Excitement is building ahead of Edge Hill’s major new Sustainability Festival, which takes place next week. 

The University campus will be buzzing with activity between Monday 1 and Friday 5 November as students, staff, eco-friendly organisations and members of the public come together to share ideas on how to work and live more sustainably. 

The festival, organised to coincide with the first week of the COP26 climate summit being hosted by the UK in Glasgow, aims to celebrate Edge Hill’s dedication to advancing sustainability and encourage everyone to look at the world in new ways. 

Programme highlights include a talk by Joshua Styles, a young botanist and ecologist, Edge Hill alumnus and rising star in the world of conservation – having made regular appearances on programmes such as Countryfile, Radio 4, Sky News and Channel 4 News.

The 25-year-old said: “I’m passionate about preserving and promoting the natural world so I’m thrilled to have been asked to speak at Edge Hill’s Sustainability Festival.

“The University campus is a haven for plants and wildlife and it’s great to see the organisation actively promoting sustainability through this festival.

“My journey at Edge Hill University helped me gain all the experience I needed for my chosen career path so I can’t wait to head back to campus to share my thoughts on forging a career in sustainability.

“I’ll also be offering practical advice for anyone keen to do more to help the environment.”

A young man holding a little pot of plants stands on a hillside and smiles at the camera.
Ecologist and conservationist Joshua Styles.

Other fascinating talks include: How to Avoid a Climate Catastrophe by psychology experts Dr Laura McGuire and Professor Geoff Beattie – an interactive exploration of climate action behaviour; The Journey of Your Household Waste and Recycling; and a spotlight on the ground-breaking Coasts for Kids video series developed by teachers, artists and coastal scientists from around the world, and narrated by schoolchildren from the Merseyside area. 

The week-long Festival will explore a different aspect of sustainability each day – Move It Monday, Together Tuesday, World Wednesday, Thrifty Thursday and Footprint Friday. 

There will be a huge range of events and activities taking place, from campus tours and litter picks to dance and drama performances, and film screenings including Before the Flood narrated by Leonardo DiCaprio, as well as a marketplace hosted by organisations including Friends of the Earth and Martin Mere Wetland Centre. 

Event organiser and sustainability champion Professor Christopher Dent, who is excited to be welcoming the whole community to campus, will be launching the festival with a talk entitled What on Earth is our Sustainability Festival and the COP26 Climate Summit all about? 

A man wearing a blazer and ties smiles at the camera.
Professor Christopher Dent

“Sustainability improves society and makes the world a better place for us and future generations while protecting natural habitats and resources – we really want to highlight what we can do as a University, a community and as individuals to live and work more sustainably.

“I’m calling on you to come along, find out more and share ideas and to come away looking at the world in new ways.” 

SustainNET, the network community set up to advance sustainability on campus and throughout the region, is the main driving force behind the festival, sponsored by Edge Hill University’s Institute for Social Responsibility, to promote the message “Sustainability for All”. 

For more information about the Sustainability Festival and the full programme of events visit Sustainability Festival – SustainNET (edgehill.ac.uk).