THORNBURY is the first town in South Gloucestershire to be accepted onto a national scheme which focuses on living with the effects of climate change.

Thornbury has this week become a member of the Transition Town Initiative.

There are more than 150 Transition Towns across the country, all with the aim of taking positive steps to prepare for the impact of climate change and the prospect of less oil and gas.

Thornbury has achieved this transition status through the work of Sustainable Thornbury.

Sustainable Thornbury is a community group which hopes to encourage people to think more about the environment and the impact their day to day lives may be having on the earth’s resources.

Last year Sustainable Thornbury launched a campaign to get rid of all the plastic bags in the town. After six months a survey revealed more than 80 percent of shoppers and stopped using plastic bags given out at the checkouts but now carried their own carrier bags.

More than 90 percent of shop owners also claim to be ordering fewer carrier bags for customers to use.

Margaret Pinder, from Sustainable Thornbury, said the group wanted to reassure residents that lifestyles could be adapted.

She said: "The problems caused by climate change and the prospect of a future with less oil and gas can make people feel helpless but this doesn't have to be the case.

"Sustainable Thornbury believes that we can make the transition to a world with less oil an exciting prospect through working together in our communities."

To help explain the work of Transition Towns and the issues involved Sustainable Thornbury is holding a series of talks over the next few months.

The first talk will be about the impact of the depletion of the world’s oil reserves and this will be led by Ian Page, a local expert, and will be held at the Chantry, Thornbury, on Tuesday, April 28 (7.30pm).