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Inside the Battlesteads greenhouses

Battlesteads Hotel and Restaurant in Wark, Northumberland, has cemented its status as one of the most sustainable hotels in the country by massively reducing its carbon footprint.

Well-known for its ‘green’ credentials, Battlesteads’ carbon footprint report reveals the hotel and restaurant’s emissions have decreased by 77.5% since 2012 to just 5.23kg CO2 per room per night in 2015. Despite the hotel’s increased occupancy following the addition of five new eco-lodges in 2015, Battlesteads is continuing to set the standard for sustainable hotels across the country.

Whilst the hotel’s carbon footprint is already considerably lower than the industry average of 31.1kg CO2 per room per night, Battlesteads isn’t stopping there and owners Richard and Dee Slade’s key objective for this year is to reduce their carbon footprint even further, with the aim to achieve less than 4.5kg CO2 per room per night by the end of the year.
One of the biggest influencing factors in the reduction of Battlesteads’ carbon footprint has been the switch to green energy provider ‘Ecotricity’ in January 2014. In addition to producing green energy, Battlesteads generate solar energy on site, 50% of which is used by Battlesteads and 50% which is sold to Ecotricity.

Battlesteads has been recognised for its commitment to environmental practices with multiple awards and has recently been shortlisted for Eco Hotel of the Year at the AA Hospitality Awards.

The shortlist recognises Battlesteads’ clear commitment to sustainability, demonstrated through good practice and policy to make a positive contribution to reducing its impact on the environment.

Richard Slade, owner of Battlesteads said: “We are delighted to have been shortlisted for Eco Hotel of the Year. Sustainability is something we pride ourselves on and the award really reflects our commitment to environmental practices. Since extending the hotel to offer more accommodation it was always going to be tough to keep up with our commitments to the environment so it’s great to see we’ve been able to sustain our eco principles and reduce our carbon footprint so greatly”.

Other awards given to Battlesteads for its sustainability include the Considerate Hoteliers Special Commendation Award 2015, a Platinum level rating in TripAdvisor’s GreenLeaders Programme in 2014, Hotel Cateys Green Hotel of the Year 2011 and a Gold Star Award at the 2011 Green Tourism Awards. The hotel and restaurant also has Three Star Sustainability Champion status, awarded by the Sustainable Restaurant Association (SRA).

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Battlesteads in the Sun

Battlesteads Hotel and Restaurant in Wark, near Hexham, has been named the Best Pub in the North East at the National Pub & Bar Awards.

The accolade was presented to Battlesteads at an awards ceremony on Tuesday 24 May, held at London’s BAFTA theatre. The sustainable hotel and restaurant was previously chosen as the county winner for Northumberland by a judging panel from leading industry magazine Pub & Bar, before being voted as the best in the region.

Entrants to the awards were judged on all aspects of pub hospitality, from perfect service and product range to aesthetic design and entertainment. Battlesteads was chosen for its friendly, welcoming and knowledgeable staff, wide range of local and national cask ales, well-travelled list of sustainable and biodynamic wines and fantastic food featuring home-grown ingredients and locally sourced produce.

Battlesteads beat tough competition from across Northumberland, Durham and Tyne and Wear to walk away with the title of Best Pub in the North East. The award was presented by one of the UK’s leading food and restaurant critics and journalist for The Observer, Jay Rayner.

Speaking after the awards ceremony, owner of Battlesteads Richard Slade said: “When we found out we had been chosen as the county winner for Northumberland, we were absolutely delighted. To then go on to be named the best pub in whole of the North East is a great honour and the whole team is celebrating this fantastic achievement. We are proud to be flying the flag for all of the other brilliant pubs in the North East and we’d like to thank the judges for choosing us as the winner.”

Tristan O’Hana, editor of Pub & Bar magazine said: “This is a brilliant achievement for Battlesteads, and for all our county and regional winner – they can now celebrate the fact that they are the best in their area. It was an absolute pleasure to reward and acknowledge these incredible businesses at what was none other than a celebration of standout hospitality and business practice. This selection of pubs and bars shows just what a fantastic industry the UK on-trade is.”

