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Green Santa visits school children to reward eco-warriors

10 Jan 2015

Local bus operator, Stagecoach North East, has delivered eco-friendly Christmas presents to children from primary schools across the region as winners of its Green Santa competition.

School children were invited to write a letter to the company’s Green Santa to ask for environmentally friendly presents for their school worth up to £250 and schools from South Shields, Newcastle, Sunderland and Hartlepool were chosen from all the entries by Green Santa himself. 

Pupils from Richard Avenue Primary School in Sunderland came up with an innovative idea, with its Gardening Eco Club asking for fruit trees and shrubs for their garden. As the most sustainable school in the north east, the school is keen to further develop its environmental commitment.

At West Walker Primary School in Newcastle, pupils asked for litter pickers, litter hats and tabards so they can form a ‘litter patrol’ as part of the schools’ Eco Council. At South Gosforth First School, also in Newcastle, the ‘Eco Owls’ wanted to create a garden in which fruits and vegetables can be grown, and requested seeds, onion sets, potato tubers, strawberry plants and compost grow bags. To enable the project to start, they also asked for a selection of gardening equipment, including a digging fork, Dutch hoe, soil rake, gloves, hand trowel and a hand fork.

Lord Blyton Primary School pupils from South Shields wanted a second composter for the playground. As the pupils take fruit outside with them during break times, the skins can be recycled and the compost used by the Gardening Club to help their fruit and vegetables grow. At Stanhope Primary School, also in South Shields, pupils requested five recycling bins for the school to build on its green waste disposal for plastics, cardboard and paper.

At Lynnfield Primary School in Hartlepool, pupils requested a composter for their memorial garden which is currently being developed in honour of their former Head Teacher and gardening enthusiast, Mrs Joy Lowe, who very sadly passed away 3 years ago, and two recycling bins in each class to help separate paper from plastic.

Green Santa took time out of his busy schedule to visit the winning schools to congratulate them and present them with their winner’s certificates and gifts. 

Karen Todd, Headteacher at Richard Avenue Primary School, said: “The Gardening Eco Club is thrilled to have won the Stagecoach Green Santa Competition and we look forward to making our school even more environmentally friendly.”

Chris Ingram, Class Teacher at South Gosforth First School, said: “Our pupils are very interested in environmental issues and were thrilled to win this eco-friendly gift which was delivered by 'Green Santa’. Our Eco Owls are very excited about planting the seeds using the new equipment and being able to enjoy the fruits of their labour.”

The Green Santa initiative is part of Stagecoach North East’s environmental programme and is designed to encourage children across the region to be more environmentally aware and demonstrate how easy it is to make a difference to the local environment.

Phil Medlicott, Managing Director, Stagecoach North East, says: “Each year the children come up with fun and creative ideas for their entries, as well as using their imagination for presents to help the school and the environment and this year was no exception.”

“We are committed to working with and for the communities we serve and our Green Santa has helped show the children in the region how important their environment is. I would like to thank all the children who entered the competition and congratulate both schools on their winning letter.”

For further information about Stagecoach North East please visit our About us page.