Northampton housing provider recognised for sustainability programme that led to ‘Muffin’ the hedgehog being fed every night

The hedgehog started visiting a tenant, daily, after the she was given a hedgehog house

Friday, 19th November 2021, 9:05 am

A sustainability programme organised by a Northampton housing provider has been recognised with a national award.

Northampton Partnership Homes’ nature project was awarded a Silver Green Apple Environment Award at a carbon neutral presentation ceremony this month, which recognises environmental best practice around the world.

The organisation’s nature project provided items to help residents care for the environment and local wildlife, and helped get them started with growing their own food.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

'Muffin' in the hedgehog house.

During the autumn, residents received hedgehog houses, bug hotels, bird feeders and nesting boxes, all designed to support local biodiversity and encourage children to take an active interest in nature.

One resident shared a photo of a little visitor who often visits her garden since receiving a hedgehog house.

She said: “I have been feeding this baby hedgehog, she comes every night for her food. We have called her Muffin.”

In the winter, a variety of small trees chosen for their colour, interest for wildlife or fruit potential were delivered to residents.

A number of these trees were donated to local schools including St James CE School and Malcolm Arnold School, as not all children have access to a garden at home.

The spring offering was growing kits including compost, seeds and tools, helping residents to get started growing their own food, even in small places.

Paul Tucker, sustainability manager at NPH said: “We’re absolutely delighted that the nature project has been recognised for this national award.

“Sustainability is high on NPH’s agenda, and we know that many of our residents share our commitment to improving the environment but can find it difficult to get started for a variety of reasons.

“This project allowed us to help more people reconnect with nature and experience the many benefits it can have on health and wellbeing, and we were so pleased that we could also extend the offer to some local schools.

“We were blown away with how popular this project was; all of the items were snapped up really quickly and we’ve had lots of really positive feedback.

“It’s been great to see photos and hear about the progress made, and we’re excited to be building a community of sustainability champions as a result of this project.

“They’ll help shape our environmental and sustainability activities and policies, which will be really positive for our local community and Northampton as a whole.”

The organisation hopes to continue its sustainability and nature programme and build on it following the award.