Julia Hailes MBE

Sustainability Pioneer


John Elkington to lunch (Mar07)

The blog idea came from my publisher but I rather like it. Reminds me of writing a diary which I did for nearly 20 years. When I read them later I realise I put an awful lot about what I ate, so will have to avoid that in my blog! But today maybe an exception.

John Elkington, his wife Elaine and Pamela Hartigan, Managing Director of the Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship came to lunch. John reminded me before hand that he was a fish eating vegetarian. I said that I’d already planned a fish pie, knowing his dietary predilections rather well since I spent at least 2 years virtually living in his house, as we worked on the original Green Consumer Guide and set up SustainAbility Ltd (www.sustainability.com).

My friend Tricia Walsh (my youngest son, Monty’s godmother) says I mustn’t forget the delicious tarte au citron she made. She’s just come back from Timbuktu, where she’s been exploring the potential for twinning this town, which was once thought of as the most inaccessible place in the Sahara, with Glastonbury, in Somerset. As it turned out Hay on Wye won the prestigious twinning initiative – see their website for more information (www.hay2timbuktu.org).  I wrote my first blog ever about Timbuktu and within seconds someone complained. I was absolutely amazed, as I thought I was sending my blog into nowhere and was hugely surprised that anyone read it, let alone respond within minutes. It’s rather spooky.

Comment Section

0 Responses

  1. Hi Julia…. RE: The twinning of Hay-on-Wye and Timbuktu. I am responding to the comment on your blog that…. ‘They apparently arrived in Mali with 5 tickets to their wonderful summer literary festival’…. I was part of the group that went to Timbuktu, Mali in February from Hay so I can assure you without doubt that we did not take any tickets for the Hay festival, any offer of tickets, or any other form of backhander. The process we used to achieve the twinning was completely according to protocol as advised by UKOWLA (one world twinning association). I am saddened to hear this rumour flying around as it really devalues the months of hard work that went into the twinning process in the run up to the visit, and all the people from Hay who gave up their free time to achieve this. Please have a look at http://www.hay2timbuktu.org where you can find out more about our organisation and contact us with any questions.

  2. Hi Julia… a little rum for an ethical consultant – with an MBE to boot – to accuse a delegation from a rival town of unethical behaviour on the basis of rumor – don’t you think? I can understand why Rosanna Westwood might be a tad miffed, particularly as the winning town has been declared a UN Gold Star Community as part of a new North/South ethical partnership initiative to help overcome poverty in Africa.

  3. Hi Julia

    We worked with Hay-on-Wye to support the educational twinning of Hay-on-Wye and Timbuktu through our colleagues in the International education and resources network (www.iearn.org). The iEARN charities in both Mali and UK exist to support collaborative projects that connect youth to make a difference in the world. I can assure you that there was no ‘buying’ of votes involved in this project only ‘connecting of hearts’.

    Dr Cheryl Morgan
    Chairman of Trustees
    iEARN UK

  4. Dear Rosanna and Cheryl,
    I have been away, hence only just seen your comments about Hay twinning with Timbuktu. I am very sorry to have upset you and have removed the offending remark. I’m afraid I didn’t think about it enough before publishing almost my first blog. It’s been a good shot across the bows to be more careful and I hope it hasn’t caused too much offence. Good luck with your twinning initiative. Best wishes,

  5. Dear Julia,

    Thank you for responding so positively and quickly to our comments. We really appreciate that you have posted up our website. I am sure Hay and Glastonbury will be working together with Timbuktu in the future. Thank you also to all our supporters, especially those with years of experience in collaboration and linking with communities around the world.

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