Glittering green prizes were handed out just before Easter. The seventh Creating the Greenest County Awards celebrate environmental excellence in Suffolk and 95 individuals, businesses, schools and communities across Suffolk were nominated.
I was privileged to share the celebrations and it was a particular pleasure to hear about the achievements of local people. The west of the county was well represented with finalists in education and industry showing strongly this year.
Two local schools received awards. Castle Manor School in Haverhill won the award for Greenest School. They have achieved so much in one year; creating a kitchen and herb garden, rehoming battery chickens , training children and teachers and parents the arts of willow weaving and keeping chickens, building bug hotels and hedgehog houses. And much, much more.
Ickworth Park Primary was runner-up in the Local Food and Drink category. The school is a Food for Life partner, showing students where their food comes from, growing their own fruit and veg and encouraging healthy eating and good nutrition.
The Greenest Product or Service category was awarded to local firm Green Duck which is based in Bury St Edmunds. Amongst other services, the company collects, recycles and reuses electronic and electrical equipment with a near perfect recycling target. How and where the waste goes for reprocessing is designed to give customers confidence in the simple, ethical and cost-effective service.
Runner-up was Brandon based firm, Lignacite, which manufactures building materials. It was nominated for the building blocks it has developed, using recycled materials. In its nomination interview, it revealed that one of its early ‘green’ blocks actually sprouted andit subsequently discovered some contained recycled beans. The farmer’s pigs loved it.
Its latest products have won national industry awards too and were used in the Shard and the Olympic Park. The ‘Carbonbuster’ building block is half recycled sand and gravel, half ash from waste processing. This means that the final product locks in more CO2 than is produced in its manufacture.
It is testimony to changing perceptions that, whether in education or industry and commerce, these four organisations have taken environmental improvement as a core business value and have been able to show that local can lead the way.
Visit www.greensuffolk.org/awards2014 to read more about this Year’s Creating the Greenest County award finalists.
-- Peter Gudde is environment manager for St Edmundsbury Borough Council and Forest Heath District Council.