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TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence

Battlesteads Hotel and Restaurant in Wark, near Hexham, has been awarded a 2015 TripAdvisor Service Excellence Award for consistently high visitor reviews.

The award, announced on Friday 14 August, puts the Northumberland hotel among the top 10 per cent of businesses listed on TripAdvisor.

Only outstanding hospitality businesses which maintain an overall rating of four or higher, from a high volume of traveller reviews, are eligible for the Service Excellence Award.

This award follows Battlesteads achieving a Platinum level rating in TripAdvisor’s GreenLeaders Programme in 2014, for reaching the highest standard of environmental friendliness and sustainability.

Recent reviews of Battlesteads on TripAdvisor have included comments such as “I am so pleased we chose Battlesteads Hotel, it was lovely. I wish we could have stayed longer, and definitely would return when we get the chance”; “Battlesteads Hotel and Restaurant was an absolute delight” and “I thoroughly recommend a stay at Battlesteads. Excellent value, great food, comfortable rooms, lovely welcoming staff and in a pretty village surrounded by stunning countryside.”

High praise has also been given for Battlesteads Restaurant, with one reviewer saying “the standard of food is excellent, and portrays the professionalism of the chef in the kitchen” and another adding that “dinner in the restaurant was delicious, and good value for money, the choice at breakfast was also very good and the full Northumbrian breakfast was very tasty indeed”.

Richard Slade, owner of Battlesteads said: “We are absolutely thrilled to receive the TripAdvisor Service Excellence Award and to be rated one of the top hotels in the area. We strive to provide a fantastic experience for everyone who stays in our hotel and eco lodges or eats in our restaurant, and we love receiving such positive feedback through TripAdvisor reviews. TripAdvisor is incredibly influential among travellers and receiving this award will help assure guests booking a stay here that they are making the right choice.”



Trip Advisor Greenleaders

Adding another green feather to its bow Battlesteads Hotel and Restaurant in Wark, near Hexham is delighted to have achieved a Platinum level rating in Tripadvisors new GreenLeader programme.

Developed in partnership with the Carbon Trust, the UK Green Building Council, the United Nations Environment Programme, and the International Tourism Partnership, GreenLeader was launched in the UK and European markets at the beginning of March 2014. The programme helps travellers make greener choices by promoting hotels that have adopted environmentally sustainable practices via their Bronze, Silver, Gold or Platinum accreditation.

The green practices assessed include:

  • Having linen and towel re-use plans
  • Tracking energy usage on a regular basis
  • Recycling
  • Using energy efficient light-bulbs
  • Educating staff and guests on green practices

Battlesteads achieved the maximum accreditation from the scheme, with the Platinum award adding to their established green and sustainable hall of fame.

Previous green merits include; Three Star Sustainability Champion status from the Sustainable Restaurant Association (SRA), Considerate Hotel of the Year 2011 from the Considerate Hoteliers and Green Hotel of the Year in the 2011 Hotel Cateys.

Commenting on the new programme and Battlesteads Platinum status, owner Richard Slade says:

"At Battlesteads we constantly look at ways we can extend our environmentally friendly code of ethics and be at the forefront of sustainable tourism. We see more and more visitors looking for hotels with strong environmental credentials, and initiatives such as this help the masses make informed decisions when it comes to choosing where to stay. Over the past years we have introduced a number of energy saving and environmental initiatives to the running of the hotel and pub, and continue to view ourselves as pioneers in sustainable tourism."

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Richard and Dee Slade outside Battlsteads
As winner of the Your Northumberland Guide Best Sunday Lunch award in April 2012, it seems fitting that Battlesteads pub, hotel and restaurant in Wark, near Hexham, should be among the first establishments to get behind the inaugural Northumberland Restaurant Week, taking place 18th to 24th March 2013.

