Putnoe Heights Eco Church
Putnoe Heights is a suburban church on the edge of Bedford. We have a Bronze award and are currently working towards Silver. We’re keen to share our experience of the Eco Church journey with our church members, our local community and beyond One of the ways we do this is through our use of our website and social media.
We’ve made it really easy to find Eco Church content on our website by including it on the top level menu. Our Eco Church page acts as a hub, with links to a section explaining more about Eco Church, back issues of our Eco Church newsletter (which is also printed for church members without internet access or who prefer print copies), our Instagram account, our blog, a news feed on our latest projects, and a link to the Eco Circuit page of our Circuit website.
Eco Church blog
Our blog is the home of longer form content on Eco Church themes. When we set it up we asked church members, website visitors and social media followers to tell us what kinds of content they’d most like to read. There was a spread, but top of the list were lifestyle tips, climate justice and local projects. putnoechurch.org.uk/eco-church-blog
We use Instagram to focus solely on Eco Church and our journey. We set it up hoping to engage people who are interested in environmental issues but may have little or no experience of church. It’s now our most popular social media channel with followers from individuals, churches, businesses and community environmental projects. Many of these are local to us but some come from further afield, including from across the Methodist Church.
In May 2020, A Rocha UK invited members of their Wild Christian email community to take part in the Wildlife Trusts’ 30 Days Wild saying, ‘One of our firm beliefs at A Rocha UK is that we are more likely to nurture and defend God's creation if we first spend time enjoying it.’ Using Instagram turned out to be a great way to take part, previously the feed had concentrated on photographs illustrating our practical steps towards a Bronze Eco Church Award but taking part in 30 Days Wild led to regular ‘Connect to Creation’ posts designed to engage with the themes of joy and wonder in creation. The use of hashtags such as #creation and #creationcare help us to reinforce the church character of the feed. instagram.com/putnoechurch/
Some of our most popular Facebook posts have covered Toilet Twinning, swift boxes (see right) and planting a hedgerow at the back of our car park. These resonate with our community who respond really positively to these practical projects. facebook.com/PutnoeChurch/
Facebook isn’t just a place for our own news, we also share content from others – for example environmentally themed prayers, links to e-newsletters from A Rocha UK or posts from other local churches showcasing their own Eco Church projects.
Shelly Dennison, Eco Church lead at Putnoe Heights Church