We are blessed to live in a beautiful part of a beautiful country and want to do our best to make it even better for our children. We have been striving for many years to make our lives more sustainable and hope to carry on this journey for years to come. Here are some of the things we have done to become a more sustainable Bed and Breakfast, and we continue to do more.


Putting a Big Jumper on our House

When we moved into our house many years ago it was a big, draughty, solid walled, single-glazed Victorian house, and very difficult to keep warm. We insulated and drylined and all the walls, installed insulation in the loft and under the suspended floors, double glazed the windows and draft proofed all the chimneys around the doors and under the skirtings.

We were delighted recently when our house achieved an EPC rating of “C”, equivalent to the new build houses in our area. This has helped us keep the house and Bed and Breakfast warm using a fraction of the energy we used to and has enabled us to install more energy efficient heating. It also helped making us a more sustainable Bed and Breakfast.

Air Source Heat Pump and Solar Panels

sustainable Bed and Breakfast

In 2022, with the help of local company Rural and Country, we exchanged our gas boiler for an air source heat pumps which now provide all our hot water and central heating, far more efficiently. We have also installed solar panels which will generate most of the electricity used around the B&B and will power the heat pumps. We don’t expect to be completely off grid electricity wise but will be a long way there, and a step further in become a sustainable Bed and Breakfast.

Breakfast room on ground floor

Designed for Minimum Impact

When we first established the B&B, we spent a lot of time figuring out how to provide a great service to our guests while making the minimum change to our existing house. Though the soft furnishings were newly bought, almost all the other furniture in the B&B has been passed down through our families or repurposed from second hand finds.

Invest in Energy Efficient Equipment

We carefully research all our white goods appliances to ensure they provide great energy efficiency, and tailor our working practices to ensure we use them in the most efficient way, particularly important to us as we do all our laundry in-house.

Use Environmentally Friendly Products

Our guest shower gel and shampoo, provided in refillable bottles, are from the BeeKind® collection by Gilchrist and Soames which contain no parabens or phthalates. We clean using white vinegar and eco-friendly cleaning products, usually Ecover and have recently started washing our laundry using homemade laundry powder made from natural ingredients.

Buy Local and Waste Little

All our meat comes from our local Weaverham butcher, George, and our eggs are free range local farm eggs. Our honey is locally sourced, not yet from our own hives, but sometimes from the hives of our lovely neighbours. We’d like to get better at growing our own produce but from time to time can offer you apple juice made from our own apples, and sometimes even tomatoes fresh from the garden. We cook to order so there isn’t much wastage, but any excess we can usually make use of cooking for our family.

Reduce and Recycle

We are trying to reduce our use of single use plastic and have refillable containers for our soap and shampoo, and fresh coffee and milk in the rooms which avoids the use of plastic sachets. We have recently stopped using plastic bin liners, using biodegradable bin liners in the bathrooms instead. We will recycle items that you place in the recycling section of your waste bin.

Let the Garden be Scruffy

We love our garden; it’s one of the reasons we moved here. Over the years we’ve done quite a bit of planting and have tried to choose species that will encourage wildlife, especially bees of course, and have discovered that the wildlife is happiest when we let the garden get a bit scruffy. There are a fair few log piles, and prunings left to compost on the flower beds. Our neighbours’ beautiful beech trees drop a lot of leaves in autumn which the bees love to nest in. We leave flowers to run to seed and don’t tidy them up until spring. Over the past few years we have tried to establish wildflowers and let the grass grow long: we won’t win any best kept lawn competitions but the bees are very happy among the clovers. We give all our guests a little gift of wildflower seeds to help spread the joy.

Planning for a more sustainable Bed and Breakfast

Once we have a good idea how our solar panels perform, we are planning to install an electric vehicle charging point. In the meantime, guests with electric cars are using our outdoor socket to trickle charge their car overnight. Our towels take a lot of energy to launder as they need to be tumble dried to stay fluffy, so we are researching options to help reduce this impact.
We are learning new things and getting new ideas every day and would love you to share your ideas and insights with us. All of your hints and tips will help us become a more sustainable Bed and Breakfast.

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