• Tue. May 28th, 2024

North East Connected

Hopping Across The North East From Hub To Hub

Screen Shot 2016-01-07 at 13.13.10Pupils from north east schools were treated to a ‘green’ Christmas when Green Santa dropped in and presented them with a cheque for £250 after winning a competition.

Local bus operator, Stagecoach North East invited school children across Newcastle, Sunderland, South Shields, Teesside and Hartlepool to write a letter to Green Santa to ask for environmentally-friendly presents for their school, and four schools were selected as the winners.

At South Gosforth First School in Newcastle, the winning letter which was penned by children from the Eco Owls group requested some solar-powered water features to develop its schools pond, and some materials to make mini beast hotels and hedgehog homes. The eco group also asked for plants and bushes to help develop the nature garden, as well as child-friendly water butts to help water the plants during the growing season and some academic guides to help identify and monitor plants and animals.

The schools achieved its Silver Eco-Schools Award last year and this academic year, is hoping to gain its first Green Flag award. During the presentation the Eco Owls sang a recycled version of ‘The Twelve Days of Christmas’ with three recycled pens, 5 can rings and 10 bags for keeping just some of the ideas included.

Nine-year-old Anna Morgan, a veteran Eco-Owl and pupil at the school, said: “I liked doing all the planting in the nature garden. I’m looking forward to more next year.”

Chris Ingram, teacher at South Gosforth First School, said: “The children at SGFS are very environmentally aware.  They love using all the child sized garden equipment Green Santa helped us buy last year and are very excited outdoor plans for next year.”

Year 2 pupils from St Cuthbert’s RC Primary School in Sunderland requested a water carrier to help the pupils water the vegetable patch in the garden, plus a selection of recycling bins. Lesley Alexander, teacher at St Cuthbert’s RC Primary School, said: “We are delighted that our letters impressed the judges and are looking forward to buying our new resources to continue to deliver environmental projects in school.”

Lynnfield Primary School and Stranton Primary School were selected as the winners from Hartlepool.

Young eco warriors from the Student Council at Lynnfield Primary School requested a new greenhouse to help restore their recently developed memorial garden, which was created after the death of their much-loved former head teacher. The school wanted to grow its own fruit and vegetables and had created a poly tunnel, but recent bad weather and strong winds blew the poly tunnel down, which was beyond repair. A water butt was also on their wish list to collect water and help keep the plants healthy.

Eight-year-old Liam, a pupil at the school and member of the School Council, said: “It will be great to have a new greenhouse to protect all of our plants.”

Deb O’Connor, School Council Lead at Lynnfield Primary School, said: “It was so upsetting to discover our polytunnel had been destroyed in the bad weather, so winning this is great as we can now look forward to getting a new greenhouse to begin the new season’s growing.

The winning letter penned by children from the School Council at Stranton Primary School requested grow bags, seeds and equipment suitable for young gardeners to help develop the schools’ outdoor area for the nursery and reception.

Louise Yildirim, teacher at Stranton Primary School, said: “We are so excited to have been selected to win a prize. We are continuing to develop the outside area in EYFS and we want to set up a planting area. This will enable our youngest children in school to learn about the environment, seeds and plants and where our fruits and vegetables come from. It will also enable them to work with the local community by inviting parents and carers into school to be part of their child’s learning.”

Phil Medlicott, Managing Director, Stagecoach North East, said: “The Green Santa campaign enables us to support our local schools and help educate children to become more environmentally aware, and our Green Santa has certainly captured their imagination.

“The entries this year were impressive and the schools obviously work hard to develop the green initiatives with much success, so we would like to give our thanks to everyone who entered the competition. Our congratulations go to all the winning schools for their excellent entries and we are delighted to be able to help their eco-programmes even further.”

For further information about Stagecoach North East please visit www.stagecoachbus.com

By admin