A VETERINARY practice has won an award for its environmental contributions.

In the Veterinary Green Awards competition, which is organised by Webinar Vets, the Old Hall Veterinary Centre in Appleby reached the finals and won a prize for their efforts to reduce their carbon footprint.

Helen Gould, a vet and the director and owner of the practice, said she and her staff were delighted to have made it to the finals in the first place, and said of the victory: "The feedback was that we were chosen because we demonstrated a whole team approach with such enthusiasm and drive and we involved our clients and the wider community.

"It has definitely been a team effort.

"They also liked the broad approach looking not just at our emissions and impact within the organisation but outside as well with our volunteering, encouraging sustainable travel, et cetera.

"For me, I think the big change came when everyone started to think environment with every decision made.

"It's become natural to think 'how will that effect the environment and is there a better way?'

"This is how we all need to think, from the individual through all organisations and up to government to bring about real change.

"Obviously, we are over the moon and still trying to take it in.

"Hopefully this will inspire others to make changes in their workplaces, too.

"Anyone can do it and when we all work together we can create a brighter future."

Of their environmental pursuits, they have a composting initiative, a vegetable patch, a wildlife garden, and a scheme where if a customer or employee cycles or walks to work instead of driving, they get a tree planted.

They also measure their paper usage, and the amount of anaesthetic gas they use, which Helen said is a huge emission, of which the carbon used is equivalent to 520 times more than CO2.

Being more green is something close to Helen's heart, and she thinks that it's not something common for workplaces to be thinking environmentally.

She explained that while a lot of people are green in the home, it is not often though to bring that ethos into the workplace; something Helen thinks should be more popular.