Green idea wins award

Charlotte L (L6) has won the Rotary Club of Cambridge’s inaugural Young Environmentalist award. She was presented with her trophy by the government’s former special representative for climate change, Sir David King, at the Gonville Hotel, Cambridge.

Prof David King and Charlotte L.
Prof David King and Charlotte L.

13th February 2020 — Charlotte’s award-winning scheme is to plant flowering shrubs around the edges of spaces in the city, such as Midsummer Common and Parker’s Piece, to provide habitats and food for birds and insects. This would increase biodiversity and help to address climate change through the absorption of carbon by vegetation.

“There are so many areas in which this could be done: the unused corners of sports fields, verges, lawns. Not only do flowers and bushes look nicer than expanses of grass but they would remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere than grass does,” she said. “There is also strong evidence that nature benefits our mental health, so it is important to provide spaces in our urban areas where people can escape the day-to-day stresses and relax surrounded by nature.”

Charlotte’s project included research into plants suitable for the purpose which would not need replanting each year.

Charlotte hopes to attend Earth Optimism Day on April 25, which will be opened by Sir David Attenborough in the building named in his honour on the Cambridge New Museums Site. The event will be a celebration of successful conservation work around the world.

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The Leys is primarily a boarding school, and our emphasis is on providing a caring, friendly and secure environment for all our pupils. Each child, whether a boarder or day pupil, is attached to one of 11 houses, where study areas and comfortable accommodation are provided, along with a high standard of pastoral care and supervision from housemasters or housemistresses.


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