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St Mary's primary school wins national environmental award

The Prime Minister was present to see a Maidenhead school beat hundreds of others to win an environmental award at the House of Commons.

Theresa May nominated St Mary’s Catholic Primary School, in Cookham Road, for the Green Heart Hero Greenest School or Youth Project award, and congratulated them at a reception following their win on Tuesday, March 13.

St Mary’s received the award for its long-term commitment to tackling climate change and inventive ways of engaging children in sustainability projects.

Headteacher Sandra Barry said: “Looking after the environment is so important.

“Otherwise, we would not have a world to enjoy.

“Our children started learning about the environment in reception, and by the time they reach year six they are talking about sophisticated environmental issues like microbeads and plastics in the ocean.”

Mrs Barry joined the school two terms ago and says she has ‘inherited a wonderment’ thanks to the work of Elaine Hurrell, the year five and six teacher who is most closely involved with its eco-friendly work.

The school runs a number of sustainability projects, including energy drive weeks, carbon-free Fridays, and an eco-garden for children to grow their own vegetables and compost food waste.

It is also raising awareness and money for the people of Anguilla who were devastated by Hurricane Irma.

The school is well recognised for its sustainable work, winning five Green Flag awards in the last 10 years – an internationally recognised award for school sustainability.

Mrs Barry said: “That is part of looking after our world. Not everybody has access to the things we enjoy.

“The school has a 10-year history of helping the environment and we have to change the way we use the world’s finite resources.”

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