Net Zero Carbon at Chedworth: stories from the Diocesan Education News

Published: Tuesday March 30, 2021

environment, chedworth schoolNet Zero Carbon project at St. Andrew’s C.E Primary School Chedworth


St Andrew’s Church of England (VA) Primary School in Chedworth is set to become one of the first net-zero carbon schools in the country.

It has been awarded a £120,000 as part of the Government’s Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme. Read more about their plans here.

Following a recent article in the Diocese of Gloucester Weekly Bulletin, we spoke to Nikita Smith (Headteacher) and Matt Fulford (local energy consultant and associate member of the governing body of the school) about their Net Carbon project to find out more. We are delighted with what they were able to share with us all.

The school has a long held desire to provide excellent education to the pupils in a way that does not harm their future through unsustainable practices and contributing to the climate and biodiversity crisis. This project will ensure that the school is net zero carbon, meaning that it will not contribute to adding more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. It will achieve this by first reducing the amount of energy the school needs through installing LED lighting with movement sensors. Insulation in the building will be enhanced so that it retains its warmth and is draught free through insulating under the Victorian timber floors, adding cavity wall insulation into the 1970 extension and adding in new insulated ceilings. All the remaining single glazed windows will be replaced for well-sealed double glazed versions. Finally, the school will be removing its oil boiler and tank and replacing its heating system with an air source heat pump powered in part from solar panels being installed on the hall roof with a battery storage system. The project is hoped to inspire the whole school community to think about actions they can take in their lives to reduce their emissions. Furthermore, to help support this the project the school is looking to install an electric vehicle charger so those that must drive to the school have the option of doing this in a low carbon way.


Matt Fulford, who is the governor leading the project commented “With a 2030 target for the Church of England to be net zero carbon, this project at St Andrew’s shows that even with rural schools on oil, it is possible to achieve this today and create a cleaner future for the pupils.”


Nikita said ‘‘I have been inspired by the steps our school has taken to become Net Zero Carbon. Here at St Andrew’s Church of England school, we show children that all can contribute towards change – and that change can happen on their doorstep.’’


The church of England as well as the Diocese of Gloucester is committed to the target of becoming net zero in all parts of the church including schools by 2030. I am delighted that this project along with other carbon reducing projects in other schools and churches will be supporting this target.



Update: the school is now completed! Watch now:

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