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Good News – Making Progress

Good News – Making Progress

There are many ways in which the Diocese of Winchester are making progress towards becoming greener and more sustainable. Here are some of them…

Stories from Winchester Green Week

Winchester Green Week, which aims to promote the message that a sustainable future can be created by all of us growing greener together, took place 23 September – 1 October 2023. This was a week of events for everyone, organised by local communities, environmental groups, educational institutions, faith groups, local authorities and businesses in the Winchester District.

Christians in Hedge End Organise ‘Make Polluters Pay’ March

On Saturday 23rd September, 50 Christians from local churches took part in a protest, starting with an act of prayer and worship at St Luke’s Church on Grange Park, before walking to St John’s Church, via the Hedge End centre shops. The walk gathered people from all faiths and none and was to highlight the ‘Make Polluters Pay’ day of action, a campaign which aims to put pressure on the government to make the big fossil fuel companies pay, as they have promised, into the fund to help those most affected by climate change.

Celebrating Biodiversity and God’s Creation in Churchyards – A Case Study

We are called, as Christians, to care for the wondrous creation God has provided. For those responsible for churchyards and other shared spaces, this often means encouraging biodiversity, creating a haven for wildlife such as butterflies and bumblebees. In our diocese, an example of a church embracing this diversity is St Peter and St Paul, Kings Somborne. Parishioners decided to undertake a Wildflower Meadow Trial, despite a few initial reservations.

St Mary’s Bishopstoke Host ‘An Afternoon of All Things Nature’

To mark The Great Big Green Week 2023, St Mary’s Bishopstoke hosted an eco event for their community, with speakers discussing renewable energy, care of land for wildlife, and conserving bird species. There were also various stalls, as well as opportunities to plant, make leaf prints and do a nature trail treasure hunt.

A Report From the Christian Presence at ‘The Big One’

The Big One, an opportunity for people across the country to demand the end of the fossil fuel era, and a fair society that includes reparation, takes place outside Parliament each year. Many individuals across the diocese took this as an opportunity to present a united Christian act of witness for God’s creation.

The Young Eco Warriors of Our Diocese

The pupils and staff at St Mary’s Bentworth Church of England Primary School have been leading the way in the effort to reduce the carbon footprint of our diocese. The school has designated pupil ‘Eco Warriors’ who lead on several of the environmental projects, but ‘green themes’ run throughout each year group and the curriculum.

St Mark’s Kempshott Install New Green Heating System

When the heating system at Saint Mark’s Church Kempshott was condemned as unsafe, the PCC decided to replace it with a new system using BioLPG rather than fossil fuels. The gas now used is made from a blend of waste residues and sustainably sourced materials, making it an environmentally friendly option, and means a reduction in CO2 emissions by up to 85%.

Rally for the Earth at Winchester Cathedral

Winchester Cathedral held a Rally for the Earth as part of their Harvest Celebrations, with guest speaker Professor Robert Beckford, scholar-activist and Director of the Institute for Climate and Social Justice at Winchester University. At the centre of the Rally was a ‘Burning Bush’ installation that was lit during the event as those gathered made pledges and prayers to live more sustainably on the earth.

Winchester Cathedral Swifts

Swift boxes were installed in the Winchester Cathedral bell tower in 2020 and are now being used by these wonderful birds. You can read the Hampshire Swifts report about these nest boxes in their Winchester Cathedral update.

Eco Church Awards

In Winchester Diocese 66 parishes (out of 255) now have an Eco Church award – and the number is growing every month. There 2 golds, 20 silver and 44 bronze!

The number of parishes with Eco Church awards is steadily increasing each year.

Here’s the Full List of Churches and Their Awards – Congratulations to Them All!

St Thomas’, LymingtonUniversity of Winchester Chapel
St John’s, RownhamsAll Saints, North Baddesley  
St Lawrence, WinchesterSt Mary’s, Andover
St Leonard’s, Oakley Romsey Abbey  
Winchester Cathedral All Saints, Basingstoke
St Luke’s, Hedge EndSt Luke’s, Sway
St Paul’s, TadleySt Saviour’s, Brockenhurst
St Luke’s, BournemouthSt Mary’s, Tadley
St Michael’s, QuarleyChrist Church, Winchester  
St John the Evangelist, NorthingtonSt Alban’s Church, Bournemouth
St Mary’s, Old Basing  Ascension Church, Southampton 
St James’, West End St John the Evangelist Hartley Wintney 
St Barnabas, Winchester 
St Leonard’s, Sherfield on Loddon St Peter & St Paul’s, King’s Somborne 
St Mary, Longstock St. Leonard’s and St. Paul’s, Bursledon
All Saint’s, Fawley St Andrews, Owslebury 
St Andrew’s, Timsbury St Boniface, Chandler’s Ford 
Saint Martin in the Wood, Chandler’s FordAll Saints’, Hordle 
St Paul’s, ThroopSt Mary’s, Hale 
St Mary’s, Breamore Holy Trinity, Colden Common
St John the Evangelist, Hook St Thomas of Canterbury, Tangley
Christ Church, HatherdenSt Thomas’, Charlton
Saint Simon & Saint Jude, Bramdean St John’s, Moordown 
St Peter’s, YateleySt Mary’s, Sholing 
St Mary’s, BishopstokeSt Mary’s, Twyford 
All Saints, Winchester St Mary’s, Overton
Highfield Church (Christ Church Portswood)St Peter’s, Hurstbourne Tarrant
Parish of the Resurrection, AltonAll Hallows, Whitchurch 
St Catherine’s, Littleton St Mary the Virgin, Eling 
St John the Baptist, Alresford St Mark’s, Pennington 
St Boniface, Woodgreen St Mark’s, Kempshott 
St Swithun’s (LoveChurch), Bournemouth St James by the Park, Shirley
All Saints, Milford on Sea St Peter’s, St Mary Bourne
St Michael & All Angels, West AndoverSt Mary’s, Kings Worthy 
St Christopher’s, ThornhillSt Paul’s, Winchester 
All Saints’, Hook