A WIGAN schoolgirl is making a splash in her new role as young environmentalist for Manchester Aquarium.
Holly Chadwick, 11, has been elected to join 11 other youngsters to sit on an advisory board at Sea Life.
The St Benedict’s Catholic Primary pupil will participate in a host of environment activities designed to promote sustainable environmental practice.
Holly’s mum Louise, said: “She starts high school this year and is absolutely made up that she has won and it will keep her busy in the holidays.
“Holly is really looking forward to it - she can’t wait. She’s a bit of a pet lover and adores fish. There are tropical fish in her bedroom which she looks after everyday, this role is perfect for her. In fact we’re going next week so she can get stuck in and get a feel for it.”
The attraction opened inside the Trafford Centre in June and bosses started the search over six months ago to find their panel.
As part of her role, Holly assisted with the grand opening of the centre.
She won her spot in the centre after wowing judges by submitting an essay detailing why it’s important to protect the seas. She was also tasked with drawing or painting a picture of an imaginary sea creature.
Other winners are seven-year-old Benjamin Pitlovits, Anya Fourie, six, Ellie Roberts, eight, Cameron Saunders, eight, Lili Coates, eight, Bethany Walsh, 12, Jacob Hoyle, seven, six-year-old Ali Hussain Chowdhury, Fatima Mannan, 10, and Aimeelea Wells, aged nine.
Sea Life Manchester’s display curator, Lucy Handel was on the judging panel and was impressed with every entry, and, after much deliberation, helped to choose the twelve winners. Lucy said: “The standard of entries was really high, it is very clear that children in the area have a strong passion for marine life and an understanding of the dangers that each species faces in today’s seas.
“My team and I are really looking forward to working with the winners to help them learn about all of our animals and the important conservation issues that we currently tackle via our Breed, Rescue, Protect programme.”
Neil Crittenden, general manager for SEA LIFE Manchester, said: “Our children will inherit the daunting task of looking after our seas for the benefit of their own future children and their children’s children.
“It is really important that we work with this generation to help raise awareness of critical issues facing so many of these species.”
Sea Life Manchester aims to help visitors understand, empathise and feel impassioned about the 5,000 sea creatures. Holly will have the chance to see in more than 30 marine displays boasting over 1 million litres of water.
The centre recently welcomed its star attraction, Ernie, a giant sea turtle, to his new home, alongside sharks, rays and jellyfish, all of whom are settling in nicely to their new home and enjoying interacting with visitors to the attraction.
Bosses said it hopes it will be the catalyst for thousands of families to find out more about the issues facing the marine environment.
Research shows that aquariums like this play a major role in providing the best opportunity to see, interact with and find out more about marine life. Such opportunities greatly increase interest and proactive support for conservation activities.