Call for topsoil

Students at Fowey Community College are asking for a donation of topsoil for an innovative eco-project which aims to provide fresh produce for the school’s canteen.

Year 10 students Carys and Oli are the brains behind the initiative which will see 40 micro-allotments constructed from wooden pallets being planted with seeds donated by Ken Radford from People & Gardens with support from the Eden Project.

The project is the result of several months of planning in early 2012 with the help of the school’s eco-committee, comprising teachers and support staff who meet once a month to develop the school’s eco-framework.

“It started off small and now we’ve got loads of people signed up. We are hoping to extend this so that local people can have a pallet too and we can create a bigger sense of community in our local area,” says Carys.

Oli says: “We are offering the allotments to individual students or to groups and we have already got 45 students signed up. It’s a really exciting idea to be working on, and now that it is starting to take shape, we’re hoping that other local organisations can be involved in helping us.”

The eco-team will work closely with the school canteen, Cedars Cafe, taking peelings and other discarded food to turn it into compost, which can then add nutrients to the soil on an ongoing basis.

Alistair Griffiths, Eden’s Horticultural Science Curator, says: “It is great to see the next generation taking on such a challenge with so much enthusiasm and passion. I’m looking forward to seeing the results.”

John Perry, Headteacher, says: “I am really impressed Carys and Oli’s leadership of this project. It has developed from a small idea into a workable plan which involves businesses, the wider community and our students, and I would like to thank everyone who has helped with donations. I am looking forward trying some of the home-grown fruit and vegetables in our school lunches.”