Burnley pupils preparing to grow their own vegetables to feed the community at their newly opened forest school

Home grown vegetables, tended by pupils at their new forest school in Burnley, are to be offered to the community to help struggling families as the cost of living crisis continues to bite.

Each year group at Springfield Primary School has their own vegetable patch at Spring Forest and the children can't wait to get started on the project.

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The vegetable plots are just part of the new forest school and sensory garden that was officially opened by the Mayor of Burnley Coun. Cosima Towneley.

Pupils at Springfield Primary School hold an owl at the opening of the new forest school at Springfield Primary School, Burnley

Shelagh Gulgec, who is secretary for Incredible Edible Burnley, said the group was looking forward to sharing its knowledge with the school and local people.

Shelagh said: " There is a pride and satisfaction in growing your own vegetables – and home-grown tastes better too."

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Springfield School is passionate about the environment and is preparing to host community events led by a range of experts under the 'Climate for Change' banner focusing on hot topics including conservation, climate change and recycling.

After planting a tree in the gardens the Mayor called on the people of Burnley to plant more trees in the town saying: " Planting the tree today was symbolic but it is also important.

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The Mayor of Burnley Cosima Towneley officially opens the new forest school at Springfield Primary School, Burnley.

"Trees help against climate change – they absorb carbon dioxide and add oxygen to the air around us. They also play an invaluable role in our ecosystems – providing home to wildlife and protecting soil and water systems.

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The Mayor also said she was delighted that the community would be able to enjoy activities in the new relaxed outdoor environment, adding: "Learning about growing your own vegetables, planting trees and recycling will also help people to manage as money gets tighter.

"Spring Forest fosters the development of a life-long relationship between people and the natural world. This encourages them to respect and care for nature which has a long-term positive effect on our planet."

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Headteacher Mrs Samaira Nasim said the new Spring Forest was a child centred learning process and regular sessions of play, exploration and supported risk-taking in a natural outdoor setting would get children active and learning.

Invited guests take a look at the opening of the new forest school at Springfield Primary School, Burnley.
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Mrs Nasim said: "Hands-on experience helps individual pupils to develop team working skills, improve their confidence and it also enables self-led learning of important life lessons.”

Pupils try out facilities in the sensory garden at the opening of the new forest school at Springfield Primary School, Burnley. Photo: Kelvin Stuttard