FSC | Field Studies Council

Field Studies Council: Bringing Environmental Understanding to All


Renewable Energy - Low Carbon Vision Project

In 2010 The Blencathra Centre was successful in obtaining funds in a bid to the Rural Carbon Challenge Fund, with further match funding from the Field Studies Council and Lake District National Park Authority to undertake an exciting ‘climate change’ project.

The completed Renewable Energy - LowCarbon VisionProjectis now reducing the carbon footprint of the Blencathra Centre's buildings by 80% through the installation of a combined system of renewable energy technologies to supply heat and power, incorporating hydro and biomass systems.

All the capital works were completed earlier this year and the Renewable Energy Project was officially opened by the Rt. Hon Rory Stewart MP on Friday 18th July 2014

"It was an honour to officially open the Blencathra Field Study Centre's new bio-mass boiler as part of the Renewable Energy Project. It's an incredible piece of technology that has transformed the way in which the centre heats itself, and in the long-run will provide a reliable and sustainable income stream to support the centre in its fantastic work locally. It is another great example of the FSC leading the way in solutions that reduce their carbon footprint and energy costs, whilst remaining sensitive to the beautiful landscape and environment in which they are set." Rory Stewart

This was a great opportunity to say thank you to the local organisations and businesses that have supported the project from concept to completion’ over the last five years. Both the hydro and biomass systems are working efficiently and have allowed us to turn a financial energy deficit into a surplus. Coupled with reducing our carbon emissions it is a win–win both financially and environmentally.

Green Tourism

Green Tourism Award Logo

The Blencathra Centre was announced at the Green Tourism Annual conference on November 10  2014 as joint winner of the Best Activity Centre/Provider.  Andrea Nicholas, Director of Green Tourism, said: "The Goldstar Awards are a recognition of the best of the best in Britain when it comes to creating and maintaining a thriving sustainable tourism industry.A total of 60 green tourism businesses from across the UK were shortlisted for the Goldstar Awards this year out of more than 2,400 entries. These finalists represent the best of the best, the top 3 per cent of Green Tourism businesses in the UK”

Cumbria Tourism Awards

The Blencathra Centre received two environmental accolades in 2015. In June a Finalist in the Cumbria Tourism Awards (Sustainability) and in November FSC Blencathra were honoured as International Green World Ambassadors at a special presentation ceremony at the Houses of Parliament, London.This recognition comes as a result of the environmental success of our Renewable Energy Project, which has won an International Green Apple Environment Award.

“This training facility is located in an inspiring but challenging location, 300 metres up the Blencathra slope. Being off-grid for heating has given it high running costs, but a multi-faceted sustainability project has changed all that. Power is now supplied from a new hydro-electric installation over a mile away, and heating is provided by locally sourced biomass. Savings in costs and pollution, as well as the education opportunities, are mounting.”

We helped with Nurture Lakeland with their Action Plan for Low Carbon Tourism and production of The Low Carbon Cottages Toolkit  https://nurturelakeland.org/our-impact/research/low-carbon-cottages and contributed to CaFS Green Build Festival. We have installed an electrical charging point (funded from FSC Green fund) to accommodate our 2 Electrical Twizzy’s which were part of a successful centre bid to the ‘See More Programme Project Update - Project 3 Low Emission and Electric Vehicles’

Cumbria Business Environmental

The Centre has maintained the Cumbria Business Environmental Network Gold Award (Receiving an external audit score of 97%, the highest in Cumbria) as well as the Gold Award in the national Green Tourism Business Scheme (external audit 87%).

Green Apple Environment Award

The Blencathra Centre won a Green Apple Environment Award in the international campaign to find the greenest companies, councils and communities.

They competed against more than 500 other nominations in the Green Apple Awards for Environmental Best Practice, and they will be presented with their trophy and certificate at a glittering presentation ceremony in the Houses of Parliament, London on Monday, November 16.

As a result of this Green Apple Award success, they have been invited to have their winning paper published in The Green Book, the leading international work of reference on environmental best practice, so that others around the world can follow their example and learn from their achievement.

They could also progress to represent their country in the Green World Awards, and the European Business Awards for the Environment.

The Green Apple Awards began in 1994 and have become established as the country’s major recognition for environmental endeavour among companies, councils, communities and countries. 

The awards are organised by The Green Organisation, an independent, non-political, non-activist, non-profit environment group dedicated to recognising, rewarding and promoting environmental best practice around the world.

The Green Apple Awards are supported by the Environment Agency, the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health, the Chartered Institution for Wastes Management and other independent bodies.

Quality Badge

Blencathra, like all FSC Centres, has been awarded the Quality Badge by The Council for Learning Outside the Classroom by demonstrating that they consistently deliver high quality teaching and learning experiences and manage risk effectively.

Food Hygiene

Blencathra have been awarded the Food Hygiene 5 rating, for our meals, service, style and quality in the kitchen.

Carbon Trust

The FSC have achieved the Carbon Trust Standard.

The Carbon Trust Standard for Carbon publicly recognises an organisation's efforts in reducing carbon emissions and provides tangible proof to its employees, customers and suppliers that it is committed to making future reductions.