GREEN-FINGERED pupils at Queen Elizabeth’s High School celebrated their new garden and greenhouse with an official opening ceremony, complete with a visit from a TV celebrity.
Designer Julia Kendell from BBC1’s DIY SOS kindly agreed to open the school garden and greenhouse.
Students started making plans to create a garden area, where they could provide the school canteen and the local community with home-grown produce, in October 2009 before funds were secured by the school council in March 2010.
The school has also been shortlisted for one of the Times Educational Supplement’s Schools’ Award (TESSA) in the Sustainable School of the Year category, joining five other schools from across the country on the shortlist.
Headteacher Mr Allsop said: “QEHS has been quietly driving forward sustainability over the last few years and we are thrilled to have been shortlisted for this prestigious award.”
“As a school we have a duty to educate the adults of tomorrow in issues of sustainability and all of these projects provide practical hands on examples of how we can, both individually and as a school, make a difference.”
He added: “Whatever the outcome of the final awards ceremony in July, we are proud to have our efforts recognised and will continue to do what we can towards sustainability”.
At the official opening of the garden, Julia was given a bouquet after she planted a tree donated by The British Hardwood Tree Nursery Ltd.
“We are honoured to have Julia open our school garden and would like to thank her for taking time out of her busy schedule to be here,” a QEHS spokesman said.
“The garden area started with three raised beds and has quickly grown over the last year. Last year’s produce was a great success and the students enjoyed an end of term barbecue using vegetables from the garden and the garden is maintained by staff and students during lunchtimes and in the after school club.”
He added: “The garden club would like to thank everyone who helped in collecting over 2000 two litre bottles to help make this incredible structure, and to the site management team for constructing it.”
“The greenhouse currently has an abundance of seedlings which are flourishing, and we look forward to an even more successful year.”