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NHS Sustainability Project wins National Award

Posted on the 15th April 2014

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An ecotherapy project based in Central Lancashire has been awarded for their outstanding work and contributions towards NHS Sustainability Day.

Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust’s Common Ground Project based at Guild Park in Goosnargh, beat off competition from over 70 applicants to receive two awards at the national NHS Sustainability Awards 2014.

The project received the Sustainable Food Award which acknowledged their use of using locally sourced, seasonal produce on the menus at the hospital.

They also won the Overall Project Award for incorporating a variety of elements including community involvement, encouraging behaviour change and carbon management amongst others. The team were presented with their awards by Chris Packham, BBC broadcaster and renowned naturalist at a ceremony in London.

Elizabeth Harrison, Common Ground Project Lead at Lancashire Care, said:

“We are delighted to have won not one but two awards at the ceremony. The project officially opened its doors 12 months ago in celebration of the annual NHS sustainability day and it is incredible how far we have come in this short time. These awards are for everyone who has volunteered their time to help make it a success, I can’t thank them enough!

“The project started as a way of introducing sustainable food into the kitchen at Guild Lodge, as well as looking at ways we can reduce our carbon footprint. We were also keen from the start to incorporate service users into the project as involving them in outdoor activities is a great way to increase their confidence and support their recovery. Following the success of the project at Guild Park, we now work with several sites around the Trust on the design of therapeutic outdoor spaces for service users. We also work with local schools and community groups to educate them on the importance of sustainability and how to get involved using the simplest of resources no matter where you are.” 

As part of NHS Sustainability Day, the team held a roadshow and visited several Trust sites around Lancashire. On the day, staff had the chance to make pledges to reduce their carbon footprint and even took away wildflower seeds and food growing kits so they could continue the work at home.

Elizabeth continued:

“The roadshow demonstrated how much interest there is around the Trust in sustainability. We received a high number of pledges from staff, which varied from a selection of carbon reducing actions such as reusing plastic carrier bags to starting up a chilli growing competition. As well as staff, local schools got involved and pledged to create growing spaces to integrate into science lessons.”

Steve Jameson, Director of Property Services at Lancashire Care said:

“I am thrilled the project has been recognised for its work on a national level. It is a true testament to the dedication of all the volunteers in giving up their time to help improve the lives of not only service users, but staff and the wider community. These awards are the icing on the cake for what has been a remarkable year for such an inspiring project and I am looking forward to seeing it grow from strength to strength.  It was also equally satisfying to hear the Master of Ceremonies implore the attendees of the event to visit our Lancashire project, which was a very proud moment.”

To find out more about the Common Ground Project please contact Elizabeth Harrison on 01772 773578 or email