Our activity centre on the Lake District family activity holiday is located at the head of the stunningly beautiful Borrowdale Valley in the Lake District National Park. The centre offers a large range of outdoor activities and is operated in an environmentally responsible and community friendly manner. The Centre’s management prides itself on employing local people on long-term contracts, allowing staff to stay resident in this beautiful area. All of the centre’s instructors and staff are briefed on responsible travel and use of the environment, in turn passing on this message to the many customers.
The centre uses only produce provided by local suppliers, thus providing only the freshest produce for its customers whilst supporting the local economy. The centre has an active recycling programme, which all staff and customers are briefed in and encouraged to use. Each year the staff monitor the centre’s energy consumption and investments are made in new energy saving appliances and procedures. The ideal location in the heart of Borrowdale means that use of transport for activities can be kept to a minimum. If transport is needed local companies are used to help boost the local economy.
The centre on our Lake District family activity holiday works closely with the National Trust, the National Park Authority, the local community and other nearby outdoor centres to ensure that the local area and activity sites are managed thoughtfully, with any environmental impact kept to a minimum. The centre is also a key member of the Borrowdale User Group (BUG), through which they assist in reporting and informing other users about any areas of concern and implement plans to deal with any current or potential problems.
Our accommodation is situated just 5 minutes walk from the centre of Keswick. Despite being owned by a small chain the hotel adopts a sound environmental policy. In this respect recent changes have been made in the housekeeping department. In order to cut down on plastic containers being used and liquids, the hotel now use concentrated chemicals and have re-usable containers for these.
The amount of full linen changes on stayovers has been reduced to cut down on laundry and kitchen aprons, clothes and restaurant serving clothes are washed in-house. Guests are asked to place towels in the bath if they require them to be changed otherwise they would be placed back on the towel rail to be re-used. If a bedroom is for single occupancy we always use a twin room (2 single beds so only 1 bed will be used instead of a double bed) and make sure only one set of towels are in the room.
The hotel has invested in a compressor for cardboard boxes which are then sent away to the council for re-cycling and all paper is put into a recycle bin in reception which is then transferred to the outside large recycling bin. There are 3 bottle bins which all bottles from the bar and restaurant are put into each day. All printer cartridges are kept and sent back to the supplier to be re-cycled. When ordering copier paper we always use re-cycled. The night porter turns all lights and lamps off I public areas once the guests have gone bed and then turns them back on at 7am. Housekeeping turn lights and TV`s off in rooms once they are serviced. Radiators are checked in warmer months to ensure they are turned off. The heating times are reduced in warmer months.
The hotel endeavours to employ local people wherever possible but admits that it is difficult to attract residents into the lower paid jobs such as waiting and kitchen portering. Nevertheless, job vacancies are always advertised in local papers and the local job centre first, if no suitable employee is found then the hotel broadens the advertising.
The hotel strives to support local businesses by using only local tradesmen for any building and maintenance issues. With being in a chain of hotels, most of the contractors are signed to the company for the Lake District and the Blackpool hotels and are all local.
All the food is supplied from the North West ranging between Keswick and Blackpool (Head Office suppliers) and the head chef endeavours to use local ingredients where possible. As a chain, the hotel raises thousands of pounds every year through events for many different charities and have provided many vouchers for various fund raising events.
The founder of this company gave up his job as a stockbroker who made rich people richer, put a tent and sleeping bag on the back of his bicycle and went travelling. When he returned home he decided to do what he loved best and retrain so that he could set up an activity holiday company. He believes holidays spent lying on a beach gently grilling under a roasting sun are all very well but the memories from awesome experiences in stunning locations, such as white water rafting in the Pyrenees or dog sledding in Lapland, will last far longer than any sun tan.
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