The Showroom Cinema, Sheffield was on 6 October 2007, 11am-5pm FORUM: FILM, VISUAL ART, DISCUSSION

The event was very well attended and over 55 people took place in conversations and discussions and networking around urban food growing. Notes from the Open Space ‘break off’ groups can be found here. Click here for Jo Salter’s graphic montages of different parts of Sheffield which were used to inspire and provoke different ways of seeing the city and spaces (made in collaboration with AMC, Sheffield Wildlife Trust and SOFI).

It was felt that there is a need for a non-partisan linking organisation like Grow Sheffield to take forward the urban food growing agenda and there was an overwhelming positive response for further meetings and events …The next Grow Sheffield gathering is from 5pm-7pm on Seedy Saturday (see events page) at Walkley Community Hall


The Showroom Cinema, Sheffield on 6 October, 11am-5pm

Grow Sheffield in collaboration with the Showroom screened two short documentary films about the possibilities and challenges of food growing today. To kick off the day and to inspire creative thinking about urban growing we screened The Power of Community: How Cuba Survived Peak Oil which is a fascinating depiction of Cuba’s transition from large fossil-fuel intensive farming to a network of small, less energy-intensive organic farms and urban gardens. Programmed for the end of the day will be The Future of Foods – the experience of GM Crops in the US, as a reflection on the way large scale, industrialised food growing is going. These two films provide excellent examples of the countercurrents operating in agriculture at the moment across the globe.

There was a short presentation and talk around projected images of Sheffield as a productive urban landscape using photography, panoramas and 3D graphics created with SOFI and Sheffield Wildlife Trust. We selected and visualised a range of different scales of project to give a taster of what is possible.

This was followed by an open discussion about urban growing in Sheffield – possibilities, realities and opportunities for joined up thinking. This involved breaking into small groups to enable wider participation, more voices and a chance for people to express their own ideas and views and meet others. The results of the break-off groups were shared at the end of the session and people were free to move between different discussions.

The Showroom chef prepared a lunchtime menu from locally grown food.

Images, texts and film clips from different urban food projects and case studies around the world were also on display at the event. There 55 participants included growers, people with allotments, community activists, artists, people interested in growing or community gardens or the politics of food growing and urban land use and people from other cities.

A film about the Abundance project was screened on the Showroom bar public screen from 6-14 October.