Festival celebrating Oxford’s work to tackle climate change set to return

Published: Thursday, 2nd June 2016

Oxford’s work to tackle climate change will be celebrated during an annual festival next month.

Low Carbon Oxford Week will take place between Saturday 11 June and Sunday 19 June and will see a host of pop-up events take place across the city. It will be officially launched at the Oxford’s Big Green Day Out on Saturday (4 June).

The event is organised by Oxford City Council, which works with partners, including the University of Oxford, Oxford Brookes University, Good Food Oxford, Environmental Change Institute and Community Action Groups Oxfordshire, to coordinate the events.

Low Carbon Oxford Week has been taking place since 2014, and last year’s events were attended by more than 40,000 people.

This year’s highlights include:

  • Oxford’s Big Green Day Out: The event will take place between 10am and 5pm on Saturday 4 June in Broad Street. It will feature local food and drink, music and entertainment, a cycling zone, upcycled and ethical crafts, arts and creative workshops, electric vehicles and lots more
  • Test Drive the Future: The event will take place between 11am and 4pm on Sunday 19 June in Magdalen College School, Cowley Place. A celebration of electric vehicles, the event will feature opportunities to test drive electric cars, build a solar-powered model car, meet Artie the Robot, enter a model car challenge judged by electric vehicle-enthusiast and Red Dwarf actor Robert Llewellyn, and much more.
  • The Big Green Treasure Hunt: The treasure hunt is an Oxford-wide trail between Wednesday 1 June and Thursday 30 June that enables families to discover the city’s hidden green gems and win lots of brilliant prizes, including a new Brompton folding bicycle
  • Author Robert Penn will discuss his love affair with cycling and the journey to build his dream bike between 4pm and 5pm on Saturday 18 June at Magdalen College School, Cowley Place

Low Carbon Oxford Week will also feature dozens more pop-up events across the city, from bike repair workshops, open gardens, farm visits and crafts to conferences, talks and art installations highlighting climate change.

Oxford City Council is committed to tackling climate change. Recent work includes the Low Emission Zone to tackle air pollution in the city centre, upgrading cycling routes and installing solar PV panels on City Council buildings.

However, the City Council is ambitious to deliver more and forthcoming plans include leading work funded by the Environment Agency and OxLEP to develop the Northway and Marston Flood Alleviation Scheme and installing electric vehicle charging points in the city funded by the Office for Low Emission Vehicles (part of the Department for Transport).

Councillor John Tanner, Executive Board Member for A Clean and Green Oxford, said: “Oxford City Council is at the forefront of tackling climate change in the UK – from upgrading cycle paths and introducing the Low Emission Zone, to winning millions of pounds of government money to build the Northway and Marston Flood Alleviation Scheme and install electric vehicle charging points for residents.

“Low Carbon Oxford Week is a fantastic celebration of everything the city is doing to tackle climate change, and a brilliant way of showcasing that work to show just how easy it is for everyone to go green.

“But of course there is still a long way to go. The air quality in the city centre, although improving, is still poor and there is a lot more we want to do as a city to cut our combined emissions.

“This is one of the reasons why Oxford City Council is working on a plan to devolve funding to the local level that would see greater investment in public transport, and making it easier to walk and cycle in the city. With control over transport decisions in the city, the City Council could do more to improve air quality in the city and help tackle climate change.”

To find out more about Low Carbon Oxford Week, please visit the Low Carbon Oxford Week website.