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Our Green Story : The Sanctuary Cornwall
The Sanctuary Cornwall, is an offgrid eco lodge in Cornwall, set in 12 acres of steep hillside right above the River Fowey in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
The Sanctuary is the result of an idea of ours to provide accommodation for small groups and retreats, and also B&B guests, showing them that offgrid living is possible not just as a gimmick or a holiday idea, but a viable alternative to modern living. We are definitely not there yet, but many guests arrive unaware that we are offgrid until they start reading our room notes and talking to us! They often email us to say they have taken some of our ideas home with them - the most popular is our 3 minute egg timer to time your shower! It can often start competition between partners - you have been warned! It's also about researching low energy appliances when you need to replace - indeed - 'repair, reuse, then recycle' are the order we encourage guests to think about life. It's about gently encouraging by example, rather than preach - no one wants to come on holiday & be lectured!
Our 7 acres of woodland was planted in 2002, and we have added about 100 fruit trees, created a new orchard space and begun a Forest Garden. We are experimenting with Permaculture, and growing as much fruit and veg as we can, hoping to use it in our kitchen, and show others about the techniques. We also encourage guests to walk, cycle, kayak, paddleboard (there is a company in the village for both) and leave their cars behind as much as possible, and perhaps take the train to further afield destinations.
In Feb 2021 we were delighted to win Gold in the Cornwall Tourism Awards for 'Ethical, Responsible, Sustainable Tourism', and then to be put through to the South West finals - where we won Gold again! If that wasn't fantastic enough, we were also given a special award by South West Water for 'Water Conservation'. This is so wonderful for us as this whole subject forms the core of our business. This is not the pinnacle of the mountain by any means, but rather a signpost to show we are on the right path at the bottom of the slope. There is much more to do - and learn, and we are keen to interact with other businesses, industry bodies and of course our guests, to develop and improve how we live life and run a business more sustainably and ethically. We have to protect & sustain the fabulous landscape that attracts visitors to us in the first place...
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