We are aware of the importance of environmental sustainability and continuously seek to improve our environmental and social performance.
In order for us to reduce the effect of our carbon footprint, we have implemented a programme of ongoing action to achieve this, which our guests can also be part of. Although not an exhaustive list, many of the things we do are listed below.
We were recognised by travel website TripAdvisor for our efforts and awarded a Green Leaders Silver Award in our second year (awarded Bronze the previous year), which very few B&Bs nationally are yet to achieve.
We have separate internal and external bins for splitting of recycling.
We recycle glass, card, paper, plastics, foil and garden waste and remove recylable material from bedroom bins.
Supply Devonia bottled water which is the only UK supplier washing, sterilising and re-using the bottles.
Once beyond re-use, they recycle them.
Plastic bottles are given on departure and we ask for them to be recycled responsibly by guests.
Our "Goodie Bags" are recyclable paper ones.
Empty aluminium coffee pods are recycled via Nespresso's send-back scheme (generally into drinks cans and car parts) and they turn the coffee into compost. They are made from 80% recycled aluminium and their machines come in fully recyclable packaging made of 95% recycled material.
Half-used toiletries are used by us, then put in the recycling.
Our flower vases are made locally from 100% recycled glass.
Glass jam pots and aluminium lids are recycled.
At the end of each season, out of date leaflets are recycled.
We now supply pillows made from plastic bottles - see Bedding section below for more info.
We don't use plastic glasses in the bathrooms, ours are glass.
We decant sauces into tiny dishes rather than offering plastic sachets.
We've use low or non-VOC an no oil paints throughout the building.
We encourage guests to help reduce their carbon footprint too.
Rather than individual cardboard cereal boxes we use cereals in Kilner jars. We also make
our own granola.
We provide reusable glass bottles of fresh milk rather than plastic pots of UHT milk.
Rather than buying biscuits in plastic wrappers we supply home made treats displayed in glass domes.
We reduced temporary wrappings like cling film by using long life containers to store things like bacon which can be washed between each use rather than discarded.
We make our own yogurts served in reusable glass jars rather than buying them in plastic pots.
Even Patsy's dog food is purchased in bulk to reduce packaging and transport.
Our egg trays are returned to Black Dog Eggs for re-use.
We like "upcycling" furniture rather than replacing it.
Many items have been sold to other B&Bs or given to charity rather than taking to landfill.
We are happy to fill guests' own re-usable water bottles.
Plastic containers from the cash and carry which have sweets in are re-used as cake containers and other storage.
Our cleaning products are diluted from concentrate, with the 5 litre bottles returned for re-filling. This prevents us having to keep buying trigger sprays as we re-use the trigger bottles over and over.
Our cleaning cloths are washed and re-used rather than using disposable wipes and cloths.
Rather than disposing of old towels they become rags for cleaning.
Tourist leaflets and maps in good condition are returned to the display case in reception for reuse by other guests.
We use email where possible rather than post.
We don't usually print registration cards as we gather guest information before arrival.
Rather than supply daily newspapers and current magazines, each room has an iPad with apps for them instead.
We print double sided where we can using recycled ink cartridges.
Printed waste paper is utilised on the other side for notes.
Our website is our brochure.
Weather and other daily information is displayed on a white board rather than paper.
Guests are not required to print or show confirmations of booking or gift vouchers.
Invoices are not presented in envelopes.
All our leaflets are available on line too.
Fitted the latest LED technology light blubs.
Many lights including external are on timers and/or dusk to dawn sensors.
New low energy boiler.
Radiators have thermostatic controls and we only heat bedrooms when in use.
We have no electric showers, all are pumped by mains water pressure.
Dining tables have glass tops to reduce washing of table cloths.
Double glazing is fitted throughout the house.
Having completely refurbished, many electrical items including fridge-freezer, dishwasher and washing machine are new and 'A' rated or above.
When floors, ceilings and walls were accessed for building work, extra insulation was installed including the loft.
Our towel policy - towels will not be replaced daily unless they are left in the shower tray. They will be replaced every four nights as standard, along with bedding.
Five out of six rooms are fitted with efficient heat pump air conditioning which provide efficient heating as well as cooling (3KW output for every 1KW used)..
Having had a feasibility survey for solar panels, unfortunately our roof is not suitable for them and the restricted benefit would outweigh the cost.
Our Nespresso machines have an auto power off mode and use only the necessary amount of electricity and water for the perfect cup of coffee.
There are motion sensors on most of our bathroom fans.
We now use Pozitive Energy to supply our electricity who source 100% of their electricity from renewable sources.
Our drawing room fireplace has a video of an open fire - all the enjoyment without the resources or emissions.
Energy usage is monitored monthly and also compared to previous years.
Smaller kettles boiling only required water.
New toilets have smaller cisterns and shorter/dual flushes.
Installed secondary hot water circulation loop so water is not wasted waiting for hot water to come through.
Only two bedrooms have baths to reduce water usage. One is a slipper bath chosen for its smaller water capacity.
Rain water is collected to water plants in our back garden.
We use an automatic watering system for our pots and hanging baskets to minimise wastage.
Some sink taps are designed to use less cold water.
All sink taps have flow restrictors to reduce wastage.
Our dressing gowns were chosen for their fast drying time.
Dish washers and washing machine are used on the shortest cycle for the task and use minimal water.
