Monthly Archives:September 2004

Clever child carriers

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Baby carriers that turn into chairs; backpacks that turn into child carriers… having children is not a reason to stop hiking anymore, and here’s why:

Chil carrier

Solar heating systems

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Solar Water and Space Heating Systems Course on 16th Oct at the Midwest Renewable Energy Association.
Learn how to use the sun’s energy for domestic uses (showers, sinks, clothes washer) and for home heating. These systems are easy to install, and often pay for themselves in energy savings in just a few years. This class provides an overview of a variety of systems.

survival is war in this city

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I am the very model of a modern hunter-gatherer.

Its 7 on a Monday evening. My head’s hanging over a supermarket skip. Behind me, unawares, a stream of shoppers head home. By the time they’ve heaved their carrier bags into their SUVs , I’ll have probably enough food for a week. It’s the ultimate special offer: everything you need, free, any time you want it. Running at all stores, including the one near you, all year round.

NextGen camping stoves

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Here are a few specimens of the new camping stove generation. They work in the wind, they love below-zero temperatures, weigh a few ounces and take almost no space — a must-have if you want to be ready for anything, anytime…


Plant your roof

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Green roofs are designed to support the growth of plants. They consist of a special waterproof and root repellant membrane, a drainage system, filter cloth, a lightweight growing medium and plants installed on top of human-built buildings.

Green Roof

Research into the advantages of planted roofs is being carried out in universities around the world, like Sussex university in the UK, and Penn State university in the US.

Homes 2016

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UK planners James Woudhuysen and Ian Abley look forward optimistically to 2016 in Blueprint magazine :

Forget the 0.12 million new dwellings that deputy prime minister John Prescott conceded should be added to London Gateway’s 1.6 million inhabitants in 2004. In their best case scenario, after freeing up the planning process, a
whopping 1.2 million homes have been put in over a decade – 10 times the initial intention.


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From Clare Morgan

Here is one self-build home that got around the planning laws! A CLASSIC BUS that had been converted into a UK home sold at auction for £132,500. The 1920s bus had been parked on clifftops at Porthtowan, Cornwall, by a miner in the 1930s. Over the years it was added to and turned into a one-bedroomed property with a balcony and sea views.

Only two people bid for the home at the auction, which was held at the Penventon Hotel, Redruth. The successful bidder was George Kinsella, originally from London, who had sold up and moved to Cornwall.

Sports sandals

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In the past couple of years, sports sandals have grown up, evolving from cousin of the flip-flop to globetrotting year-round shoe.

Sports sandals

VW Camper alive in UK

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VOLKSWAGEN MIGHT have finally killed off the original Beetle, but its van cousin – the basis of a million camper conversions – is enjoying a stay of execution.

Known as the Type 2, or “bay window” van (its predecessor had a beaky nose and split windscreen), it fell off the twig in Europe in 1979, but factories in South America kept churning them out. Two Gloucestershire-based brothers, Chris and Jason Jones, have been quietly importing the vehicles from Brazil since the late 1990s and have developed a lucrative sideline converting them into caravans, although minibuses and bog standard vans are also sold.