Students’ award-winning tips on how to save water

Amber Rudd MP and Southern Water Director Geoff Loader visit St Leonards Academy to present the winners' trophy for the Aqua Innovation Contest.'The pupils are Alfie Hubbart, Maz Geeson, Molly Fenwick, Charlie Edward-Smith, Kia Jackson and Charity Hammans. Picture by Nigel Bowles

Amber Rudd MP and Southern Water Director Geoff Loader visit St Leonards Academy to present the winners' trophy for the Aqua Innovation Contest.'The pupils are Alfie Hubbart, Maz Geeson, Molly Fenwick, Charlie Edward-Smith, Kia Jackson and Charity Hammans. Picture by Nigel Bowles

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A team of students have been praised by the town’s MP for their work on saving water.

The group from The St Leonards Academy spread numerous Save Water, Save Energy, Save Money messages to nearly 700 children from other schools and to more than 1,000 fellow students and staff at the academy.

Jessica Baker, Molly Fenwick, Charity Hammans, Charlie Edwards-Smith, Kai Jackson, Alfie Hubbart and Maz Geeson set up workshops in schools to explain why everyone should save water by turning off the tap when they brush their teeth and only use a washing machine with a full load.

They encouraged younger children to make models of miniature water butts so that they might learn water-saving messages in a fun and memorable way.

They asked all to pass on what they had learned to their families and promoted water and energy efficiency by sending press releases which were published in the Observer and also made a model of the earth out of recycled water bottles.

Their efforts won them Southern Water’s Aqua Innovation competition. They received a trophy, presented by Hastings MP Amber Rudd, Under Secretary of State for Climate Change, on Friday (October 3) and an outdoor pursuits holiday at the Lodge Hill Centre near Pulborough in West Sussex where they will enjoy activities such as abseiling and learn about the environment and sustainability issues.

The St Leonards Academy beat schools from throughout Sussex, Kent, Hampshire and the Isle of Wight in the competition.

Their teacher Emily Koseoglu said: “I am really proud of them. They have devoted up to six hours a week, much of it their own time, to developing this project and have worked really hard. This is a wonderful result for us.”

Ajay Sharman, regional manager of Stemnet which works with schools and businesses to inspire young people in science, technology, engineering and maths, said: “Southern Water has driven this unique competition for the past four years. It challenges students to invent new water efficiency methods and in doing so the company has captured the interest of the rest of the UK water industry which is now following suit and running Aqua Innovation competitions of their own.”

The Aqua Innovation competition is run alongside Southern Water’s five-year metering programme which began in 2010. The company is installing nearly 500,000 water meters across Sussex, Kent and Hampshire to help secure future water resources. For more information on Aqua Innovation visit: http://www.southernwater.co.uk/about-us/education/Aqua-Innovation/.