come delivered flat-packed. [found via Weekend Magazine in The Guardian]


Update:
you'll be able to buy a green, orange or pink Rolypig from the end of June in the UK. He's also expected to go on sale soon in the US.

May 29, 2005 in Food & drink, Plants & gardens, Recycling | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Travel green, win prizes!

RidgebackNow there's an added bonus to living in the west country - as well as getting the best cider, you can win prizes just by travelling green. Next month's officially been declared Jam Busting June by the councils of Bath & North East Somerset, Bristol City, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire. To take part and win prizes, all you have to do is live in one of those areas and cycle, commute by public transport or carshare instead of driving solo. Prizes include a £395 bike, spa vouchers, free bus passes and a ticket to Bristol Zoo (check out the Red Pandas). The councils aren't quite so online-savvy - you have to call 0117 903 6673 for a registration pack to take part. [found via BBC News]

May 28, 2005 in Transport & travel | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Ethi-scoring

Ethiscore2Contemplating buying a Moto RAZR this weekend? Maybe you should be looking at a Sagem MY-X8 if ethical investigation site Ethiscore's anything to go by. Today it's ranked the most ethical mobile phone manufacturers - and Sagem's second best with a 9 out of 20 rating to Motorola's 7.5. Top of the pile is Alcatel, which makes cruddy handsets but scores 10.5 on a range of criteria including staff welfare, eco-awareness, links with the military and involvement with oppressive regimes. Siemens comes bottom, scoring a measly 6. Mobile phones are just one of Ethiscore's 15 free reports into product areas including chocolate, trainers, fridges and more. The reports are provided by the long-standing and tres credible Ethical Consumer magazine. [thanks, Ben H]

May 28, 2005 in Green gadgets, Utilities, services & misc | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Belting recycled bits & bobs

Ting2Praise be for ingenious designers. This cracking place mat and coaster aren't made from ridiculously expensive Japanese fabrics imported from the other side of the world - they're hand-crafted from recycled leather belts. It's just one of a whole range of accessories made by Ting, expert at recycling vintage belts and seatbelt fabrics into stuff you'd actually want to buy. As well as place mats, it makes new belts, bags, wallets and cushions. You can order a selection of it via Ting's website  or buy a whole lot in person from Liberty in London. [read in Project Magazine]

May 26, 2005 in Design & furniture, Recycling | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Juice (and how to recycle it)

Grovefresh3Where would we be without Grove Fresh, purveyor of the best and most widely available organic juices in the realm? In a realm with lots of inferior non-organic juices and a few hard-to-find organic brands, that's where. So a warm welcome please to Grove's newest addition: ruby orange. It's a fair bit tarter than the normal OJ but works a treat for forcing those eyelids open in the morning. You can buy it for around £2-odd in supermarkets, health food shops and most  food shops worth their (organic) salt. Once you've drained the carton dry, be ultra altruistic and post it off for recycling via the lables and instructions here (PDF).

May 26, 2005 in Food & drink, Recycling | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Harry Potter goes eco

HarrypotterUnless you're a muggle refusenik, statistics show you're going to buy the new Harry Potter book regardless of what I say. But there's now an added reason for finding out whether Harry and Hermione will get it on - the book will be one of the first big titles to be published on 30% Forest Stewardship Council-certified paper. That  means paper from a wood that's being responsibly-managed in a sustainable, green fashion. The move by the book's publisher, Bloomsbury, should put some pressure on other publishers to follow suit. Potter nuts can count down the days to The Half-Blood Prince here, read gossip here and visit JK Rowling's official site here. [found via Phatgnat]

May 25, 2005 in Arts & information, Recycling | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Organic beer nirvana

Shop_inside_300If ever two words deserved to live next door to one another, it was beer and organic. The nation's supermarkets haven't cottoned on yet, however, which is why I thank the hop Gods for The Beer Shop, an award-winning real ale brewery and shop just off Old Street in east London. It's an organic foodie and CAMRA member's wet dream. The shop sells 40 different varieties of organic beer, 14 of which are brewed on site and bottled up as Eco Warrior, Shoreditch Stout, Hoxton Best and more. Most of the 500ml bottles are reasonably priced at around £2. You can get them delivered for free if you live within the M25 or pay £8 to get 24 bottles delivered to anywhere in the UK. Orders are via phone or email from here. If I can persuade the good folks at The Beer Shop to provide me with some 'test samples', I'll bring you a review soon. [thanks, William G]

May 25, 2005 in Food & drink | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Gorgeous organic vintage

Enamore_1If you're constantly sniffing around charity shops, warehouse shows and trendy markets in the hunt for vintage clothes, call off the search - I've found the perfect home for you. It's a label called Enamore, and it uses recycled materials and eco-friendly materials to make girly vintage outfits such as the unique skirt on the left. This one's for skinny girls only - it's size 6-8 - and the price tag is a meaty £110 but it looks superb and is lined with a hemp/ramie (China grass) fabric. Enamore also has a fine selection of floaty dresses, figure-hugging tops, showy dresses and a couple of cool coats for sale on its website. Plus you can buy from stockists (again, listed on Enamore's site) in Somerset, Belfast, Newquay and Brighton.                                                                                                                  

May 24, 2005 in Fashion & accessories, Recycling | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack