Eco Friendly Hotel Initiatives at Down Hall Country House Hotel England

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Down Hall Country House is an established Country House Hotel in Essex, England that has been making dramatic changes to it's business to adopt environmentally friendly practices. Through ongoing investments in to green policies, Down Hall Hotel is fast becoming a leading model for all Hotels looking to get serious about their environment credentials.

Just asking guests to hang up their towels to help preserve the environment is no longer enough!

Down Hall Country House is an established Country House Hotel in Essex, England that has been making dramatic changes to its business to adopt environmentally friendly practices. Through ongoing investments in to green policies, Down Hall Hotel is fast becoming a leading model for all Hotels looking to get serious about their environment credentials.

"Just asking guests to hang up their towels to help preserve the environment is no longer enough!" Down Hall Country House Hotel located on the Essex / Hertfordshire border, near London England, is an oasis of tranquillity, tradition and elegance. And it is this very ambience that the hotel is determined to safeguard; both today, and in the future.

The hotel's owners, The Veladail Collection, are passionate about doing more to protect our natural environment, so Down Hall Hotel has been used to spearhead their 'Going Green' project!

Down Hall Country House undertook an eco friendly audit in January 2008, carried out by top environmentalist Donnachadh McCarthy and is committed to becoming a more eco friendly hotel and carbon neutral within the next 12 months. They calculated that Down Hall alone produces around 1100 tonnes of carbon a year, sends 80 tonnes of waste to landfill, and spends £130K on electricity. Therefore the Veladail Collection as a whole will have a carbon footprint of approximately 2500 tonnes per annum.

Something had to be done and Down Hall didn't hang around! An eco friendly policy for the hotel was drawn up and staff and suppliers appraised of the company's environmental objectives, the key elements of which include:

  •     Reducing electricity usage by over 10%
  •     Reducing landfill waste by over 50%
  •     Producing over 25% of their own fruit and vegetables
  •     Reducing paper usage by 25%

Although only in the initial stages, Down Hall Hotel has already undertaken a number of green initiatives including changing over 50% of light bulbs to CFL energy saving bulbs, printing all menus on recycled board or paper, using old newspaper and magazines to produce paper logs for the open fire and working with a new recycling company. The results have been immediate! Within the last 2 months they have reduced the amount of waste they send to landfill by 25% and electricity by almost 10%. Indeed so successful has the electricity saving scheme been, that they are increasing their target to a 20% reduction within the first year.

The company vehicle was changed to a Toyota Prius and a four-acre site cleared and prepared for a vegetable garden, allowing for organic home-produced produce.

Down Hall will also be switched to 100% renewable energy, thereby reducing their carbon output by approximately 70%. Water saving devices have also recently been fitted into toilet systems and non-chemical cleaning products will be introduced within the next few months. The company is also investigating options of harvesting rainwater to flush toilets, gradually switching to more locally produced products to reduce 'Food Miles' and working with the Essex Wildlife Trust to enhance and make better use of its 30 acres of protected woodland.

Guests will have the option to pay a 'carbon off-setting' charge as the hotel has calculated the direct carbon output for each type of guest stay ranging from 50p for a one night stay to several hundred pounds to off set a major event, conference or seminar held at the hotel.

Down Hall Country House is passionate about becoming 'green', reducing its carbon footprint to become an eco friendly hotel, protecting and preserving the environment in which we live.

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Sarah Tobler
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