Tag Archives: charity

What’s next for the tithe barn?

Now that the barn has undergone its urgent repairs, the Trust are turning their attention to fundraising for the second phase of the project to bring waterless eco toilets to the site. We know that this will be a real enabler in terms of future community use and sustainability of the Barn.

Spend a penny
If you spent a penny in the year 1500 (when Henry 7th was king) you’d be spending over £5 today, so we would love it if you would donate at least £5 to the ‘Spend a Penny’ campaign that will enable us to install the high quality environmentally-friendly loos that the Tithe Barn needs to make it an even better place to visit, hire and enjoy. The more you can contribute, the sooner we can have these wonderful facilities in use. You can donate right now on our Total Giving page: https://www.totalgiving.co.uk/appeal/TitheBarnTrust_spendapenny


What’s a Kazubaloo?
The Kazubaloo is an alternative to a composting toilet which doesn’t require any water, electricity or chemicals. They are self-contained, low maintenance and are suitable for high capacity use, which makes them ideal for the Barn and its future uses.

How many are you hoping to install?
Our aim is to install 2 toilets to provide the capacity required for the barn.

Where are they going?
Our new toilets will be installed along the path to the barn, near the oak tree. The system used in the toilets require specific site conditions and we felt that this location is best for both the toilets and to protect the setting of the Tithe Barn.

Are they accessible?
The Kazubaloo is very similar to a standard toilet. The model we are proposing to install is fully accessible.

How do they work?
The toilets primarily operate using solar and wind energy. Solids and liquids are separated through the use a basket which catches the solid waste and allows liquids to drain away into a tank below. The chimney at the back of the Kazubaloo is warmed by the sun, causing the air inside to also heat up, which then rises. At the top of the chimney is an extractor which will rotate in the breeze. The combination of the extractor and the warm air intensifies the airflow through the unit. Fresh air is drawn down through the toilet pan which stops any odours from escaping. The constant airflow through the toilet dehydrates the waste, reducing it by up to 90%.


When will they be installed?
This will be subject to raising the required funds and achieving planning consent.

How much will they cost?
We are hoping to raise £30,000 through our “Spend a Penny” campaign which will cover the costs of the toilets and their installation.

Does it smell?
Not at all. The key is the separation of the liquids and solids and the airflow. By separating the waste inside the Kazubaloo System and ensuring that a near continuous flow of air passes over the separated waste the system is designed to ensure that decomposition is an aerobic process. The products of aerobic decomposition are odourless and non-toxic.


What happens to the waste material when it’s cleaned out of the toilet?
The dried waste is removed from the toilet in a basket, having spent roughly a year in the system drying out. The inert and odourless dry waste is transferred in the baskets, using the precaution of gloves, into a secondary composting process to allow the waste to be composted fully. This generally takes the form of a compost bin dedicated to the waste. However, the reality is, that the compost bin will fill up very slowly and therefore will not need emptying for a considerable time.

What if there is no sun or wind?
A waterless toilet provides advantageous conditions for evaporation and it is extremely rare that zero evaporation will occur. In any event, if there is waste in the system, then microbiological activity will continue and the waste will continue to break down. If a period of prolonged darkness and lack of wind occurred and waste was continually added to the system, then this would present a problem, but it’s somewhat unlikely.

Do they work in cold wet climates?
Waterless toilets do work in cold wet climates, the amount of usage a toilet gets should be matched to the climate. In colder climates the toilets should be used less and in warmer climates the usage can be increased.

What about toilet paper?
This will break down alongside the human waste.

What happens if people throw rubbish into the toilet?
Nothing. The Kazubaloo will continue to function as normal in spite of drinks cans, sanitary towels, plastic cutlery, nappies and so on being thrown into the system. They will be retrieved at the end of the cycle and disposed of in the normal way. However, we would rather people didn’t use our new toilets as a bin and use the bins that will be provided, or take it home.


How is it maintained?
After an initial assessment of use, aside from the usual cleaning, the toilets will only require maintenance once or twice a year, depending on usage. “Emptying” the toilets would usually only be a five minute job.

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Carols at the Barn

Carols at the Tithe Barn was the perfect way to start our festive season, so thank you to everyone for making this event so special. Visitors were able to escape the commercialisation of Christmas and sang classic carols such as Silent Night and Away in the Manger.

Of course we have to thank our volunteers too. Gemma O’Shea, Volunteer Chair of Trustees, says “We’re so lucky to have such dedicated volunteers who willingly give their time. As the event was free to everyone and we’re a small charity working with a tiny budget we have to be really resourceful. Maggie, one of our fabulous volunteers, used lots of foliage with holly and ivy foraged from the garden to create some traditional hand tied arrangements to hang around the unique timber frame Tithe Barn. Our thanks have to go to Tesco Milton also for donating mulled wine and mince pies for the event.

Tithe Barn Trust awarded £12k

The Tithe Barn Trust is delighted to announce that we’ve been awarded grants of £6,000 from the Architectural Heritage Fund and another £6,000 in match funding by the Pilgrim Trust.

Gemma O’Shea, Chair of Trustees, says “This is fantastic news and means a lot to the Tithe Barn Trust, as we’re a small charity and not-for profit volunteer group committed to saving the unique Tithe Barn, in Landbeach near Cambridge, for everyone to enjoy. We’re going to use these grants to appoint a Fundraiser and Business Case Developer. This essential funding will be the enabler we need to help us reach our target of £260,000 to restore the special Grade II listed timber framed Tithe Barn. The public have been incredibly generous and donated over £60,000 already, but we still need to raise more. Our thanks go to the Architectural Heritage Fund (AHF) and the Pilgrim Trust.”

The AHF is a charity working to promote the conservation and sustainable re-use of historic buildings for the benefit of communities across the UK. The Pilgrim Trust aims to preserve and promote Britain’s historical and intellectual assets and to provide assistance to vulnerable members of society.

Tithe Barns are increasingly rare in the UK and this is the only remaining one in Cambridgeshire in its original condition with thatched roof, timber frame, timber granary and brick threshing floor. Experts believe the barn dates to the medieval period.
Sadly the barn is in a state of disrepair and unless we act now we could lose this national treasure.

4 Ways YOU can get involved;
1. Donate today at www.totalgiving.co.uk/mypage/TitheBarnTrust
2. Become a Friend. Visit www.tithebarntrust.org.uk/become-a-member/                                                                                                                                  3. Volunteer or become a Trustee. Email tithebarntrust@gmail.com to find out more.
4. Come along to one of next events at the Tithe Barn –

Apple Gifting
Sunday 21st October, 11am-3pm
Begin your own apple gifting tradition. Get hands-on and decorate an apple. In the past these were offered around the community as a sign of friendship, good health and good luck.

Outdoor Gym
Saturday 10th November, 10am-1pm
Get active and involved and help us tidy the hedge and grass track to the Tithe Barn. The barn will be open to visit too.

Carols at the barn
Saturday 8th December, 2.30pm
Start your festive season with Carol singing and enjoy mulled wine or fruit juice and mince pies. Wrap up well.

See you there!

Shakespeare at the Barn

On Thursday 14th June one hundred visitors came to watch Shakespeare’s comedy ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ at the Tithe Barn performed by the Cambridge School of Visual & Performing arts (CSVPA).
Rachel Ellis, Head of Drama at CSVPA, says “The Tithe Barn is such a wonderful piece of history and I am thrilled at the chance of our students being able to perform in it. The students on our performing arts courses at CSVPA undertake training in both classical and contemporary acting. Their June performance is a reduced Shakespeare play especially edited for a small cast, each actor playing multiple roles. It is a lot of fun! The barn is a vital piece of local history and I feel strongly that it is a gift to be able to share the local cultural heritage of such places with our very international cohort of students. We have students from Cambridgeshire but also as far afield as China, Russia and South America on our courses. We wanted to show our full support for the Tithe Barn Trust’s campaign to restore the barn.”

It was a fantastic evening and demonstrated the Tithe Barn’s true potential at bringing people together.

College supports Tithe Barn

Have you spotted the sheaf of longstraw yet? As part of their ‘Sponsor a Sheaf’ campaign, the Tithe Barn Trust, a small charity and volunteer not-for profit group, are sending a sheaf of longstraw to different locations around Cambridgeshire until they raise enough to rethatch and restore the Tithe Barn in Landbeach, near Cambridge.

This week Cottenham Village College students and staff showed their support for the Tithe Barn project. Helen Cassady, Cottenham Village College Principal, says “I believe the Tithe Barn is an important part of our local history. We are proud to support the project and to look forward to experiencing the barn in its former medieval glory.”

The Tithe Barn Trust aims to save and sympathetically restore the Grade II Listed Tithe Barn for everyone to enjoy, but we need you to help us. We estimate we’ll need 5 tonnes of locally sourced hand drawn Longstraw to rethatch the roof. The public can help by sponsoring a sheaf for as little as £5 at www.totalgiving.co.uk/mypage/TitheBarnTrust .

The Tithe Barn Trust believes the medieval Tithe barn, with thatched roof, brick threshing floor and timber granary, to be unique to Cambridgeshire and even of national significance. It is one of the few Tithe Barns in the country still standing next to its medieval rectory. Over 90% of Tithe Barns in the UK have been converted and their historic features are being lost forever. Sadly, the Landbeach Tithe Barn is in a poor condition and deteriorating.

Key to the Tithe Barn Trust’s charitable aim is maximising public access to the Tithe Barn, once restored, and education. We want to ensure that the Tithe Barn has a vibrant and sustainable future.

On Saturday 10th February from 10am – 1pm volunteer and get active and involved at our ‘Outdoor gym’ and help us tidy the hedge and grass track to the Tithe Barn. The barn will be open to visit too.

Pencil Sunday 8 April in your diary too for our ‘I-Spy the barn’s wildlife & Grow your own’ event from 2pm – 5pm. Families can spot the barn’s wildlife and claim a prize. Then sow seeds to take home and grow your own veg for our July competition.

Follow the Tithe Barn Trust on Twitter @TBarnT and like us on Facebook FriendsofLandbeachTitheBarn to keep updated about our events and to find out where the sheaf of longstraw will be next week.

3 Ways YOU can get involved;
1. Make a donation today at www.totalgiving.co.uk/mypage/TitheBarnTrust
2. Become a Friend. Visit https://tithebarntrust.org.uk/join-get-involved/become-a-member/
3. Volunteer. Email tithebarntrust@gmail.com to find out more.