Environment | Highfield and Brookham Schools
Our beautiful grounds provide a stunning backdrop and wonderful place for learning. We are committed to making the most of them, as well as protecting and enhancing them.
Whether learning Bushcraft, Wilderness First Aid or making Environmental Art, our pupils are involved in every aspect of our environment. We think ‘outside first’ and take every opportunity to take learning out of the classroom. We are custodians of our natural heritage, from our Brookham ‘Eco Warriors’, to actively managing our woodlands for energy production in our Biomass plant, as well as for its natural value.
Renewable Energy at Highfield & Brookham
We are always looking for more sustainable and cost-effective ways of maintaining the buildings and grounds. Environmental sustainability is part of our DNA. Highfield & Brookham uses Biomass Energy with a woodchip burning heating system; a sustainable system which utilises the woodland on our estate to produce energy to heat the entire school.
The woodchip burning heating system is considered to be carbon neutral as trees take carbon out of the atmosphere as they grow, which is replaced in the atmosphere as they are burnt, so there is no increase in atmospheric Co2 levels. The system is sustainable as the woodchip used for burning is derived from Chestnut coppicing on the Highfield & Brookham estate. Chestnut is naturally self-replenishing woodland and requires little, if any, replanting to maintain its levels.
We hope to inspire this generation to lead the way in looking after our natural environment for future generations to enjoy.
Headmaster, Phillip Evitt.
While the financial and environmental benefits of the Biomass to the school are clear to see, importantly, the children are also benefitting. The woodchip burning process, along with other forms of sustainable energy, have been incorporated into the school curriculum and all pupils visit the renewable energy installations as part of their study of this topic.
We are delighted to be part of the Eco-Schools program and have now achieved our Bronze, Silver and Green Flag Awards. As part of this all the children have explored the whole concept of “Reduce, Re-use, Re-cycle" and saving fuel and water. They have looked at environments that need our help and the idea of de-forestation and global warming. As part of this our Brookham Eco-Warriors work with a small group of adults; both teachers and parents to remind the rest of the school community how to treat and respect their world.
The Highfield Estate Plan
We are delighted that the Highfield Estate Plan was endorsed by the South Downs National Park’s Policy Committee on the 29th March 2018.
The plan covers the whole Estate (517 acres) and provides a detailed review of what we have in place and how we plan to continue to develop and improve in terms of our Ecology, Woodlands, Transportation and Schools. By working in partnership with the National Park they have gained an insight into our vision and ambitious plans for the Estate and Schools’ development which we hope will be beneficial as we put these plans in place.
The Estate Plan and accompanying documents may be found below and are also available on the South Downs National Park website.