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Dartford Science and Technology College raises funds to build food forest and greenhouse

A secondary school has raised thousands of pounds to help plans for an eco classroom to take root. The food forest and eco centre project is being spearheaded by Dartford Science and Technology College and the Healthy Living Centre in Dartford. Together they hope to to erect the unique classroom on an existing patch of land at the secondary school site on Heath lane.

The idea is to teach students about food production, plant life and soil composition, all while reaping the benefits of hands-on learning. Plans consist of a classroom space, greenhouse, composting toilet, water infiltration ditches and a food forest made almost entirely from edible plants. The building would also be sustainably constructed from straw bales which, unlike most building materials, absorb rather than release harmful greenhouse gases.

Principal Anne Davis said: "We have a really big site and we want to be more eco-friendly and sustainable and so started working with the Healthy Living Centre in Dartford two years ago. "It started with a small area of the site which started as a vegetable patch and then we realised there was a lot more potential to do something more permanent."

A fundraising campaign recently got underway and an initial target of £16,000 was met earlier this month. An additional £10,000 has also been pledged courtesy of the Aviva Community Fund which supports small charities and forward-thinking projects.

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