Statement of Purpose and Values
The Orchard at Munsley’s mission is to run a sustainable wedding venue that champions greener choices, reduces waste and respects the environment. This is central to our ethos and at the core of how we work and how we drive the business forward, making an increased difference year-on-year.
This can only be fully achieved in collaboration with our couples and engaging with our suppliers to make small changes and informed choices, that are kinder to the planet without compromising the vision of their wedding day. We will listen to couples priorities while offering eco-friendly alternatives and solutions that will reduce the impact of their wedding on the environment.
Nature is at the heart of our business as we grew up in the countryside, on the family farm that has been in our family for generations. It is imperative to us that we protect and respect this beautiful part of Herefordshire that we are fortunate enough to be responsible for and able to diversify for our business. The Orchard at Munsley’s drive to a more sustainable way of working means the business aims to be carbon neutral by 2030. We want to plant more trees on the land surrounding the venue to offset our carbon emissions. We are also currently researching greener energies which will reduce our
In addition to this, we pay our team the National Living Wage, share the available working hours equally between the bar staff and provide relevant training, refreshments and breaks during their shift.
The venue is located on the family farm so we are also looking at the wider opportunities on the farm as a whole, such as looking into safer pesticides to use in the orchard and experimenting with the frequency of spraying to increase biodiversity. We are also looking into Countryside Stewardships and different crops to encourage wildlife and pollinators. Landfill waste reduction is important to us and we follow the waste hierarchy to minimise waste going to landfill. From 2024 onwards, we will be providing a more sustainable way of disposing of food waste. We will provide a food waste only bin which can be used by all caterers to collect food waste and taken to an anaerobic digester to produce renewable energy and avoid carbon emissions.
- We are a tipi wedding venue and run 15 weddings a year between May-September. We currently use a diesel generator to power each event but we are looking into greener options. We have completed an energy audit through Herefordshire Council and have been informed there are grants available to support our transition to a more eco power solution. In the meantime, we are committed to not using the generator overnight to power the toilets when the wedding party stay and camp. This would save 9 hours per event x15 which would be 135 hours of the generator being off and not producing CO2. By pledging to switch it off overnight, we are highlighting we are aware of its emissions and trying to reduce them where we can. This is the first step to move to a greener way of working.
- From 2024, we are committed to limit the distance suppliers travel to get to us for new bookings going forward. We are putting a 60 mile radius limit to reduce N20 emissions from vehicle exhausts. We want to champion local, sustainable suppliers so this is a positive way to reduce emissions and encourage our couples to hire local businesses. According to the Department for Transport the average CO2 emissions for a UK car is 221.4 grams per mile x 60 x2 (return journey) that is a maximum of 26,568 grams of CO2 per supplier if the maximum mileage is travelled. We will be engaging with our suppliers and learning more about their sustainable processes and inviting them to participate in the Carbon Literacy Training to learn more about reducing emissions and being kinder to the planet. We will be putting together a sustainable suppliers list and offering this to interested couples.
- We aim to bulk deliveries as much as possible when goods/equipment need transporting such as using the same local supplier for glassware/chairs/catering equipment.
- Where possible bar staff share journeys to and from the venue to reduce vehicles on the road and emissions. We walk to the venue as much as possible rather than drive.
- It is part of our mission from 2024 onwards to reduce the waste that goes to landfill. We will be offering a food waste collection to divert it from going to landfill. All caterers will be invited to use this as well as fruit waste from the bar. This will be collected and taken to an anaerobic digester facility. This produces renewable energies as well as reducing carbon emissions.
- To keep waste to a minimum, we hire in our glassware for the bar and tables and china cups for hot drinks and do not provide single-use plastic items. We recommend hire companies to our couples for décor.
- We work with a waste disposal company and separate our waste into the various bins for glass, cardboard, metal, food, landfill. We have separate bins behind the bar and are working on recycling bins for front of house to encourage guests to recycle during the event.
- Giving a little back – we are passionate about supporting local businesses and we want to extend that further to supporting local charities. We were involved in an auction for a local charity – Be More Frank and raised over £4,500 by giving away the venue for a couple’s wedding in 2024. We also want to raise awareness of sustainability by offering our venue for
green events and conferences. We are currently discussing possibilities with our local Chamber of Commerce.
- As we grow as a business, we are learning and evolving all the time and are not afraid to embrace change. As we learn more about sustainability and build on our knowledge, we are passing this on to our couples in terms of what items, including decor we do not allow at the venue including fireworks, glitter, balloons, foil table sprinkles. We also only allow petal
- Business practices – We have streamlined our printing and filing systems for couples’ contracts etc. We send electronic copies of promotional materials and paperwork; even the booking contract is e-signed which reduces our paper/printing usage to a minimum.
- We offer online meetings to couples after the initial in person viewing to reduce car emissions and unnecessary travel.
- We aim to calculate our carbon footprint as a baseline to then make a conscious effort to make reductions and offset where needed.
- We have investigated how ethical our bank account is via bank.green and will be switching our account as soon as possible as it revealed that our current one is one of the biggest funders of fossil fuels.
We will continue to attend our County Council’s sustainability networking events to keep updated about their promises and plans for 30 in 2030.
- Long term goals-within the next 5 years we aim to – Install electric car charging points onsite – swap to a greener energy – work with other business within the sustainable world to promote sustainable practices – continue to promote sustainability to all our couples.
- Our commitment to our sustainability values is ongoing and will be reviewed annually with support from The Sustainable Wedding Alliance.