Could a green venue expect better recognition? We have become a Green Tourism Gold (external link) accredited venue. We were judged on the areas listed in the table at the bottom of this page.
We achieved an overall score of 87%. This is a great accomplishment for our team. Our score puts us as one of the leading green venues in the UK.
We have implemented a series of sustainability and corporate social responsibility (CSR) policies. Recently, we integrated the UN sustainable development goals (external link) to our strategy. We also launched Bake The Difference, a programme to help ex-offenders integrate into society through practical and theoretical cooking and baking skills. Examples of our eco-friendly initiatives are listed in the table.
We intend to carry on working with Green Tourism in the future. We will build on their recommendations to be a beacon of sustainability for the events industry.
We had already received two Bronze awards in the past:
We highlighted our commitments to sustainability and disenfranchised groups in our entry.
|Areas of assessment||Sustainable or CSR actions|
|Management||We created the Sustainability Strategy Plan 2030
We will consider the three P’s – People, Planet, Profit – equally in our decision-making process
|Marketing and communication||We held a presentation at Confex 2019 on the keynote stage discussing ‘Are we green enough? How to make a difference in the events industry’
We share tips and advice on our blog to event organisers and delegates, such as ‘Top 10 tips to run a sustainable event’
|Social responsibility and equality||We launched the Bake The Difference programme to help ex-offenders integrate into society through practical and theoretical cooking and baking skills
Friends House customers can buy a hot meal for someone in need through our Suspended Soup Scheme. When someone buys a Suspended Soup, the Company matches it like for like
|Energy saving||We use 100% renewable electricity provided by Good Energy
We use biogas from Ørsted to heat the building and have reduced our heating emissions by 91% since 2017
We have reduced our carbon footprint by 29% since 2009
The carbon footprint per delegate per day has been reduced by 30% since 2017
|Water issues||In 2016, we installed a rainwater harvesting system in our garden
Our toilets and wash basins are equipped with short flush and tap control systems
|Purchasing||Our catering is organic, Fairtrade and locally produced where possible
Our purchase of good and services are delivered under conditions that should not involve the abuse or exploitation of any persons and have the least negative impact on the environment
|Waste minimization||We have a zero waste to landfill policy
Our staff are encouraged to recycle in the building. There are recycling points on every floor and in every office space
We signed the MIA 20% less pledge – committing to reduce our use of single-use plastics by a further 20% by 2025
|Travel and transport||There is a cycle to work scheme available for all our staff|
|Nature and culture||We have installed three beehives on our roof
Our staff volunteer at Organic Lea during the year
|Innovation||We launched Seed Kitchen, a meat-free, vegetarian and vegan restaurant|