Protecting the environment is about understanding how our actions today will impact on the future. What we plant today will mature in years to come. This is why careful planning and a long-term biodiversity enhancement strategy are so important, and why our own growth as a business has been slow and measured, with only 10 locations in 45 years. We occupy just 0.02% of the Public Forest Estate, and, with the help of Forestry England, Forestry and Land Scotland and Natural Resources Wales, we help manage the forest in and around those 10 locations to ensure long-term sustainability and contribute towards further conservation projects outside of our immediate locations.
Our cabin locations are unique and a pioneering design which works in harmony with the forest around them. In the 45 years since our first cabins were created we have constantly sought innovative ways to further improve their features and the way they are integrated to work with the natural environment. Our most recent location in Beddgelert has been built to BREEAM standards, the worldâ€™s leading sustainability assessment method.
We use PEFC (Program for the Endorsement of Forest Certification, PEFC/16-37-2187) sustainable wood for our cabins, promote recycling and low energy usage, and avoid light pollution. All elements of our lighting design meet the Institute of Lighting Professionals (ILP) Guidance Notes for the Reduction of Obtrusive Light. This means that we minimise our effects on nocturnal wildlife and preserve dark skies.
We have a light touch approach to building our cabins. our expertly engineered modular timber units are carefully assembled between the trees and raised on steel piles which are placed vertically into the ground. This protects the forest floor, ensures that nearby trees are unaffected and minimised soil movement. It also means that rainwater drains into the forest floor naturally.
Our locations hold Green Leader and Green Tourism awards, which are assessed annually against strict criteria. This ongoing assessment ensures that those who are given the awards have a genuine and practical commitment to operating in an eco-friendly way. Find out more about the awards we have won.
As a business, we need our woodlands to thrive so that our guests and visitors can enjoy the freedom to connect with nature. It makes sense, therefore for us to look after the forests. We also have a responsibility to manage the forests for the future, so that generations to come can enjoy them. We support the commitment outlined in the Governmentâ€™s 25 Year Environment Plan, for us all to be:
"...the first generation to leave the natural environment in a better state than we found it and pass on to the next generation a natural environment protected and enhanced for the future."
Our work in and around our locations enhances and enriches the natural environment, while our financial investment supports Forestry England, Forestry and Land Scotland and Natural Resources Wales to maintain the wider public forest estate.
Our purpose is to create authentic experiences in Britainâ€™s amazing forests; connecting people, nature and local communities. We believe that those amazing experiences and connections are the starting point for inspiring and educating people about the importance of caring for our natural world. Our Forest Rangers are central to our education programme, along with our work with partners and our Forestipedia blog. These all help us to engage, not only with our guests and local visitors, but also with the wider public. Our aim is to join a conversation, especially with young people â€“ the future custodians of our natural world.