Eco Vikings invade Merseyside schools

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EcoVikings with replica boat

Eco-friendly Vikings are planning to invade the schools of Merseyside, delivering warnings on climate change with a twist of history.

The project organisers at ecoVikings are hoping to engage and inspire children on ways to stop global warming and to teach them how the planet’s climate is changing.

Spokesperson of the scheme, Dean Paton, told JMU Journalism: “Climate change is a dry and difficult subject, especially when teaching about carbon emissions. We hope to fire people’s imagination. We are making changes now to stem the problems that only children can stop. They are next generation, the next politicians and leaders.”

Through visiting schools, pupils will sign the ecoViking pledge with their names and list something they vow to do differently that will benefit the environment. In return they will receive a Viking gift, such as a silver coin.

EcoVikings has been organised by Mersey Travel and funded through the Climatlantic, wanted a new and innovative idea, which prompted the Viking theme, as the Norsemen relied on wind and water power, which is relevant to today’s society.

Mr Paton told JMU Journalism: “Merseyside has a strong connection to Viking settlers, especially in the 10th Century. As well as it being exciting and a fun choice for children, with them wearing helmets and carrying big axes, they were very eco-friendly. The Vikings recycled, never used more than they needed and insulated their houses.”

The company used an iconic boat as its centrepiece, which is an exact replica of the Viking craft that was found in Scotland. The two-man Ardnamurchan Burial Boat was used in the launch and will be taken on a tour of local schools.

Mr Paton added: “It was fantastic. It’s not every day you get to see a Viking sailing in a boat in Merseyside. The crowd was inquisitive and curious about what was going on. We hope it has raised awareness and has spread a message.”

The ecoViking scheme will start touring Merseyside schools over 10 days, which includes two schools in each of the Liverpool, Sefton, Knowsley and St Helens areas. The boat will be on display at the Museum of Liverpool on November 24/25.

About Hannah Ashraf, JMU Journalism