Local businesses strike gold in green awards

Senwick House proprietors Tanya Austin-Baird and Geraldine Austin with Angela Lamont from the Crichton Carbon Centre.
Senwick House proprietors Tanya Austin-Baird and Geraldine Austin with Angela Lamont from the Crichton Carbon Centre.

A select group of local businesses have scooped top awards via a local sustainability programme – beating off more than 20 other businesses in the running. Galloway based Senwick House, Galloway Lodge and Galloway Activity Centre, Kellwood Engineering, Happy Faces Nursery and Lotus Electrical of Dumfries and Lockerbie’s Queen’s Hotel wowed judges with their all round efforts to become more sustainable through the Crichton Carbon Centre’s Sustainable Process Improvement programme. All have slashed their waste streams and cut gas and electricity consumption through a vast array of moves. This has not only helped the businesses get a handle on costs but also, critically, limit their impact on the environment.

Senwick House proprietor Geraldine Austin told us “We really went out of our way to make the programme work for us. Being a rural business we are very aware of the importance of sustainability and really wanted to improve on this front. We’ve tried to weave sustainability into our core values and are delighted our efforts have been recognised”

Senwick’s main move has been to eliminate their oil central heating and replace it with a district biomass scheme. This alone has reduced their carbon foot print by three quarters. They have backed this with a behaviour change programme for staff which harnesses staffs’ own ideas.

Nearby Galloway Lodge and Galloway Activity Centre have been busy in their own right. Highly sustainable in their ethos anyway they have used the programme to build on their own measures. Galloway Lodge have recently installed LED lighting and eco-friendly appliances to augment their own recycling and water saving efforts. Galloway Activity Centre utilised the programme to start discussions on their new eco-lodges.

Part sponsors of the programme Dumfries and Galloway Council attended the event. Head of Economy, Environment and Infrastructure Councillor Colin Smyth told us “Getting a handle on resource efficiency is critical these days if a business is to survive the long term. These businesses have been tireless with their efforts and we hope they’ll keep up the good work and wish them every success in the future”.