Liverpool schools blossom with orchard initiative

Veolia has joined forces with Tesco and community action charity Groundwork to introduce greener areas in schools by donating free fruit trees and strawberry plants to five schools across the Liverpool City Region.

The Veolia Orchard campaign is donating almost 600 fruit trees and 800 strawberry plants to schools across the UK. This initiative aims to provide schools without green areas or limited space the opportunity to learn more about the environment.

Now in its second year, the Veolia Orchard campaign has successfully supported the establishment of 11 orchards in the Liverpool City Region. The apple and pear trees, as well as the strawberry plants, have been provided by Grow at Brogdale, a specialist in organic plant care. These plants have been delivered to the winning schools in March to give them the best chance to bloom in Spring.

The schools receiving orchards this year are Netherton Moss Primary School, Gorsewood Primary, The District C of E Primary, Pinehurst Primary, and St Peter’s Catholic Primary School.

To house the plants, Tesco has donated planters made from recycled soft plastic – collected in its stores from customers to help recycle plastic not always collected through kerbside collections. Soft plastic used in each planter could include bread bags, carrier bags and pasta packets. Veolia’s own ProGrow has provided peat-free compost to fill the planters.

This campaign is being powered by Veolia’s Sustainable Schools programme which educates children and young adults on the importance of protecting our planet and the environment. For more information on how Veolia supports schools and to discover other partnership opportunities please visit www.veolia.co.uk/schools

Abbie Hegherty, at Netherton Moss Primary School said, “We are so excited to expand our forest school with the addition of our orchard and can’t wait for all children to enjoy this amazing space. We had so much fun planting the trees, it was really wonderful to see the children so enthusiastic and excited to get their hands dirty and create this amazing space for our school community.

“This experience has provided an opportunity for the children to make a positive impact on their environment and it’s an experience they are truly proud of.”

Steve Mitchell, Regional Director for Veolia said, “We are delighted at how popular the campaign is with schools across the Liverpool City Region. Improving air quality around schools, engaging pupils on the power of plants and finding innovative recycling solutions to support the community is all part of our purpose to deliver ecological transformation.”

Courtney Pallett, Tesco’s Packaging Campaigns Manager said, “Our in-store recycling points help make soft plastics even easier for our customers to recycle. We’re delighted to be working with Veolia to turn the plastic waste we collect into something new – keeping it out of the environment and helping create greener learning spaces for children in our local communities.”

Image: Veolia’s ECO Officer, Rachel Albrecht at the planting event with school children at Netherton Moss Primary School

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