Battlesteads has created a special menu for the occasion, which will be available every evening during the week and must be pre-booked. Diners can select from two and three course options and the menu contains lots of seasonal Northumbrian produce, plus interesting and unusual ingredients grown in the Battlesteads polytunnels and gardens to complement the dishes.

Battlesteads owner Richard Slade commented: “We’ve compiled a delicious and varied menu which combines the very best that Northumberland has to offer – locally sourced wild rabbit, lamb, sustainable fish and artisan cheeses, and not forgetting our very own home grown vegetables, herbs and salads.”

The special menu includes a welcome cocktail based on Fentiman’s Victorian Lemonade and wine lovers can enjoy a special wine matching package with their meal for just £15 per person. The wines will be from Battlesteads’ award-winning list of over 25 biodynamic, Fairtrade and eco varieties.

Customers wishing to ‘dine and recline’ during restaurant week can book a room at Battlesteads for the discounted price of £125 per room per night to include the three course menu and breakfast the following morning. This is based on two people sharing and is reduced from £160 per room per night. Subject to availability.

Breakfast is a traditional Northumbrian platter with homemade black pudding and sausages from Wark Village Butchers.

Richard continued: “We’re delighted that Your Northumberland Guide has taken the initiative to create what is going to be a brilliant showcase for the region; an opportunity to promote local suppliers and highlight the talented chefs we have right here on our doorstep.

“Of course, it’s also great for customers! They’ll be spoilt for choice as they’re faced with a wealth of fabulous food offerings at discounted prices in some of the county’s top establishments. What’s not to love?!”

Further information and bookings can be made by contacting Battlesteads on 01434 230 209 or info@battlesteads.com

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Considerate Hoteliers Award
Battlesteads pub, hotel and restaurant in Wark, near Hexham in Northumberland, has been declared the UK’s Considerate Hotel of the Year 2010/11 by the Considerate Hoteliers Association (CHA).

The coveted national awards celebrate the best in environmental, sustainable and socially responsible performance and are open to all UK hotels and small accommodation providers.

Beating off competition from nine other UK hotels, including some of the largest and most high end operators and groups, Battlesteads received the CHA’s highest accolade, sponsored by Gilchrist & Soames, for being the best ‘all-rounder’ establishment considered to have succeeded in a wide range of environmental and social initiatives.

The judges commented: “Battlesteads provided an outstanding entry and is a very worthy winner. They have tackled difficult issues such as waste and energy use, and addressed many areas of their business in their mission to improve their sustainability. Their entry described some really innovative approaches – such as channelling waste heat into a polytunnel used to grow crops for the restaurant.
 
“Richard and Dee Slade investigate the sustainability of their suppliers and really promote to their guests what they’re doing by, for example, giving tours of the biomass boiler! They also spread the word to the wider community by, for instance, assisting the local primary school children with their allotment.”
 
Renowned hospitality industry environmental and food safety consultant, CHA Ambassador and leading member of the 2010/11 CHA awards panel of judges, Professor John Forte OBE added: “Of the many worthy contenders for this title, we chose a business that has demonstrated over the past three years a steady progress on sustainable environmental improvements across the board.

“Richard and Dee Slade have recognised that there are many sustainable improvements that still need to be made and have a positive, realistic and achievable programme to work towards achieving their end goals. Personally, I was particularly taken with the element of fun that they have injected into their endeavours and their obvious enthusiasm for what they do and have achieved.”

To mark the achievement, Battlesteads owners Richard and Dee Slade attended a ceremony at The Savoy in London where they received an inscribed Dartington Crystal decanter to add to their impressive collection of prestigious trophies.

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Showing Stories 1 to 6 (of 6) <1>


Reviews from Trip Advisor

"Very, very impressed with the hotel and staff"

"Quality hotel, quality service, quality food, quality ethics"

"This is a place where the guests still matter"

"Fabulous service and food in this wonderful family hotel"

Some of our Awards

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