Start of main content.

St Christopher’s Lead the Field

From an orchard on the school field to a massive polytunnel donated by local firm First Tunnels, St Christopher’s approach to sustainability is growing from strength to strength. Having just picked up the IAA award for Sustainability at the Best Practice Awards Dinner hosted by Tim Campbell MBE on 4th July at the Millennium Gloucester Hotel London, they are celebrating this national recognition. Their commitment was judged best at equipping students with the knowledge and skills to lead a sustainable lifestyle.

Having successfully organised and hosting over 30 primary schools at the Lancashire Children’s Sustainability Conference in May, certainly put them ahead of the field. Pupils and staff were able to share good practice and new ideas from local experts and providers of sustainable education. The judges thought this was an innovational way to spread good practice to all young people.

The award for sustainability was from a range of 8 diverse categories giving schools the opportunity to proudly share their examples of cutting edge success.

Wendy Litherland, sustainability coordinator explained, “Although we grow a variety of produce, we also have sustainability in our very ethos. From recycling the usual paper and plastic, to ensuring our old text books and pupils school bags are reused by sending them to Africa. The whole school, not just the very dedicated Eco Group thinks and works as sustainably as possible. Our new sixth form reflects this whole school approach, as pupils designed it to maximise renewable energy. ”

The IAA promotes transformational, innovative and creative practice and as such we are proud of our Annual Best Practice Awards which recognise, share and pay tribute to the outstanding work that takes place right across the country.

‘Following last year’s success hosting the Lancashire Children’s Sustainability, a two day programme is planned for the summer of 2014. with the aim of attract delegates from Lancashire and beyond.’. There will be the usual day designed for Key Stage 2 children and a new initiative in the form of a day for older Key Stage 3 and Key Stage 4 students. St Christopher’s Eco Team are expected to play an important role on both days.

Healthy Life Style- Healthy Planet, our new slogan

We have seen the numbers of pupils and staff who either walk, cycle or car share their journey to school dramatically increase, not bad when we consider to have to go uphill on any approach to our school. The extra planning is appreciated by the eco group and of course the planet.

The polytunnel continues to see more students involved both during form time and in lessons. The majority of the work is still done by the eco group themselves, but year 7 have been particularly hands on in the cocker courtyard. Hopefully they will enjoy harvesting the tomatoes, courgettes, onions etc after the summer. The strawberries and potatoes, were particularly tasty before the end of summer term.

The Hyndburn & Ribble Valley Eco Cluster Group continues to meet at school and share experience and expertise.

This year we held the Lancashire Children’s Sustainability Conference, on Friday May 17th. With over 200 primary school children visiting from over 30 different primary schools from across Lancashire, our sixth form was filled with small, happy, smiley children. Over 100 adult delegates attended, ranging from head teachers to teaching assistants. Whisper the owl was part of the World Owl Trust workshop run by ex-pupil Karla Gudgen- just one of the 18 workshops on offer throughout the day. The school field saw llamas, a mobile farm and a survival skills workshop. Year 7 pupils acted as guides, able to join in with all the activities. Mad Science ran experiments in the sixth form hub alongside exhibits from compassion in world farming, RSPB and FACE to name a few. The event was sponsored by LCC environment directorate and cycle pods. Our ‘lads and dads’ after school cooking group provided wholesome (locally sourced) lunch for the adults, including Luc Floreani who travelled up from London to perform his song ‘breathe’ for us. 

The year 10 students supported the event, both with planning and strategic organisation on the day, some were interviewed by BBC Radio Lancashire others shared our good practice with Graham Jones our local MP and a councillor. Tony Berry from the Houghton Weavers opened the event, which Glynis Goldsbourgh helped to facilitate. Many of our year 13 students managed to peruse the stands whilst lower school pupils were brought along by their class teachers. All in all the primary school children left charged with new ideas, met new people and shared their good practice.

Green Day

The whole school enjoyed a green day on Friday June 14th. With  pupils and staff  (including office, support staff and our dinner ladies) dressed in Green, lunch time fundraisers included (free range- of course) egg ‘n’ spoon races and wellie throwing along with a cake sale. The money raised has been spent on new outdoor furniture, as requested by the students.


The first official duty of our new Eco Captains, Courtney Talbot and Jack Pickup, was to lead the senior eco team Ellie, Bridget, Nick and James on a visit to the RSPCA AGM in London, to not only represent our school, but the prestigious Roots & Shoots programme, accompanied by Mrs Litherland and Mr Calvert. 

“On Saturday 29th June we were invited down to the Royal Geographical Society in London to be involved in the RSPCA youth AGM. The AGM included listening to fascinating talks from different organisations and projects such as, The NSPCC and Mallydams wood. We were invited by Jane Goodall’s Roots & Shoots because of our work within schools and our local primary schools and soon realised that we were the only school from Northern England and Scotland, which was an amazing achievement in itself. We have taken back lots of exciting new ideas to improve us as individuals and also our Eco Group. As the day drew to a close we hoped that we had left St Christopher’s ethos at the meeting by offering opinions on different topics that will help shape the future of the RSPCA”, commented Ellie.

Report compiled by Courtney Talbot Eco Captain 2013-14


Share by email or online:

Share by email or online: