Close House Estate covers 450 acres Northumberland countryside and recognise that we need to protect this as a business and for the local community. Close House enjoys a wonderful setting over-looking the valley near to Heddon-on-the-Wall, the heritage site, Hadrian’s Wall and the River Tyne, and it is our aim to operate the hotel in the most environmentally responsible manner possible.
Some of the green initiatives we have actioned or are developing:-
In 2012, the hotel installed a CHP system, that generates electricity from gas utilizing the heat by product for our heating and Hot water system. This reduces the amount of electricity that as a business we use and reduces are carbon footprint benefiting the environment.
Close House is presently working towards becoming a member of the Green Business in Tourism and the Sustainable Restaurant Association that will result in being graded for our green company objectives which as a business we aim to achieve. This will also link in the Corporate Social Responsibility Statement that will underline the different areas we need to focus on to make sure we are focused on taking responsibility for our actions and continue to find ergonomic solutions as a business.
On a community level in Spring 2013 we have become part of the ‘Chefs adopt a school’ which is a national charity which sends chefs into schools to deliver food education to children from where food comes from and how it is grown, through to how to cook it. Our school is St. Andrews in Heddon-on-the-Wall and the programme covers taste, healthy eating, nutrition and hygiene as well as the recently added Front of House session.
On our golf courses we drain all our gully pot drains and water ways into the reservoir on the ninth hole of the Championship Lee Westwood Colt course for irrigation purposes to save water abstraction. To encourage wildlife and wild flowers to grow we maintain rough heights around the Lee Westwood Colt and we also only spray chemicals for curative purposes and not for preventative reasons.
Working in partnership with our waste management company we presently recycle cardboard, glass, batteries, old tyres and oil and also our general waste is compacted to reduce the number of pick-ups that will reduce the carbon footprint of the vehicles. Other recycling lines will be happening soon.
We have also identified where LED and low energy lighting can be used effectively and have installed PIR detectors where possible along with training for day and night staff to turn lights off when there are no guests present.
When it comes to sourcing food, we focus heavily on looking for local suppliers with local produce that not only helps keep carbon footprint for food deliveries to a minimum, but also supports the small local businesses in the area and can sustain employment. This is a key ethos when designing our restaurant menus which results in our food being sourced from either the surrounding community or the North East as a region.
Guests are also encouraged to support our commitment to being a green business by assisting in reducing the number of towels changed daily to staying on the estate and enjoying the facilities without getting into the car when staying with us.
With almost 95% of the staff coming from the local region we understand the need to protect the environment around us and are in the process of developing the ‘Green Ways’ plan that will encourage all departments to make sure we are as green as possible within our operation.
It is our belief that everyone has a commitment to the environment and we seek ways in which we can conserve resources and seek to work with our suppliers to find innovative and ergonomic solutions to constantly improve the impact our business activities have on the environment.