Torquay Museum, ‘Young Sustainability Champions’ 2013-2014

The ‘Young Sustainability Champions’ project developed a cohort of young community sustainability champions at Torquay Museum. To target a new 14-18 age range the project manager attended 2 secondary school assemblies and ran workshops such as a renewable energy trip, and an oceans workshop. The workshops culminated a festival and a mock court drama. The whole project was documented and evaluated with varied techniques and led to the creation of  new audio guides containing  young people’s hopes for the museum in 100 years.

The museum used collections for handling and as a catalyst for discussion and  utilised various museum spaces for many of the workshops. The champions inspired youth-led projects aimed at increasing understanding of climate change and delivering carbon reduction projects with communities, local authorities, businesses, schools and in the home.


The project vision was that TQM reinvented itself as a key cultural asset and significant hub for sustainability in the south west of England. Through our Happy Museum commission TQM redefined its principles and promoted understanding, stewardship and protection of the environment. TQM is now an influential campaigner that empowers communities to act on climate change.

Highlights included the project featuring on Podcast on BBC Devon to a quarter of the county’s population- and on Soundart radio which has national profile.   Coverage in the local press reached a circulation 70,000 and ongoing engagement was made with teachers and other specialists.

Challenges included working with a freelance project management which made it harder to create organisational change.