Loire Valley self catering accommodation, France

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Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Loire Valley self catering accommodation, France

We recycle all recyclable materials, compost all organic waste, & are in process of re-planting our land with locally sourced trees & plants which thrive. This year it was cherry trees and plums to add to our apple, apricot, cherry, peach, walnut & hazlenuts.

We heat our buildings with wood taken from our land or local sustainable sources. We have insulated to better than recommended levels to ensure excellent heat retention during winter months (reducing the need for heating) thus also ensuring a cooler environment during summer months. All labour & materials used in the renovations were locally sourced & with respect to local traditions.

We have double glazed all our windows & doors, & use low energy light bulbs wherever possible. We collect rainwater for garden use and a project for this autumn is to try & reinstate the use of well water for garden use. We also are in process of researching the use of alternative energy sources e.g wind, solar, geothermal & are committed to becoming more energy self sufficient within 5 years. Wind power being the current favourite, watch this space!

We encourage all our guests to buy food stuffs locally to support the local economy, (predominantly made up of small/medium scale farms). In our small farm road alone you will find a veritable “route gastronomique”! with farms producing goats cheese, yoghurt, milk, charolai beef, apples, & foie gras all within 1-5km. Guests are welcome help themselves to the well stocked veg & herb garden on site, fresh eggs are also available from time to time depending on the performance of our resident chickens!

We encourage our guests to recycle by providing clearly marked bins for sorting, to save energy & water. We recycle up to 60% of our waste. All vegetable kitchen waste is fed to the chickens. Anything that is left, and grass clippings are used for compost. We have a fosse (non-mains) sewerage filter system on site, which via a well-managed process of naturally occurring bacteria is filtered & ultimately runs clean water into our adjoining field. This waste system focuses us on the use of only bio-friendly products in our garden and home.

We support & recommend to our guests local bars, restaurants, markets & events; the majority of our guests utilise our immediate local amenities on a regular basis. We have a large selection of brochures for local attractions & events (not just the obvious ones but also those which are less well marketed) we actively encourage the guest’s participation.

We are acutely aware of the need to respect and understand the traditions and values of the region. We encourage our guests to adopt a similar approach to their vacation. We are closely integrated with our local community; our children attend the local school in le Grand Pressigny and we provide support both financially and with our time, helping out at local events. We strive to use email in our business practices, to keep our office as paper-free as possible. We own one car and by careful planning of our work/leisure/school run requirements we manage to minimise the number of trips made.

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