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Bus staff go green and lean for annual eco week

03 Jun 2016

Staff from Stagecoach North East in Newcastle flexed their green fingers and moved their muscles in activities undertaken as part of the local bus operator’s annual Green Week campaign.

At the bus depot in Walkergate, depot cleaner, Paul Penaluna and Martin Foster, bus driver and eco-champion, worked hard to develop a ‘green’ space outside the depot building for staff to relax and enjoy, with raised plant beds and colourful flowers now in bloom.

With plans to develop and extend the patio area, including seating for staff to enjoy during the warmer months, employees are already benefitting from the green space and seeing the difference in a matter of weeks.

Employees also took the ‘green’ high road when they participated in the ‘Midday Mile’, a national campaign to get people out of their offices and workplaces to walk, jog or run a mile over lunchtime.

During Green Week, the depot also enjoyed a number of additional activities to raise awareness among staff and customers, including leaving the car at home and walking or cycling to work and handing out free smart card wallets to customers. The money raised from the ‘leave your car at home day’ will go to a local school to create a garden. 

To end the week of energy saving and environmentally friendly promotions and activities, the company offered healthy snacks to all staff for ‘Fruity Friday’, so they could enjoy a healthy treat throughout the day, with the peelings and cores composted.

David Wakefield, operations manager at the Stagecoach depot in Walkergate, said: “Stagecoach’s annual Green Week is an important awareness campaign which we are keen to support in our local community and at the depot. Despite the unseasonably cool weather during the Midday Mile, it was a great opportunity for our employees to take some time away from the work place, get some fresh air, light exercise and chat with colleagues, and we fully support any activity which encourages general fitness and wellbeing.

“The planted area is also coming along really well and I think it will be very well used by all the staff during the summer months.”

Schools in the area were also sent activity sheets to complete during half term. The company encouraged the young ‘eco warriors’ with a list of tasks; including waste recycling, litter picking and walking instead of travelling by car, with prizes for the schools with the best results.

This year the Green Week theme was ‘Green Sky Thinking’, which aimed to raise awareness among staff and customers about the need to continue to develop new ideas to tackle climate change.