Food is sourced locally to reduce food miles.
Many items are homemade.
Food is carefully ordered and cooked to minimise waste and amount of refrigeration needed.
Most unused/leftover food is eaten by us and we make casseroles and soups.
Food scraps are recycled and collected by the Council
Cooking oil is disposed of in a sustainable way and turned into biodiesel.
Fruit past its best is turned into smoothies.
Fresh milk is replaced in bedrooms daily and we drink leftovers.
Our experience has led to carefully assessed portion control for filling meals but no wastage.
Bedding and Linen:
Our bedding (duvets, pillows, toppers, protectors) is supplied by The Fine Bedding Company who manufacture in a sustainable way to reduce carbon footprint (19% lower than industry average). 100% of its energy is from certified renewable sources and they have EcoFactory status.
At the end of 2020 we replaced our Spundown pillows with Smartdown. These down like pillows have microfibres manufactured from 100% recycled PET plastic bottles.
Our linen policy - beds are changed as standard every four nights. If you require anything changing before then, just let us know. However, we ask via a letter on your bed if you'd prefer we didn't change either your bed or towels. This reduces water, electricity and transportation via our linen company.
All curtains are lined for their thermal qualities but are also blackout to block the sun on warmer days reducing the need for air conditioning.
Our linen (sheets, towels etc) is supplied and washed by Johnsons Stalbridge who are working hard to reduce their use of plastic, energy and water, use biodegradable detergents, recycle water and old linen.
Local Economy / Social Awareness:
When refurbishing, we used local tradespeople and suppliers.
Use local companies such as the butcher and florist, reducing delivery mileage and packaging.
We pay supplier invoices within 48 hours of receipt knowing that cash flow is important for small business.
Encourage guests to spend money locally to sustain the local economy - promoting local attractions and special places to visit.
Literature from local attractions / restaurants / taxi companies are displayed in reception and on our website as well as regular social media links.
We support various local events, not only by attending and promoting them but paying for advertising.
We support local charities such as Animals in Distress based in Ipplepen.
We regularly visit local theatres including our community and amateur theatres , restaurants, shops and attractions.
Our jams and preserves are supplied by a company making them in small batches offering work experience to people with disabilities and learning difficulties.
We encourage the use of independent restaurants selling locally sourced food rather than chains, most of which can be walked to, including Venus Cafe on the beach front which aims to be the greenest beach cafe in the UK.
Where local suppliers are not available, we endeavour to use UK suppliers to reduce imports, for example, our guest lounge furniture was hand made in Wales by Sofa Sofa.
Litter picking in our local environment is done on a daily basis.
We have supported hospitality students at South Devon College.
We encourage the use of trains, ferries and buses, and provide timetables and maps.
Many places are in walking distance too, so guests often don't use their car at all whilst here.
We rarely use a car ourselves and able to walk to most places.
We are within easy walking distance of two train stations, and one mile from the coach station.
Bikes can be hired from Torbay Cycle Hire.
We provide directions for our favourite walks and umbrellas for the rare times it rains on the English Riviera!
As our cleaning liquids are diluted on site, the carbon footprint is smaller than if Chemex were transporting the water.
We encourage birds by feeding them in our garden and keeping wilder areas and plenty of trees and mature shrubs.
Many of the shrubs have berries and seeds which attract and feed the birds.
We have a fountain on our terrace which the birds enjoy, and a bird bath in our back garden.
We have plenty of flowering plants to attract bees.
Garden waste is composted. Larger waste is chipped by the local council, collected monthly.
We don't use any chemicals to control pests.
We have planted wild flower seeds in one area of our back garden.
How Our Guests Can Help & Participate:
Arrive by public transport / use public transport or walk whilst staying here.
Don't print out your confirmation emails (we don't need to see them), we already ask for
all your information prior to arrival to avoid the need for printing registration forms.
Turn off taps when brushing teeth.
Use the short flush facility on toilets.
Don't ask for your towels to be replaced / washed daily.
Take showers not baths.
Take your complimentary toiletries home to use them up.
Turn radiator thermostats down slightly.
Put a jumper on rather than turning the heating up and wearing shorts and a t-shirt.
Close the windows if you have the aircon switched on.
Turn the radiator down rather than taking a jumper off or using the air-conditioning.
If you wish to use the same pot of jam for a second day, let us know and we'll keep it to one side for you.
Turn your lights, TV and air-conditioning off when leaving your room.
Don't set your air-con below 22°C which is still lovely and cool on a hot day.
Only boil the amount of water you need for hot drinks.
Don't leave the fridge open for extended periods.
Use our external recycling bin for your rubbish or leave at the side of your bedroom bin.
We give guests the choice if they wish their bed and towels to be replaced half way through their stay (4 nights +).
Wondering where your waste goes that you throw away at The 25? Our local council don't send any waste out of the country. Here's where it goes:
Visit Devon Bronze Award for Ethical, Responsible and Sustainable tourism 2019
In addition to Torbay Council collections, we also pay for Suez Waste Management to take recycling away. This is what they collect:
Rather than any waste going to landfill, ours is only transported as far as Cornwall where Suez have a state of the art Energy from Waste Recovery Centre where they create energy for the national grid. The by product from the burning is then used in concrete block for building or into roads. Nothing goes to landfill, even the chimneys are filtered so well it only give off water vapour.