Some BIG green reasons to stay in Winchester this summer

You can help Winchester achieve a 20% reduction in its carbon emissions by 2012 by taking part in Winchester's BIG Green Summer from May to October.

The initiative is headed up by Winchester City Council and Winchester Action on Climate Change on behalf of the Winchester District Strategic Partnership. It links with the work being done to get local organizations to sign up to The Winchester Declaration on Climate Change.

The BIG Green Summer seeks to incorporate a range of fun and inspiring activities taking place this summer, with the aim of encouraging greener lifestyles and promoting ways to reduce individuals’ carbon footprints.

To inspire people to eat locally, Winchester's City Mill will be demonstrating recipes using flour from local wheat, milled with water power as part of the DEFRA-funded ‘Eat into Green Living’ project. There will also be a choice of local food shows and markets to visit this summer, including the return of the Winchester Food and Produce Show at the Guildhall on Sunday 25 July, 10am – 4pm.

On Sunday 25 July, residents will be invited to try 20 minutes of walking, jogging or cycling at 12 minutes past every hour at North Walls Recreation Ground, Winchester (from 12noon until 5pm).

Elsewhere, the local ‘It’s ok to play’ woodland programme provided by the City Council and Forestry Commission will provide summer activities for all the family without the need to travel far.

Cllr Eleanor Bell, Winchester City Council’s new Portfolio Holder for High Quality Environment, said: “Winchester’s Declaration on Climate Change is a serious response to the threat of climate change.  The City Council is keen to identify the potential benefits, both social and economic, to the Winchester area, of developing a low carbon society. The BIG Green Summer is just one of the many ways we hope to demonstrate that low carbon living can be stimulating, easy and exciting. The activities and events offered throughout the summer will, I hope, inspire residents to sign themselves up to the 20% Carbon Challenge and reduce their carbon footprints by 20% by 2012.”

Chris Holloway, of WinACC, said: “Climate change is everyone's issue – collectively we can make a difference. We are delighted to be working with so may organisaions to cut the carbon footprint of Winchester District of 20% by autumn 2012 and one-third by 2015. The Big Green Summer shows there are plenty of ways to enjoy ourselves without creating greenhouse gasses.”

To celebrate Winchester’s first BIG Green Summer, Winchester Tourist Information Centre is giving away a free organic cotton bag to their first customer each day from the 29 May until 30 September. You can also win a Winchester bag by completing the BIG Green Summer Word Search (also available from the tourist information centre) and entering a free prize draw. The tourist information centre is open Monday to Saturday from 10am to 5pm, and Sundays and Bank Holidays from 11am to 4pm. For further information call: 01962 840 500 or email

For a full list of events and further information, visit