Press release: York Environment Week: 28 November – 6 December 2020

Outdoor events have been given the go-ahead for York Environment Week 2020, which begins on Saturday and runs until 6 December.

The festival, which coincides with National Tree Week, originally had 15 outdoor events for people to take part in practical activities, but it was thought these would have to be postponed due to the second national lockdown. 

Now organisers have confirmed that some physical events WILL be permitted, so long as social distancing and other precautions are observed.

It means activities with The Conservation Volunteers (TCV), including four volunteering sessions at Clifton Backies Nature Reserve and a gardening session at Hull Road Park, will take place. 

There will also be an opportunity to do tree planting and maintenance (including the removal of plastic tree guards and cable ties for recycling) with the John Lally Foundation Kimberlow Hill and Diamond Wood project on the University of York campus.

For those wishing to do their environmental activities from the comfort of their own home, York Environment Week has a packed programme of online events to join in with on the themes of energy, food, nature, resources and waste, and transport and travel.

They include the ‘revitalisation’ of One Planet York, featuring guest speaker Mike Berners-Lee, author of ‘How Bad Are Bananas?’ and ‘There Is No Planet B’; an opportunity to find out how beavers can help reduce flooding; a waste-free virtual lunch hosted by St Nick’s, and stories of food and resilience from Tang Hall.

Other virtual events look at the history of transport change and cycling in Amsterdam; a celebration of innovative housing design in York; how to build your own small solar panel systems, and lessons from Bishopthorpe’s popular annual recycling day.

Participants can also get “involved” with trees and nature without getting muddy or cold. Online options include a virtual tour of a tree trail in New Earswick, an introduction to Rowntree Park’s Forest School, and a talk by Greener Pocklington about engaging the community through practical projects to combat wildlife habitat loss.

The week, which features a total of 27 online and outdoor events, is organised by a team from York Environment Forum, which aims to celebrate and promote the work of local environmental groups. To find out more and to book for events, go to: or email