14 newly trained enviornmentalists. 

Last Friday, CLS hosted a training workshop at Hilfield Friary, attendees learned how to better manage energy and water use in the community buildings they managed, and got a good look at the Friary - including internal and external insulation, solar PV, solar thermal, wood chip boiler and LED bulbs.  

This is what they got out of the workshop:

  • Practical advice, learning from others.
  • Feedback and ideas form other attendees reinforced and fleshed out the talk.
  • Very well run course, and very enjoyable.  Also enjoyed the trip around the friary. Thank you.
  • Excellent, all of it was useful, trainer, training and location.  Thank you.
  • Sharing of experiences.
  • A great combination of presentation and contributions from the attendees.  Details on external wall and floor insulations were useful.
  • Networking

And this is what they intend to do:

  • More lagging, draught proofing, more LEDs.
  • Do the audit and see what is doable in a Grade 1 Building
  • Building Audit / Energy Supplier Change
  • Building audit as soon as possible.
  • Follow up contacts / online addresses.
  • Crack on with improving our village hall – plenty of ideas and inspiration from today’s workshop.
  • Try to apply / research into ways which energy consumption at village hall can be reduced.
  • Fit LED lamps at the village hall and a t home.
  • Will pass on info to others involved in community building.
  • Audit my village’s community hall.
  • Pass on info to a neighbouring village

Training and free manual to help you manage your community building. 

This manual and its associated review form will help you conduct and audit and write a reprot for your community buidling.  We are also intending to run a one day training course.

Go to the guide and review form.

If you are interested in attending this course please email Emily


Waste Less Spend Better in your Community

If you are looking for a way to support and inspire others in your community to save money and to reduce their impact on the environment, while having fun and making friends, then Waste Less Spend Better may be just what you are looking for. 

The model is based on a group of friends, neighbours or colleagues, working together through a practial manual, customised for Dorset that helps you to spend less on energy, water, food, and transport.  We'll provide the manuals free of charge and help you get started. 

Read more here

Excellent feedback on our training course and guidance!

In July 2014 we launched a new Community Buildings Energy and Sustainability Guide, we've just got back in touch with our participants to see whether it made a differece.  Generally they were positive and asked that we run it again.  Here is a quote from one satisfied customer:

"The manual was very helpful, we used it to conduct a complete audit of our building inside and out.  We've made an action plan, and are now looking for finance for insualation and glazing.  Thank you very much!

We're considering running another course in 2015, if you are interested please contact Emily at emily@deac.co.uk

If you'd like to see the guidance, scroll down to the bottom of the page. 

Energy and Sustainability in Community Buildings - Training course and Guidance


In July 2014, we lanuched our new Community Buildings Energy and Sustainability Guide. This new resource is designed to help users and managers of community buildings improve the building’s environmental performance, while also saving money on bills and improving comfort and attractiveness.

The Guide, was launched at a training event held in Maiden Newton Village Hall on Saturday 19th July. The training included a practice environmental audit of the village hall, which participants found to have a south facing roof which may be perfect for solar panels!  One participant said, “I am going to audit our hall now, and will be available to help others with theirs”.  Participants were encouraged to conduct audits on their own buildings and to get their entries into the Best Village Competition – Environment Category.  

Emily Bullock,our  Greener Choices Co-ordinator who commissioned the guidance and training, said “The event went down really well. We are thrilled that participants are going to support each other in auditing their own community buildings and spread the learning in their towns and villages,  The Guide and accompanying Review form are intended to be easy to use and self-explanatory so I am hoping that many communities can use them.  I’m looking forward to hearing how participants get on and may run further courses in the autumn”.

To get started on your own commmunity building download the resources here.

Funding available for community buidlings 

Up to £10,000 is currently avoilable form the Dorset Community Foundation for specific areas of activity including installing energy efficiency and renewable energy measures.  This fund closes on 20th March 2015.

 Full details here.  


Jewson - Building Better Communities Competition Opens

The vote-based competition is aimed at transforming spaces and places in need of a little love and attention across the UK. The awards are meant to be used to support building projects of all shapes and sizes, no matter how innovative or ambitious.

The competition is open to any local group in the UK that has a 'big idea' that will benefit its community.

Nominations for innovative and ambitious projects which make use of sustainable products and practices are particularly welcome.

Regional winners will get support of £1,000 and £5,000. One project will win the main £50,000 prize.

The awards are to be used to help pay for the cost of building materials and labour and can be spent on anything from a new roof for the local village hall, a sensory garden, a community festival or a coat of paint for a neglected public facility.

The deadline for entries is 12 April 2015.

More here


Next training course

If there is demand we may run another one day training course.  If you are interested please email emily@da21.org.uk







What's it all about?

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Working with local communities to address climate change in their local area.


A unique opportunity to partner Communities Living Sustainably (CLS) Dorset and position your organisation at the very heart of sustainable living in Dorset.


View our photo gallery and see what CLS Dorset has been up to.


Read the latest news from CLS Dorset.


See the latest sustainable events taking place in Dorset.


Supporting schools to take part in the internationally recognised Eco-School programme.


Providing local residents with information about what they can do to reduce their environmental impact at home.


Working with communities, local producer groups, healthworkers and business support organisations to make local food more accessible to local people.


Helping develop community renewable energy projects such as solar installations on school and community buildings.