Friday, 22 July 2011

TFL Cycle Challenge 2011

You may have noticed the 2011 Tour de France underway over the last few weeks but here at Greenwich there’s been a big old collective cycle taking part in the form of the TFL Cycle Challenge. The challenge is now over and the University of Greenwich team has clocked up an impressive 8,454 miles! This is the equivalent of burning 422,700 calories or 1,409 cupcakes and an estimated carbon dioxide saving of 4.227 tonnes.

There were some outstanding individual efforts but all 40 members of staff who logged their miles can be proud to have made a significant contribution to the total score and amassing an average of 211 miles per person! In the 11-50 members category the University of Greenwich finished in 11th position out of 152 teams. Barclays took the top prize in the category with a rather impressive 15,278 miles, quite a feat but I'm sure they will feel the force of the University of Greenwich breathing down their neck next year.

The top ten riders in the University of Greenwich team were:

1st Yellow Jersey (General Classification) Winner: Matt Prichard from CMS - 672 miles
2nd Green Jersey (Sprint Points) Winner: Tom Barnes Deputy Vice Chancellor - 604 miles
3rd Polka-dot Jersey (Queen of the Mountains) winner: Kat Thorne from Sustainability - 573 miles
4th White Jersey (Best young rider!) winner: Neil Garrod Deputy Vice Chancellor - 512 miles
5th: John Bailey from Sustainability - 503 miles
6th: Simon Charlesworth from Accommodation -477 miles
7th: Simon Walker from the EDU - 384 miles
8th: Adele Brooks from FM – 347 miles
9th: Justine Cooper from Architecture & Construction – 337 miles
10th: Gesche Heubner from Architecture & Construction – 309 miles

Every time I see an adult on a bicycle, I no longer despair for the future of the human race. - H. G. Wells

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Guest Blog for the Guardian

Today the University of Greenwich Sustainability Champions ended up on the Guardian Higher Education Network. In a blog post written by the University's Sustainable Projects Officer, John Bailey writes about some of the fantastic tasks completed by the champions and the impact they have had in influencing change at the University.

You can see the article on the Guardian website here:

The Higher Education Network has all sorts of brialliant bits and pieces from the sector so make sure you sign up to follow their news and events.

Friday, 15 July 2011

Wildflower Meadows at Avery Hill

A couple of months ago several hundred square meters of campus were seeded with wildflower and many of the grass areas had their mowing schedules relaxed. This lunchtime I headed out with my camera to see how they were getting on.

A Butterfly rests in the shade next to the Shuttle

Section of the field at Avery Hill seeded with phacelia wildflowers

Looking across the area in the sports field that has had the mowing schedule relaxed

Greater willowherb growing next to the Shuttle

A thistle grows in the long grass looking towards the Southwood Site

A bumble bee on the hunt for pollen

Two bees working away at our wildflower patches next to Fry Building

A bumblebee searching for nectar in a lavender bush

Thursday, 7 July 2011

Meet Camilla our Beekeeper

Camilla Goddard and the Greenwich bees - Photo: Courtesy of Ben Mostyn & Anya Rice at Superimpose Magazine
If you head accross to Superimpose Magazine at you will see a wonderful set of photos of the Greenwich bees and out resident beekeeper Camilla Goddard. There is a short interview with Camilla where she describes how she became a beekeper and plots out her day to day activities during the summer months. You can also see Camilla in action by watching the short video embedded below.

Capital Bee from Superimpose Magazine on Vimeo.

Friday, 1 July 2011

Bike Week and TFL Cycle Challenge

With the sun shining this summer we've been going bike mad here at the University of Greenwich! Last week was bike week and to celebrate we organised a whole mutitude of events including a 'bike bus' for new cyclists to commute into work with a more experienced rider, staff led bike rides and we also bought new cycle repair equipment for the three campuses. You will now find a track pump, puncture repair kit and essential allan keys and spanners at each campus gatehouse.

At the Medway Campus Keith Tomlins took a break from his work at the Natural Resources Institute to lead a ride around  St Mary's Island taking in the local sights and a little local history too. Amongst the keen cyclists on the ride there was a Mr Mark Johnson who is the Transport Strategy and Initiatives Manager from Medway Council. Mark was keen to point out how the local council has a number of schemes to support cycling in the Medway region, including locally led rides around the area.

The medway riders in front of the famous red tomato!
The photo shows Upnor Castle in the background and the famous giant tomato. On closer inspection it appeared to be a bouy! Everyone on the ride commented about how they enjoyed the mixture of cycling and history and we shall be looking to organise more rides like this soon.

In other cycling related news the University of Greenwich has been storming up the league table in the TFL Cycle Challenge and is now in 4th position for the 11-50 members category. So far 50 cycling staff have clocked up over 4,000 miles. Our target is to beat last year's effort of 10,500 miles and with a few long rides by staff members this weekend we could be on track to beat our prevoious year's record!