Eco Church

Christ Church Southgate is registered as an Eco-Church – the first in the Edmonton Area to achieve a ‘Bronze’ Eco Church Award. We are working towards our Silver Award. Below are some of the ways that we have reduced our carbon emissions:

Reducing Carbon Emissions and Improving Energy Efficiency

As soon as Fr Chrichton joined us in 2015 he was keen to reduce our Carbon Emissions and improve our energy efficiency. Our Grade II* listed church is home to London’s largest collection of stained glass windows by William Morris & Company. Double glazing was certainly off the agenda! The most cost-effective way we found to save running costs and reduce CO2 emissions was by switching to LED bulbs. You don’t need expensive new light fittings do this, you can simply replace your bulbs! There is an initial cost of course – the initial cost of LED bulbs is higher than Halogen – but the pay back period is very quick. We switched the 55 bulbs in our nave from 100w Halogen Bulbs with 8w LED bulbs. The total installation cost (including labour and materials) was around£25 per bulb but the saving in running costs has been significant – around £90 per month. Added to this is a considerable saving on maintenance costs, because the lifespan of the LED bulbs is much greater than Halogen (50,000 hours comapred to 2,000 hours). We used to spend around £300 per year on changing the halogen bulbs – each bulb needing to be replaced by someone with ‘working at height’ certification. The cost of replacing the four bulbs in the chancel was in excess of £1000 due to the hire of the cherry picker! Whilst the installation cost just over £1,000 – the saving in running costs and maintenance means his was paid back in just over one year. We found it really helpful to work closely with our Quinquennial Inspector when choosing a new bulb. Each bulb has a different colour temperature – some LED bulbs are very ‘cold’. We wanted a warmer feel, to match the halogen bulbs. We installed a few test bulbs to trial over a few weeks to see the results before we switched every bulb in the nave. Since we made the switch to LED we haven’t had to change a single light bulb, we’re saving £1,500 a year in running costs and have signficiantly reduced our carbon emissions.

Biodiversity and Ecology

We were delighted when Teresa Walden suggested that we could use part of our church garden as an apiary – and even more delighted when she told us she knows all about bee-keeping! We now have two hives of honeybees at the end of the churchyard which Teresa and her team look after. Bee colonies are being lost at a growing rate and it was wonderful to be able to contribute to improving biodiversity. We are looking forward to sampling some of the delicious honey.

Working with other organisations to spread Energy Saving advice

We welcomed Mary Blake and her team from Groundwork to our May Day Fair, to promote SPIRIT – a home energy efficiency programme which uses faith groups to spread the word about how to help people save money on fuel bills, make their homes warmer and healthier and help the environment. Mary and her team handed out energy saving devices and information for free and helped visitors to complete an energy survey which she followed up.

Recycling and Composting

Whilst we try to minimise our use of resources, sometimes we need to do the opposite, due to competing priorities. A key drive to become more inclusive has been introducing weekly service booklets (rather than a separate service booklet and sheet) – to make it easier for people to follow the service. This means more paper is produced, which can mean more waste. Nancye, Pat and Pam are our excellent Cleaning and Gardening Team. Every Tuesday they take any left over service booklets for recycling. They also compost all our green waste for use around the churchyard and church gardens. We are very fortunate to have such dedicated members of the congregation.

Working with our local community

We have a great relationship with local community groups. During our 400th Anniversary in 2015 we invited Bishop Richard to help plant new seeds and a new oak tree in partnership with the Friends of the Minchenden Oak Garden, improving the biodiversity of the garden, next to the church. On the second Saturday in September every year we join with the Southgate Green Association as part of a “Ground Force Day”. We litterpick and prune around Southgate Green and our churchyard. Members of the congregation offer tea and coffee to volunteers. This year, the Southgate Green Association installed a living Christmas Tree on The Green. We led a special celebration including carol singing, to inaugurate the tree and were delighted with how many people joined us!

Ethical Procurement and Recycling

We are a Fairtrade church and encourage all who donate food and other goods to the church to consider ethical procurement. Nancye organises regular Traidcraft stalls in church and we encourage members of the congregation to make purchases before and after services. We also seek to make sure that the paper we use is from FSC certified forests and that we re-use and recycle wherever possible. We have a good relationship with local businesses who support our church by advertising in our magazine or supporting our fundraising events. The choir are a regular fixture in Ye Olde Cherry Tree (our local pub!) – Carol Singing there at Christmas! We encourage members of the parish to shop locally through promoting these businesses in social media and in our magazine. We also pray for local businesses as part of our cycle of prayer.

Public Access to the Churchyard and Gardens

Thanks to a generous anonymous donor and with the kind permission of the Archdeacon, we are about to complete the first stage of work to improve public access to our beautiful churchyard – which is a wonderful oasis in all weathers. We have replaced all of the rickety old benches with high quality, new, solid English Oak seats, with new dedication plaques installed. We have replaced the gates to the churchyard to make them easier to open using ‘throw over’ latches rather than bolts . This was an expensive project (the benches alone were£850 each!) and only possible thanks to a generous local donor to whom we are most grateful – but will allow more people to enjoy the churchyard. The next stage of the project will be to focus on soft landscaping and ecology.

100% Green Energy using The Big Church Switch
We used Christian Aid and Tearfund’s “Big Church Switch” campaign to switch the energy for heating and lighting our church to a 100% “Green provider. The bulk contract negotiated specifically for churches meant that we paid a little more per unit of energy but we are safe in the knowledge that our energy is being supplied from renewable sources. Find out more at https://www.bigchurchswitch.org.uk/

  • Sunday Services


    8am Eucharist
    10am Sung Eucharist
    6.30pm Evensong

    Tuesday

    7.30pm Eucharist

    Wednesday

    11am Eucharist

    Thursday

    12.30pm Eucharist

    Friday

    9.30am Morning Prayer
    5.30pm Evening Prayer

    Saturday

    9am Eucharist