The National Trust - Best Green Event
|The National Trust - "A Plant in Time - A Touring Exhibition"
|Green Awards 2010
|Best Green Event
Background & Objective
‘A Plant in Time’ is an exciting, new, interactive exhibition touring National Trust gardens this year.
It aims to raise awareness of climate change and to help change people’s behaviour as a consequence. It does this through looking at the implications for the National Trust's collection of 200 historic gardens, highlighting that there’s no better place to start making a difference to the environment than in our gardens. The exhibition makes the link between the complex science behind climate change, translating this into something the average person in the street can understand, helping them visualize what our gardens could look like in the future and how each of us can make a difference.
Concept & Implementation
A pilot workshop provided the opportunity to assess public reaction to the exhibition and have people create flowers for a photo shoot. The images were then used for all pre publicity, including a marketing leaflet, distributed to National Trust properties. The images were also uploaded onto the National Trust’s photographic library, available to press and for publicity banners/materials; all used to help promote the exhibition.
‘A Plant in Time’ featured in the 2010 National Trust handbook, magazine and regional newsletters, distributed to all 3.7 million members.
Celebrities connected with gardening were contacted and asked if they would contribute a flower. Flowers made by Vic Reeves, Jo Brand, Joe Swift and Kim Wilde, among others, featured in the exhibition and were used to help inspire people to make their own flowers.
The project was aimed at people of all ages and backgrounds, the majority making up the visiting public to National Trust gardens, as well as schools (primary and secondary) and community groups, who were invited to their own specially designed workshops.
Over 20,000 people have visited the exhibition at 18 National Trust gardens nationally, alongside additional workshops at other Trust properties across England and Wales. A smaller version has also toured four major shopping centres in the North of England and the RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show.
Feedback from both visitors and National Trust staff and volunteers at properties hosting the exhibition has been overwhelmingly positive. Many visitors commented that although they knew about climate change in theory, the exhibition made the implications much easier to understand engaged them in the issues and encouraged them to take their own positive steps.
'A Plant in Time' had a budget of £50k which covered the costs of a project manager, the exhibition design, hire of a van, bio-diesel fuel costs, train travel for volunteer drivers, print and production costs, press and publicity. Working with enthusiastic and knowledgeable volunteers, who gained experience themselves from the project, enabled them to keep costs low.
The Judges enjoyed the creative idea of the campaign. They thought it was a very nice and engaging event, and were impressed by the statistics/numbers.
RSA Environment Awards Secretariat, IMS Consulting, St. Nicholas House 31-34 High Street, Bristol BS1 2AW
As one of the world's leading home improvement retailers, Kingfisher is in a unique position to help people create sustainable affordable homes of the future. A key focus of Kingfisher’s Future Homes CR strategy is to provide eco products, information and advice to enable customers to reduce the environmental impact of their homes.
Concept & Implementation
Kingfisher works closely with its Stakeholder Panel to ensure that its CR report addresses key areas of interest to its stakeholders. The current report covers 14 key issues which fall under its 7 Goals.
On Kingfisher’s CR home page, are linked to a number of ‘hot topics’ such as eco products and timber. To ensure the report provides a balanced account, Kingfisher includes a section called ‘areas for improvement’ (for each of the 7 Goals) and the summary report identifies key strategic challenges and its response.
Kingfisher’s CR Report includes a short summary report (printed and PDF versions) which provides a high level overview and a full online report (see www.kingfisher.com/cr).
This year, Kingfisher made a number of improvements to its online report in order to more effectively engage readers. For example, new features include:
- Home page ‘flash panel’ to provide a quick overview of its Future Homes strategy.
- Eco product stories featuring some of its latest innovative eco products
- Overview page showing CR highlights and a snapshot of group performance data.
- A range of video case studies demonstrating the eco transformation within stores at B&Q UK, Castorama France and Brico Depot France.
- ‘Create your own report’ section (within Resources)
- New interactive charting tool of operating company progress – so users can view progress either by operating company or by issue
Kingfisher posts regular updates on the site to involve readers in an ongoing dialogue. Each page includes a footnote to explain how frequently it’s updated and the period covered.
New design elements
This year, the online report was completely redesigned and rebuilt. The style is consistent with the overall redesign of the corporate website, but has its own distinctive design components. New photographs have been chosen to demonstrate sustainability in action such as B&Q UK’s new eco shops.
This website is designed and built to W3C accessibility standards and provides access to people with disabilities using technologies other than standard web browsers, such as screen readers.
Kingfisher is committed to working with its stakeholders, not only to provide information important to them, but also to create a two-way dialogue which enables the essential exchange of ideas and communication.
As a parent company, its main audiences are investors and CR specialists such as non-governmental organisations. However, as an international business, with over 78,000 employees and nearly six million people visiting stores every week, its potential audience is global and across all demographics.
Kingfisher has targets for each of its 7 Goals and reports annually on progress. This year, Kingfisher made good progress in reducing its store environmental impacts e.g. reducing its total CO2 equivalent emissions (from energy and transport) by 8% and cutting total disposed tore waste by 10%.
Kingfisher is now working with independent sustainability experts, Forum for the Future, to set long-term targets up until 2020.
Kingfisher’s Chief Executive, Ian Cheshire, does his own video introduction for the report each year – setting out key priorities from his personal perspective. Ian’s video this year was filmed in one of the first ‘eco shops’ within B&Q UK. Ian is one of the leading sustainable business pioneers, regularly participating in environmental news debates, conferences and panel discussions. Ian and other members of the Retail Board now have CR objectives linked to bonus payments.
The report also includes an introduction from Ray Baker, Director of Corporate Responsibility and Government Affairs.
“Kingfisher report is structured around a clear and powerful idea, ‘Future Homes’, which makes this report more than just a collection of targets and progress. Kingfisher demonstrates a good understanding of the role they can play on delivering a sustainable future.”
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