In: Norfolk Country Venue
29th July 2014
It’s a real honour to be nominated for a Goldstar Award from Green Tourism but being Green is not an easy ride, especially for a small holiday cottage business. But there’s little point in doing the work unless you take it seriously and can back it up with actual results.
Since 2008 we have reduced our carbon emissions by 70% per bed night based on current occupancy levels. Annual emissions from onsite energy used by the business and customers were 115.5 tonnes per year in 2008 before we joined GTBS (Green Tourism Business Scheme), developed our barns and introduced an innovative mix of green technologies. As a result, (as of April 2014) this has been reduced to 27.4 tonnes of CO2 per year.
Over 80% of the energy we consume here at Cranmer is supplied by renewable sources; wind, GSHP, solar thermal & solar PV, Ecotricity for our electrical needs and a biomass boiler for heat. It’s been a massive undertaking and a large financial investment which we understand is a stumbling block for many small businesses. It hasn’t exactly been pain free but if we can do it, so can others. And we are always happy to share our experiences.
And we’re working with local suppliers to develop their businesses as well. Under the recent regulatory changes/updates to the RHI guidance woodfuel supplies must conform to 2013 standards. We suggested to our boiler supplier and our local recycled woodchip supplier Drurys Recycling Services that they obtain authorisation under the DECC RHI Biomass suppliers’ list. Drurys have been accepted onto the scheme as a producer/trader for chip-waste. Double whammy for us and for the environment by keeping wood waste out of landfill and securing a local supply for our boiler.
Holidays don’t sit comfortably in the ‘go green’ model. Transport is a major stumbling block if, like us you are offering beautiful rural isolation as part of your appeal. Incentives to travel ‘green’ are never taken up (back to the drawing board there). Holidaymakers who regularly recycle at home are less likely to want to bother on their holiday. We work hard to enable our guests to ‘Go Green at Cranmer’ and have comprehensive recycling facilities but if they want to dump all their rubbish in one bag, there is little we can do about it. It’s OK to do a Rotweiller impression in the office but prowling around the cottages checking into bins is an absolute no-no. However, we can pat ourselves on the back as our supplier recycles over 90% of waste collected. So ‘A-’with some way still to go.
Another stumbling block for rural sustainability has been a reliance on oil for heating and hot water. Oh, and we also have a stunning, heated indoor swimming pool. Over the years we have installed a 20kw wind turbine, 2 ground source heat pumps and 50kw of solar thermal.
Why is it such a responsibility? Whether you believe in the problems of climate change or not the undisputed fact is that we are running out of fossil fuels (the clue is in the word – fossil). We have heard many arguments over why renewables are not efficient, cost too much and are a blot on the landscape but the stark fact is that we have no choice. We have to find different sources of energy otherwise we will run out. Power cuts may be just a threat at the moment (price rises are currently a very hot potato) but they are inevitable if we concentrate purely on the now and fail to invest in sustainable energy sources. Yes, they are expensive to install and run but we have to start somewhere and as the technology improves, it will get cheaper. Electricity was so expensive to install originally that only the very rich were able to benefit. And building electricity systems from scratch was hardly economic. And electricity pylons are not beautiful. And which would you rather have? Wind farms or Chinese-funded nuclear power stations.
9th April 2013
Now that the venue has been open for 6 months, we’d like to celebrate by offering our readers a discount on all half day bookings, now £60 + VAT, plus we will also throw in a FREE serving of fair trade tea, coffee and biscuits with every booking*
Our intimate venue is the perfect place to hold off-site meetings, training days or corporate events and can accommodate up to 20 people. Situated just outside of Fakenham, The Green Room is wheelchair accessible and is equipped with state of the art technology including a large flat screen TV, AV equipment and wireless broadband. We have ample free parking on site and can help you organise catering and team building activities from a range of local providers.
If you are interested in booking the Green Room for your next meeting and would like further details email us or call us on 01328 823 135.
*Discounted offer applies on all half day bookings made in April and May 2013. Free tea, coffee and biscuits offer is limited to one serving per booking.
7th February 2013
Whilst we look forward to the coming months, we can also look back and say that we’ve had a rather busy winter. November saw us launch The Green Room, which is our purpose build events and meetings room. It’s been designed to cater for business hire during the week as is also available for cottage residents to hire to hold family celebrations or use as a private dining room when the cottage space just isn’t enough.
We’ve also had an influx of visitors to the cottages over the winter period. Christmas is always a busy period for us because North Norfolk comes alive over this festive period, but it’s also been a very busy January too.
To make the New Year rather eventful, the inclement weather hit us in January covering Norfolk with a good covering of snow. It certainly made the North Norfolk countryside look picture perfect.
In addition to all of this activity, we’ve also been busy refurbishing some of our cottages. Swallow’s kitchen and Woodpecker’s bathroom and former bunk room are currently undergoing new transformations and we’ll be unveiling the new look very soon.
Looking ahead into February, half term is looming along with Pancake Day and Valentine’s Day too! There are lots of half term activities taking place throughout North Norfolk and it’s not too late to book a break with us.
Don’t also forget that Mother’s Day is on Sunday 10th March. Why not treat your mum to a well-deserved break away. We’re currently offering a free bottle of champagne OR a box of locally made handmade chocolates from The Chocolate Deli Company in Walsingham with any short breaks booked over the Mothering Sunday weekend* Simply use voucher code 4FF61 if you’d like the bottle of champagne, or 1KE5C for the chocolates when you booking your break.
The Hoste Arms are also offering a fantastic mothering Sunday package. Champagne afternoon tea followed by mini facial and back massage £70.00 per person – contact Hoste Beauty Spa to book. Tel: 01328 737022. It’s the perfect gift for the perfect mother!
To keep up with what’s happening locally to us, make sure you keep checking our Facebook page as we regularly post up local events, activities news and information.
Don’t also forget sign up to our newsletter to receive our exclusive offers and latest updates.
*Offer is available from 7th February until 8th March for all short breaks that fall over 10th March 2013.
19th December 2012
15th November 2012
The venue was officially opened by David Cobham (pictured), a UK wildlife film maker and vice president of the Hawk and Old Trust, who cut the ribbon in front of over 30 local businesses.
Walsingham Farm Shops provided an array of a range of local produce supplied for guests to sample and also kindly donated a Christmas hamper which was raffled off in a prize draw.
During the opening, guests also had the opportunity to test their archery skills courtesy of the Fakenham Bowman, learn the art of clay pigeon shooting from Claybusters and also take a tour of Cranmer’s holiday cottages and surrounding grounds.
The Green Room has been created to offer state of the art meeting facilities within a quiet rural setting. It is ideal for small group meetings, training events and team building days. This purpose build venue accommodates up to 25 people, offers delegates ground floor access, galley kitchen and toilets. Audio-visual presentation equipment includes a 60”TV screen with cinema sound, LAN and Wi-Fi internet access and themed lighting.
The venue is also available to hire for cottage residents to hold social gatherings and is also an ideal setting to for local artists and photographers to display their work. We are currently exhibiting a range of local wildlife and landscape photography taken by Stephen Mole, Bill Pound, Martin Hayward-Smith & Roger Savell.
We have already received a lot of interest and enquiries to hire The Green Room and are pleased to have bookings in place already.
Thanks to everyone who has been involved with the development and launch of The Green Room, your input and support has helped us create and launch a new project which is already proving to be a success.
View The Green Room website for further details.