Eco Festival comes to Sunderland City Centre

29 September 2023

A FESTIVAL of sustainability will be taking place in Sunderland in October.

Delivered in partnership with Sunderland City Council, Climate Action North and supported by Sunderland BID and Sunderland Business Partnership, EcoFest Sunderland will take place over two days next month.

The first event for local businesses will take place in City Hall on Thursday, October 12 and will be followed by a fun day in Sunderland Museum and Winter Gardens on Saturday, October 14 for residents and families. The second edition of EcoFest Sunderland aims to help the city achieve its goal of becoming a carbon-neutral city by 2040.

Thursday’s programme of events for Sunderland companies - which is part of the three-day Sunderland Business Festival - will include sessions from climate science to Carbon footprinting advice and tips on first steps towards greener ways of working.

Speakers including Sunderland AFC’s Chief Operating Officer and Knight Frank’s Assistant General Manager will participate in a Climate Action North ‘Net Zero Matters’ session, and colleagues will be on hand to signpost further support.

Saturday’s event will see families and residents partaking in a range of fun activities at the Museum & Winter Gardens while also learning more about the environment and sustainable living.  The free day will include arts and crafts activities with textiles and recycled materials as well as an eco-trail around the Winter Gardens. There will also be stalls and stands with information and activities on local growing, cycling and walking, recycling and waste and energy efficiency support.

Outside in Mowbray Park, guided Nature Walks looking at biodiversity will also take place with Climate Action North as well as active travel e-bike sessions.

Cllr Graeme Miller, leader of Sunderland City Council, said: “We are thrilled to announce that the EcoFest Sunderland event is returning for a second year, and we are looking forward to what should be two great days and a real opportunity for all of us to learn more about climate change and the small steps we can all take to make a difference.

“We must all act now if we are to rise to the challenge of fighting climate change and events such as this will be key to encouraging and supporting our businesses and residents as well as shining a light on the work we all need to put in to help achieve net zero.”

Sharon Lashley, founder of Climate Action North East, said: “We’re thrilled to partner with the City Council for EcoFest Sunderland and, through our One Small Change roadshow, we’ll be on hand to support and inspire people to make one small change, such as saving energy and water, reducing waste, or rewilding their gardens, to help the planet and ensure the environment is safe for future generations.”

Sharon Appleby, Chief Executive of Sunderland BID, said: “Sunderland is home to so many inspirational businesses that take such pride in making it a better, greener city and this is evidenced by the success of schemes such as Refill Sunderland which launched in 2022 to reduce plastic waste and keep our oceans clean.”

Steve Davison, Chief Operating Officer at Sunderland AFC, said: “Sunderland AFC wants to have a leading impact on our joint ambitions to cut carbon emissions and reduce climate change. Throughout our organisation, we have a series of measures and programmes in place – and planned – that will contribute to a more sustainable future for the Club and the environment.

“We are a Club that thrives on working with partners, supporters, neighbours, local councils and other stakeholders, and we understand the important role we play in the community. We are excited to share with others at this year’s Sunderland Business Festival and EcoFest.”

For more information on EcoFest Sunderland, visit and for more on Sunderland Business Festival, and to see the full programme, visit