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News > News from the College > Bradfield Sustainability Week 2023

Bradfield Sustainability Week 2023

2023 sees the 3rd iteration of Sustainability Week at Bradfield. Led by Biology teacher and Head of Sixth Form, Phil Clegg (H 82-86), the week aims to create a focus on sustainability across the College community and to encourage the behavioural change necessary to deliver the College’s sustainability goals.  Whilst the initiative is College-wide, there is a particular focus on pupil efforts as Phil explains: Sustainability week for the pupils is based upon the ‘Golden Egg’ Inter House Sustainability Competition,

Virtual Golden Eggs are awarded by teachers to pupils for undertaking sustainable actions – 300 given out on Wednesday. Examples of something that a Golden Egg might be awarded for – from the simple ie turning of a light or smartboard when leaving a room, to the more inventive – suggesting that instead of issuing physically printed name tags for the school photo, to instead share the information electronically.

This competition is complemented by five other initiatives that are taking places this year;

Golden Eggs are also issued to the boarding house that has had the lowest energy consumption over a given period – as determined by the electricity meter reading. These competitions are hard-fought.

Each house is tasked with a sustainability project and the winning project is awarded seed funding of £100. Last year G House collected Aluminium cans, crushed and melted them and converted them into rings, and I House made faux leather from avocado skins

A drive to reduce the overall waste produced and increase the amount of recycling in the boarding houses – calculated by weighing the waste produced.

New in 2023 – the College has created an allotment with 12 raised vegetable beds – 1 per boarding house and the plan is to run an inter-house gardening competition

From Jan all the boarding houses will be fitted with water meters and there will be the opportunity to measure efficiency in this area as well.

All the pupils’ sustainability efforts are rewarded in the second week of Summer term when there is a whole school gathering for a celebration of sustainability and to name the overall winner of the Golden Egg competition.

‘Sustainability week and other initiatives are creating a growing appreciation of sustainability and the opportunity to turn words into actions’

We recognize that we are not going to solve it all here, especially given nature of Bradfield’s old estate, it will be very difficult for us an institution to achieve Net Zero. Not going to solve it all here, but becoming more considerate of the impact – becoming engrained in your thinking and part of the decision making process even if it isn’t the main consideration

However, our broader aim is to educate Bradfieldians to be conscious of sustainability and to create a sustainability mindset within the pupils. We want them to become more aware and considerate of sustainability issues. We know that the behavioural changes we must make to be more sustainable are tough and through the inter-house competitions the pupils have experience of making the necessary changes. They very consciously have to make the decision to ‘do the right thing’, so they know what it takes and know that they can succeed in making a difference. Armed with this knowledge and experience they can take it with them beyond Bradfield, propose and implement changes in their workplaces and make more sustainable lifestyle choices. Ultimately, we hope that they will be the leaders who help to drive sustainability in their future careers.

In the last 5 years Bradfield has achieved a reduction in carbon emissions of 40%, which is a fantastic achievement and the drive to improve the infrastructure to save energy and be more efficient with energy usage continues. This year there is a major project to install solar panels to boarding house rooves.

Creating a more sustainable Bradfield is very much a community effort – ops staff, teaching staff, pupils and there is so much more awareness and interest around this, that people are increasingly making decisions that factor in sustainability and long may it continue.

To expand the remit further in Sustainability Week 2024 we intend to include the wider Bradfield community – the Bradfield Society – to bring together sustainability professionals amongst the alumni and parent body who are keen to share their experience of sustainability, to share best practices/ network with each other/ talk to pupils about careers in sustainability.

If you are interested in being a part of the sustainability networking group, email with the title ‘interest in the sustainability networking group’ and we will include you in our event communications.

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