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SE1 schools are greenest in Southwark

Charles Dickens Primary School and St Saviour's & St Olave's Secondary School were each awarded cash prizes of £2000 last week in recognition of their environmental work.

The award is a three year challenge to schools, organised by the Mayor of London and Capital Standards, to develop children's responsibility towards the environment.

The event was a chance to celebrate the success of some of the projects that pupils have been involved in – from designing and planting apple and pear orchards to compiling waste and energy audits in their schools.

Pupils took part in an interactive environmental quiz, played music with instruments made from scrap and got a chance to make their own adverts to promote recycling.

Prizes were also handed out to children who used the Golden Bin, placed in their school playground, to dispose of their litter responsibly.

Over one hundred pupils from schools across Southwark gathered at City Hall last week to celebrate the first anniversary of the London Schools Environment Awards in the borough.

Cllr Richard Thomas, Southwark Council's executive member for environment and transport, said: "A third of the schools in Southwark have taken part in projects linked to the awards over the past year, so the green bug is really spreading.

"The scheme clearly demonstrates how we can all take small actions to improve our local environment, and what a huge difference these actions can make collectively.

"Congratulations and a big thank you to all the schools taking part in the awards scheme; they are playing a huge part in making Southwark a cleaner, greener and safer borough.'

The Mayor of London, Ken Livingstone, added: "I would like to commend the hard work of all the schools in the borough which took part in the first year of the London Schools Environment Awards and look forward to seeing them further their knowledge of the environment in the second year of the scheme."

The event was also used to launch a new community pilot scheme from Nike called ReUSE A SHOE. The project involves recycling old trainers and making them into sports courts. Local schools will be supporting the scheme by encouraging people to put their old shoes in Salvation Army collection banks. Nike in turn will donate four sports courts to the Southwark area.

The awards offer a cash incentive for primary schools with an annual distinction award of 2000 and a highly commended award of 1000. Southwark Council is the only local authority in London to match-fund the project so that secondary schools can take part and receive cash prizes too.

The distinction award was given to Charles Dickens Primary and St Saviour's & St Olave's Secondary this year. St Josephs RC Primary and Walworth School were highly commended.

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