Newlife for Green Hotel

A family-owned hotel at the forefront of pioneering sustainable tourism is the first in the UK to use recycled paint on the refurbishment of their rooms.

Battlesteads Hotel in Wark, Northumberland, a holder of a coveted Gold Award from the Perth- based Green Tourism Business Scheme, has painted several of their rooms with the recycled water-based paint.

The owners, Richard and Dee Slade, were drawn into sustainability out of necessity when they bought the hotel five years ago and discovered there was not enough energy in the area to power the lights in the 17-bedrooms and reception rooms of the hotel. They solved the immediate problem with low energy bulbs. Inspired by the cost-saving measures this offered, they also replaced the old, extremely expensive oil fuelled boiler with a biomass boiler instead.

“With these two initial cost-saving measures put in place, the business automatically started down a sustainable path. This has now become a passion.” said Katie Meyrick, the Green Officer of the Battlesteads Hotel.

When faced with painting the interior of the hotel, this passion led them to research recycled paints. They discovered Newlife which was founded by paint chemist Keith Harrison for the express purpose of collecting and reusing waste emulsion. This left over paint is taken from the household waste stream where they reckon that over 15% (50 million litres) of all paint sold last year is left to waste.

Newlife is supplied from the local council with approximately 1500 litres of old paint a week. This is then remixed, re-tinted (using the recycled paint), thickened (using clay, ground limestone and a sugar derivative) to a uniform standard and consistency and repackaged in recyclable plastic tins. The old tins are then recycled.

The cost to buy Newlife paint is the same as an average quality trade paint and yet whilst the costs of the ingredients to manufacture fresh paint has gone up and are forecast to rise further, the price to buy recycled paint will remain stagnant and depending on quantities produced, it may even reduce.

“Newlife has a commitment to providing a high quality product that gives excellent value for money” says Keith Harrison of Newlife paints.

“They are an example of a sustainable business working on several levels. We were extremely impressed with their product, its price and their level of service. It is fantastic to be able to support a company such as this by using their paint in the hotel and I am sure that although we may be the first hotel to use them, we will certainly not be the last.” says Richard Slade of Battlesteads Hotel.

Battlesteads Hotel which is situated 12 miles outside Hexham has been shortlisted for the prestigious Green Tourism Business Scheme Goldstar Award which will be awarded to the greenest hotel in the scheme. The Goldstar winner will be announced at an awards ceremony at the Royal Thames Yacht Club in London during Green Tourism Week 6-12 June 2011.

The Green Tourism Business Scheme is the only certification program in the UK endorsed by VisitEngland, VisitScotland and VisitWales and has been validated by the International Centre for Responsible Tourism since 2008. Operated by a not-for-profit organisation, Green Business, there are over 2,300 GTBS members throughout the UK and Ireland.

Source: Peppercorn PR