Wigan borough schools light the way to climate action

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Two local schools are having their artwork seen and voices heard by world leaders and climate experts at the upcoming COP26 summit in Glasgow.

Pupils from Westleigh Methodist and Bedford Hall Methodist primary schools in Leigh, have contributed their artwork and voice messages to an interactive sculpture in Glasgow Botanical Gardens.

The 20,000 piece artwork is called “Moths To A Flame” and is intended to highlight both the need for greener energy sources and the impact that humanity is having on biodiversity.

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The Gaia earth sculptureThe Gaia earth sculpture
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School chaplain Vicky Tyrrell said “We are all aware of the sobering facts of climate change and the emergency situation we face.

"But we also understand how the power to change the situation is in our hands, by making changes to our own lives and by speaking truth to those who can make international lasting change.

"It’s so important that the COP26 participants hear what our children and our community have to say.”

As well as the Glasgow sculpture, Westleigh Methodist have made their own mini-version which is currently on display at school for the duration of COP26 and will then travel to Pennington Flash to accompany internationally renowned Luke Jerram’s stunning “Gaia” Earth sculpture.

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QR technology means viewers of the sculpture will also be able to hear the children’s messages and add their own.

Westleigh Headteacher Karen Chadwick said “The children have loved being part of this COP26 art project.

"We have dedicated learning time right across school to develop a greater understanding of climate action and the children are thrilled that their art work has sent a joint message to global leaders, a huge achievement.

"Our children have learned that their voice matters and they can make a difference in our world by being courageous advocates.”

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Y1 teacher Amy Hilton added “We are looking forward to seeing our sculpture on display at Pennington Flash alongside British artist Luke Jerram, especially as we have all seen his amazing artwork on TV as part of the COP26 coverage. The 2 sculptures will illustrate how people from all walks of life can work together for climate action”

The children’s moths were carefully made from plastic waste generated in an average week between the schools and the pupils homes. This creative process has provoked thinking and discussion about other ways to further reduce, re-use, and recycle between the 2 schools.

Luke Jerram’s “Gaia” and Westleigh Methodist’s “Moths To A Flame” can be viewed between Fri 19th - Sun 28th Nov as part of Wigan Council’s Light Night.

During the day it is open access, but after dark when the sculptures are lit, the free event is ticket only.Want to see fewer ads? Subscribers to Wigan Today get access to the ad-lite version of our website, which features 70% fewer ads and faster load times for a better experience. Find out more here

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