I have just been to a remarkable talk in Slaithwaite, hosted by the local Transition Town, by Nicole Foss from Ontario, who runs a blog called the Automatic Earth.

The evening started, within my first hour in town, nestled in the Dales, with a dispute between two local people (one a lifer, the other was the Chair, Jon Walker, having lived there for only 25 years) about how you pronounce Slaithwaite. (Clue: whatever the right answer may be, it is certainly nothing all that much like Slaithwaite…)

Nicole Foss looked at the constraints we face in terms of energy and in terms of finance, and how two crashes, of production and of economic demand, may now accelerate and interact. I have rarely heard a bleaker outlook, but she took us through with charm and insight into imagining how one could act ‘after the crash’, in Guy Dauncey’s phrase. Get into community, build practical skills, avoid debt is what I took away.

And a desire to come back soon.

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