People from Winchester District are getting together over coffee and pastries to discuss perhaps the biggest taboo subject of our time: climate change. At the Climate Cafe in St Lawrence's parish hall, Colebrook Street on July 6 starting at 10am, Winchester residents have a chance to share their fears and hopes about the changing climate and look at ways they can make a difference.

The issues surrounding global warming and climate change are confusing,frightening or depressing to many, leaving people feeling unwilling to talk and struggling to understand how they can tackle their own carbon footprint.

The cafe, which offers free fresh coffee and pastries, is part of the Cool Communities project being piloted by Winchester Action on Climate Change. This successful programme, from the United States and Australia, helps communities work together to combat climate change by providing easy ways to save energy which in turn will lead to lower greenhouse emissions.

"The idea is to give people an opportunity to voice how they feel about the global situation which is not something people feel able to do normally" says James MartinJones, the project sponsor, "The cafe will be a friendly supportive environment where people are able to ask questions and say how they really feel."

The Cool Communities programme will launch in September with 100 households taking part in this unique pilot scheme. Central to the project is the Low Carbon Diet, a practical handbook written by David Gershon and updated for the UK by WinACC. If anyone is interested in attending the cafe or taking part in the pilot, contact WinACC on 01962 827083 or visit the website at