Green Cottages Environmental PolicyWe have lived in the village for many years and care about the local environment in this part of Kent. Monique stood as a local councillor to ensure our lovely environment was defended and the long term viability of the countryside is maintained for generations to come. We hope our visitors appreciate it without leaving too much of an impact!
Land managementWe seek to create a balance between encouraging tourism and caring for nature. We encourage guests to walk and cycle around the local area and support local businesses. There are some great local routes (by foot or by bike) to access.
We converted the cottages in 2007 and maintained the large hedges and bushes in the front gardens and the ancient yew in the back garden of Candy Cottage. The large wooden sheds and concrete patio in the rear garden were removed and gardens relaid and the yew tree tamed. We have started to introduce some planting into the back garden and encourage the wildlife with our bird feeders. The birds and butterflies love the front hedges! We trim them back when the birds have stopped nesting. We have a very friendly Robin! From the front room/lounge you can look out onto the village green for the ducks, the odd heron, rabbits, Mr Fox, the house martins, the occasional hedgehog and badger.
Recycling and purchasingWe recycle paper, cardboard, tins, plastic and glass bottles, plastic packaging, foil and batteries. The kitchen has bins to separate waste. Soon we will be able to recycle food waste.
We re-use office paper, plastic bags and try to keep refuse to a minimum. Where ever possible we use biodegradable products; stationery, toilet paper, kitchen roll etc is made from recycled paper (100% or as near as we can get to it) made without the nasty chemicals, and we do most bookings and orders by email and telephone, to save paper. We make to the most of technology we have a website, and Twitter and Facebook pages.
The flowers in vases come from our back garden. We don’t use nasty chemicals in the garden and we compost garden waste where possible in our own back garden.
Use of EnergyOur electricity supplier is Good Energy, which supplies 100% renewable electricity, rather than fossil fuels. It is the “greenest” energy supplier in the market. We have installed a combi boiler and the heating system with a fully controllable timer and thermostatic controls on each radiator. All our white appliances are "A" rated for energy efficiency.
All our lighting is low-energy including CFL’s and LED light bulbs. We have a motion sensor timer light used at the front of the cottage to reduce our energy use.
During the refurbishment all floors, roof space and walls were insulated and then dry lined for both heat and sound proofing, making it really toasty in winter. All the windows are low E conservation standard double glazed sash windows to keep the draughts out.
The toilet is dual flush and taps are the mixer variety. We have also installed a water saving shower head.
The cottages do not have oil or gas (no mains gas in the village) - both are impractical given the space restrictions. Going forward we will be looking into the possibilities for other green technologies.
CleaningEnvironmental cleaning products are used wherever possible but not forgetting the fantastic steam cleaner (which sterilises everything in its path). We use where possible vinegar, washing soda etc, and microfibre cloths reducing the need for nasty chemical cleaning fluids.
Enjoying natureBooks, maps and guides are provided for bird-watchers, walkers, nature-lovers etc. Birds are encouraged with feeders and nest-boxes.
Guests can join in the nature watching events held in Elmley Marshes and other reserves, as well as the Kent Wildlife Trust’s Cromers Woods and the AONB. We particularly encourage visitors to walk and cycle to these areas (we hire out 2 bikes). Remember to take your binoculars. Visitors may also like to go out on one of the Thames sailing barges that take visitors along the Swale.
Local food and local transportOur website pages and the information folder in the cottage details local restaurants, pubs, shops, butchers and farmers markets. There are a series of fantastic local food trails, copies of these are available in the cottage and on the website. Award winning SW Doughty’s the local butcher in Doddington, one of only four in Kent with their own private abattoir and delivers to Rodmersham twice a week. They stock locally produced meat, vegetables and dairy. Their meat is very good and they are the only butchers in Kent to have their own abattoir.
Delivery of milk and groceries from local village store is encouraged. In fact we a struck a deal that they provide a grocery ordering service for guests. We also have a number of local companies that can deliver Kentish produce (order online and deliver to the cottage door).
Maps are available with footpaths and cycle paths marked, plus guide books and we can hire out 2 bikes for guests. We provide a whole host of information; timetables for the buses and trains, leaflets on the joys of the immediate villages, Faversham and further a field including Canterbury and Whitstable. We provide information on a number of cycling and walking routes from the 20 minute walk to Cromers Woods to an all day cycling route along the Saxon shore way/No.1 cycling route.