Yesterday the Devon Tourism Awards were announced. We’re delighted that Wheatland Farm has added to its trophy collection: the Silver in the Ethical Responsible and Sustainable Award (and commended in the Self Catering Category). It was the 10th Anniversary awards – and we were reminded that we were there at the beginning too, winning Silver back in 2009/10 (and some Golds in the intervening years). We’ve just checked, and in the past 10 years we’ve won over 10 awards for green holidays. So we’re thrilled to celebrate a whole decade at the top of genuinely sustainable tourism!
The Award recognises how Wheatland Farm uses low carbon eco lodge accommodation to fund its conservation work. But we also want to heartily thank all our lovely visitors from near and far, because it’s your stays that underpin our 21 acres of meadows, woodland, ponds and orchards.
This one’s yours too!
Wheatland Farm is tiny, but still boasts over 200 species of flowering plants, 7 types of bumblebee, 9 bat species, 21 species of butterfly and even 16 types of dragonflies. Best of all, the numbers are going up, and this summer we saw several new species, despite farmland biodiversity being in steep decline nationally. So our project is clearly working.
Some of our species are rare, or important for other reasons, but mostly we have ‘ordinary’ British wildlife – creatures that everyone should have access to. Whether guests are watching woodpeckers on the bird feeders by the lodges, spotting barn owls hunting at dusk, or startling a deer in the woodland, they’re reconnecting with Britain’s natural heritage.
But it’s not just about the wildlife, it’s about offering lower carbon holidays overall. Because you can’t protect wildlife while ignoring the climate crisis. That’s why Wheatland Farm generates renewable electricity, and takes great care about less obvious impacts, especially those ‘unseen’ carbon footprints hidden in repairs and refurbishments. So whether it’s piano lids as headboards or vintage colanders and wedding hats as light shades, it’s about a different, and better approach.