What better way to celebrate a 20th birthday than with cake and chocolate?
The 20th birthday in question was that of St Nicks (aka The Green Heart of York), of which I am a (very proud!) Patron.
The delicious cake was in the shape of the St Nicks environment centre building, and was made by Pam Mills, one of St Nicks’ Eco-crafters.
The fabulous chocolate is a special St Nicks edition made by Choc-Affair, which is located very nearby. The wrapper shows the site of St Nicks as it was 20 years ago, and as it looks now.
The birthday celebrations kicked off with speeches, from St Nicks’ Chief Officer Tom Waring, Deputy Leader of City of York Council, Andrew Waller, and … yours truly.
Preparing for my speech I looked back over my 12-year association with St Nicks, which started when I was invited to ‘come up with something’ for them about composting. What I ‘came up with’ was Compost! The (mini-)Musical, which we went on to teach to well over a thousand people (and perform to thousands more) around York, and which won a national award for innovation in composting.
I realised that what was special about St Nicks was not only the extraordinary transformation in the physical environment (turning a former rubbish dump into a Green Flag nature reserve), but also the transformation in people (myself included), that I have seen St Nicks effect, time and again.
So, that’s what I chose to focus on in my speech. I’m pleased to say that it struck a chord with many of those present.
You can find out more about the celebrations – and my speech – at the St Nicks website.
I’ll end this post as I ended my speech: ‘Here’s to the next 20 years of transformational work by St Nicks. And the 20 after that. And the 20 after that!’
P.S. The special St Nicks 20th-birthday chocolate bars are on sale in the St Nicks shop, which is located in the environment centre building. You’ll also find there a fantastic array of crafts made by the talented Eco-crafters who meet at St Nicks. Next time you need a present for someone, I recommend you drop in there. You’ll be amazed at the range – and quality – of the items on sale!