Glenholm Centre and
Glenholm Wildlife Project
are set amid some of the most beautiful scenery in Southern Scotland. We would
like to keep it that way for future generations. It is our aim to make sure that
the activities at the Centre have minimal impact on our environment and that we
pass the Centre on to the next generation in the same or better condition than
we found it. To help us achieve this we are working on a number of projects and have a stated environment policy.
A sustainable environment is our goal but from a business
point of view so is keeping costs to a minimum and having a sustainable
business. So we believe that the example we try to set is achievable within a
Energy Conservation and Self Sufficiency
Our premises rely on oil for heating,
LPG gas for some of our cooking and inevitably electricity. Over the last five
years we have tried to reduce our dependency on oil and gas and to reduce our
consumption of electricity. In the medium to long term our aim is to be
self-sufficient in electricity, probably through the use of a wind turbine, or
failing that to access green tariff electricity. Here are some key points
regarding our achievements and plans:
the centre is dependent on
two oil-fired boilers to provide central heating and to heat water.
March 2008 - installed a Woodwarmer wood burning stove supplied by the
oil consumption has reduced from 16
litres per day in 2004 to 8 litres per day (since 2010).
all of the wood we use for the
wood-burning stove is sourced on the farm from dead, dangerous or fallen trees.
on the farm we have a program of tree
planting (see Tree Orphanage).
we have replaced all light bulbs with
low energy versions.
in the bedrooms we gently encourage our guests to
turn lights off when leaving rooms.
we always purchase 'A' rated 'white'
goods items, although we have never replaced a working item solely because of
its energy rating.
we have reduced our electricity
consumption from 41 units per day in 2003 to 27 units per day (since 2010).
our current supplier is Scottish Power
who sadly only obtain 6.9% of their energy from renewable sources.
we have a medium to long term goal of
producing our own energy probably using PV panels.
we are in the middle of a complete review of insulation
throughout the Centre with the aim to increase insulation to more than the
At the Glenholm Centre and within the
Glenholm Wildlife Project we aim to reduce the amount of unnecessary packaging of products bought for the
Centre and to recycle as much as we can of waste products.
Reusing and the Tree Orphanage
the local council
(Scottish Borders Council) promotes recycling and makes it easier to recycle
with collections of paper, card and most plastic items every other week.
Broughton has a bottle bank for glass items.
we provide separate bins in guest rooms for recyclable and
before sending for reprocessing however we look for ways of
re-using items in house.
the tree orphanage has a policy of never buying pots but
instead re-uses buckets and containers of various sizes left over by the farm.
all organic 'vegetable' kitchen waste is composted.
for soil the orphanage uses a mix of molehill earth and
compost produced from organic kitchen waste.
even the trees at the orphanage are recycled as they have all
been rescued from gardens and other locations where they're not wanted.
Where to buy inputs for the business and what to buy is
probably one of the biggest challenges for a small business that is both trying
to be green, but is also targeting an inclusive market and therefore is trying
to work to a budget.
for economic reasons we buy most of our inputs from
large supermarkets although the choice of which supermarket to use and its
location (the edge of Edinburgh 20 miles away or Galashiels about 30 miles) is
largely determined by where we are already having to travel for other services
or as part of our work.
when we need smaller numbers of items or when we run short of
items we use smaller supermarkets in Biggar (7 miles away) or Peebles (12
where there is a choice we always buy items produced in
Scotland (for example meat).
where there is a choice we always buy fair-trade items (for example coffee,
sugar, bananas etc...).
where there is a choice we always buy environmentally friendly detergents
(for example the Ecover range).
While accreditation schemes such as the Green Tourism
Business Scheme quite rightly emphasize the importance of water conservation as
one of the key environmental measures that they take into account, we are in a
fortunate position in that we have a private spring fed water supply. Any water
that we don't use returns to the stream. In addition we have a septic tank so
any waste from water that we do use goes to the tank and excess liquid from the
tank soaks away through the ground and again eventually back to the river
system. Nothing other than natural processes and energy (bacteria) are used to
process the septic tank waste.
Note that while education is very important and especially
education by example, in the area of water conservation we feel it unnecessary
to spend money on manufactured goods to reduce water consumption in toilets, or
to add to the number of printed notices reminding our paying guests of issues
which in our own situation are not relevant.
The Glenholm Centre suffers for being in a rural area which
is desperately poorly served by public transport. The nearest railway station is at Lanark, 25 miles away, and
is part of the SPT centred on Glasgow. Indeed there is no railway station
anywhere in the Scottish Borders administrative area. The nearest bus stop to
Glenholm is at the end of the glen road (Rachan), one mile away.
Rachan is served by the Biggar-Peebles service about six
times a day in each direction.
there are two services linking Broughton village (a further
two miles from Rachan) with Edinburgh, one in the morning and the other in the
evening in each direction.
there are more services linking both Biggar and Peebles to
a full list of services is available from the
Upper Tweed Community
With public transport so poor, local people all rely on their
cars far more than they ought to need to and visitors to Glenholm almost
exclusively come by car.
for our own use we have
a Skoda Fabia Greenline II Estate (to replace our previous seven year old Kangoo)
which according to
Which has a combined miles per gallon of
83.1, CO2 emissions of just 89g/km and is A rated for road tax.
once our guests have arrived we endeavour to provide all that
they need without the need for them to go out.
we include in a feedback form a box for guests to record the
mileage they have used to reach us and we then promise to plant enough trees
each year to balance this.
Environment Policy Statement
Within the Glenholm Centre and Glenholm Wildlife Project to achieve best
green practice we are
- Reducing the amount of unnecessary packaging of products bought for the
- Recycling as much as we can of waste products
- Increasing the efficiency of energy use throughout the Centre
- Increasing the biodiversity of the land around the centre
- Making it easier for visitors to view wildlife around the Centre without
impacting on the activities of the wildlife.
We ask our visitors to help us by
- Bedding and towels changed only at your request
- Turning off lights when leaving rooms
- Keeping external doors shut when heating is on
We value any comment and suggestions from our visitors in helping us to
achieve our aims. Please forgive us if you think we are not doing something
right but help us out by making suggestions.