Scheme to make Merseyside ‘Green in 16’

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Woodland space in Liverpool which is a possible location for the Million Star Hotel. Pic © Million Star hotel

Woodland space in Liverpool which is a possible location for the Million Star Hotel. Pic © Million Star hotel

An environmental group in Merseyside is pushing through new initiatives in a bid to keep the region green this year.

Julie Ann Parker, from Whiston, runs a local non-profit social enterprise called Bang The Drum (BTD), which has produced a community engagement project to help engage the public with the outdoors.

She told JMU Journalism: “I know the environment can be used as a way of life-changing opportunities and I intend to do that through Bang the Drum.”

One part of this is a social media campaign, called ‘Greenin16’, that will launch at University of Liverpool on Wednesday.

The project, which is run in conjunction with the Merseyside Environmental Trust (MET), will ask local businesses and the public to choose one of 30 pledges that will help the environment.

Mrs Parker said: “All pledges are designed to help increase sustainability, generate social values and save money – whether it’s business money or saving an individual’s family money – that’s what we’re hoping to do.”

Also, as part of the scheme, BTD is hoping to open Liverpool’s first ‘outdoor hotel’, called the Million Star Hotel.

The group is still looking for areas to place the ‘hotel’, with the hope it can be running by April of this year.

The chosen area will provide team-building exercises such as bush-craft and survival skill courses. The space will also have an overnight hotel which can be used for family-themed activities.

Mrs Parker added: “We’re asking people to sleep outdoors and connect with nature whilst doing loads of different outdoor activities. We want people to become closer to the local environment, we’ll be offering bird watching, bat walks and growing projects, which will all come under the umbrella of the overnight hotel.”

Julie Ann, who has already raised around £1 million for the local environment, is in the process of talking to hotel brands such as Signature Living about the possibility of forming a partnership.

The website for the hotel will be running soon which will allow them to receive bookings.

About Jack Whitehead, JMU Journalism