FSC | Field Studies Council

Field Studies Council: Bringing Environmental Understanding to All


Nettlecombe goes gold

Nettlecombe Court has achieved Gold status in the Green Tourism Certification Programme. We have been working hard to improve sustainability throughout the Centre, from the increase in LED lighting to the new dining hall servery that cuts down on food wastage. We were praised for our efforts to heat the building efficiently (no small task in a Grade One listed building!) and our varied selection of Fairtrade and locally sourced stock in our shop and bar. There is always more work to be done and improvements to be made; plans for the future include creating interpretation to explain our energy and waste monitoring figures to visitors and offering a wider range of low carbon choices at mealtimes.

Heated food servery, which significantly reduces food wastage

A Centre of Excellence

FSC Nettlecombe Court has become the first field centre in the country to be awarded Centre of Excellence status by the Geographical Association. 

The coveted award is part of the Secondary Geography Quality Mark (SGQM), a process that encourages and supports educational establishments to reflect on their work and strive for the highest quality in their teaching and leadership. It aims to promote effective subject leadership and management, helping subject leaders raise the standards of geography. In 2013, 64 schools were awarded the Secondary Geography Quality Mark (SGQM) and 12 schools have also been awarded the coveted Centre of Excellence status. These hubs of excellence are pivotal to the GA’s desire to spread good practice through the development of local networks of teachers. The Centre of Excellence award recognises a location’s contribution to disseminating quality approaches to the teaching of geography.

Alan Kinder, Chief Executive of the GA, says:
“There has never been a more important time for all children and young people to study geography. Growing up in the 21st century means living in an increasingly interconnected world, one facing a growing number of global challenges such as climate change and the need to live our lives sustainably. Geography not only fascinates and inspires young people, it provides them with the knowledge and understanding they need to live in the modern world. Geography is fundamental to everyone.”

The moderator for FSC Nettlecombe Court’s application noted “the extremely high level impact that the FSC Nettlecombe Court staff is having beyond Centre itself”. They went on to say “the partnership work with ESRI, GA conference workshops, articles and work on the GA Fieldwork and Outdoor Learning Group are all used to showcase powerful ideas in fieldwork and support teachers in their better understanding of the importance of fieldwork to enable students to better understand the world they live in.”

Nick Lapthorn, Head of Centre for Nettlecombe Court, says: “It is great to be recognised by the GA for the work we are doing at Nettlecombe Court. We work very hard as a team to ensure the enjoyment and satisfaction of groups that visit us, but we understand that the work of the centre and the charity has to extend further than our front doors to support and enable students to engage and understand their environment. Fieldwork allows the perfect opportunity for this to happen.”

Quality Badge

Nettlecombe Court, 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

Nettlecombe Court 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.