AIM: To lead and support the city of Peterborough in establishing itself as “the UK’s Environment Capital”; to act as an examplar of how to deliver truly sustainable growth in order to improve the overall quality of life of its people, communities and environment.
BACKGROUND: Peterborough Environment City Trust (PECT) is an independent charity, set up in 1993 to respond to the challenge set by Peterborough’s designation as one of four UK Environment Cities, along with Leeds, Leicester and Middlesbrough. PECT delivers a range of projects, working with over 200 different partners from both the private and public sectors.
- The Peterborough Curriculum: Working with the Royal Society of Arts (RSA), the Peterborough Curriculum Project is establishing a network of local schools and organisations who will design parts of their own school curriculum. The project intends to engage a wide range of people and organisations in the city to provide young people with a curriculum that reflects local priorities and values. By connecting more local people with education, and by connecting young people in the city with their local area, the project hopes to encourage civic participation and activity across multiple generations.
- Sustainable business: PECT works with hundreds of businesses in Peterborough and across the East of England to help them reduce their carbon footprint whilst also increasing profits.
- Sustainable communities: PECT has a range of community-based projects intended to enable local people to live in a greener way and encourage a feeling of community spirit between neighbours. As part of the RSA Sustainable Citizenship project, 25 Peterborough residents pitched their ideas to a panel of judges in October 2010, with two awarded seed-funding and non-financial support to allow them to become pilot projects. One pilot intended to encourage a wider segment of the community to manage local plots of unused land, whilst the other encouraged residents living near an area of ancient woodland to take an active forest management role. The woodland had previously been relatively neglected, with frequent reports of antisocial behaviour, and so the community decided to create a woodland walk that could make walking through the forest a normal activity for local residents.
- Climate change: PECT is also working with Peterborough City Council to educate local people and encourage action to mitigate the effects of climate change.
- Sustainable transport: the Peterborough Green Wheel provides 45 miles of continuous cycle routes around the city, which is complemented by Peterborough’s efforts to make travelling by public transport, walking or car sharing more accessible. Peterborough is one of three UK Sustainable Transport Demonstration Towns.