Sustainability

We are committed to making sustainable, environmentally-friendly decisions which benefit our school community and set a good example for students.

Led by the passion and drive of our students, we are building momentum in sustainability, with initiatives growing year-on-year.

Here are some of our current sustainability initiatives

Recycling

We are pro-actively looking at our school infrastructure, to minimise waste with great success.

Food: We have introduced food recycling in our canteen, keeping food waste out of landfill. Alongside caddies for recycling food, tea bags and coffee grinds in staff area, this has been a great success:

  • c.286,000 litres LESS waste going to landfill per annum
  • Cost saving of £3000 per annum

Paper: By increasing digital tech and providing recycling waste paper bins across our sites, we are maximising our paper recycling.

Plastic: We have replaced food packaging with compostable alternatives from companies such as Vegware. In marketing materials, we are transitioning to digital technology and where we do create resources, we have switched to more eco-friendly materials:

  • Compostable postage bags for prospectuses made from potato starch
  • Exhibition boards, display banners and graphics that are 100% recyclable
  • Paper print materials made by FCS accredited suppliers

Students planting in the school groundsRe-wilding

From biodiversity planting in our school grounds to planting new trees as part of the Woodland Trust’s Big Climate Fightback project and promoting the use of insect and solitary bee boxes – we have a range of activities underway to support nature across our grounds.

Transport

We encourage students to travel to school using public transport or by bicycle.

Cycling to school

Student arriving at schoolCambridge is a city famous for its love of cycling and at St Mary’s we are enthusiastic about encouraging our students to cycle.

Annual Bikeability sessions to encourage girls to develop road awareness, helping them to travel safely by bike. We have bicycle parks at Junior School, Senior School and Sixth Form and are members of the Travel for Cambridgeshire scheme which offers discounts at various bicycle shops.

In addition, we have negotiated a 10% discount for all repairs with Lensfield Road Cycles (please provide proof your daughter attends St Mary's School when arranging your repair).

Public transport

Our free St Mary’s Minibus service encourages girls to choose this option for getting to and from school. We have introduced new routes, serving all three Park and Ride sites around Cambridge. This service helps to:

  • Reduce the number of vehicles and the associated pollution and conjestion at drop-off and pick-up
  • Free-up busy parents from the daily school run!

We are located close to Cambridge Train Station, making rail travel a sensible option for older girls. As members the Cambridgeshire Student Connect scheme our Sixth Form students benefit from a 50% discount on rail fares.

Our location

Responsible development

We are continually developing our facilities to keep pace with the evolving needs of education. Our ambitious development plans include careful consideration of their environmental impact.

Long Road

Long Road Site PlanOur Long Road Sports Development project will provide new sporting facilities which will greatly enhance opportunities for our students to discover, experience and excel in a wide range of sports.

Working with Ingleton Wood Martindales Ltd., the Long Road scheme has been designed to minimise its environmental impact and the site’s overall carbon footprint. Measures include:

  • Installation of solar panels
  • Energy efficient lighting and floodlights
  • Protection of key wildlife corridors – particularly important for bats
  • Planting additional trees in the space
  • Dedicated conservation areas for enhanced outdoor learning
  • Anti-flood provision in the drainage scheme

More about Long Road