When starting your wedding planning one of your first tasks is likely to be drawing up a shortlist of wedding venues to view. If you’d like to have a sustainable wedding, it’s also the first opportunity you have to make a positive impact.
I’m pleased to say that we’re now spoilt in the UK for fantastic environmentally conscious, sustainable wedding venues, and it’s likely that’s there is one near you. Which is great as staying close to home, or close to the majority of your guests, is a great way to reduce the carbon footprint of your wedding.
There are venues for every style and shape of wedding, from luxury farm retreats to grand country homes.
Why should you choose a sustainable wedding venue?
There are quite a few reasons why a a sustainable venue is the right choice… the top five are:
- Be Planet Positive: Weddings are often associated with a large carbon footprint due to the amount of energy, water, and materials consumed during the day. By choosing a sustainable venue, you can not only reduce your carbon footprint, but actually have a positive environmental impact.
- Healthier Environment: Sustainable venues typically use natural, more environmentally conscious products and cleaning supplies, and have better air quality due to better ventilation and use of natural light. Choosing a sustainable venue can contribute to a healthier environment for you, your guests, staff, and the surrounding community.
- Boost the Local Economy: Sustainable venues often source their food and products locally, supporting local farmers and businesses. This can contribute to a stronger local economy and a more resilient community.
- Cost Savings: Sustainable venues often have lower operating costs due to their energy-efficient design, processes and practices. This can translate into savings for you, leaving you with more money for other elements of your wedding.
- Meaningful, Memorable Experiences: Choosing a sustainable venue can provide meaningful, memorable experiences for your and your guests, showcasing your values and demonstrating your commitment to a more sustainable future for all.
Overall, choosing a sustainable venue can have a positive impact on the environment, the local community, and your budget. It can also provide a more meaningful and memorable wedding experience for everyone involved.
What is an environmentally conscious venue?
To truly be an environmentally conscious wedding venue, they must be committed to reducing their impact on the environment and have sustainable, ethical practices in place. For example, they should ensure that they not only reduce or eliminate waste, that their suppliers and clients do too. Now that doesn’t mean that as a couple you will be expected to manage the waste produced by your wedding, but it does mean that the venue will work with you or your wedding planner, to ensure that waste is recycled, composted or reused and not sent to landfill.
The aim for an environmentally conscious venue is to run off grid, harnessing energy from the world around us – solar, water, wind and earth. Some will be purpose built using sustainable building materials, and other will have their own onsite bore hole to provide water, but all will have a range of policies that help them to be as sustainable as possible.
What are certificates or accreditation should you look for in a wedding venue?
In 2022, the results of our survey, 69% of couples told us that they were more likely to book a venue if they have a sustainable accreditation. But what does that mean in practice? An accreditation or certification that has been independently verified shows a couple that the business is doing what they say, and in terms of sustainability, means that they are balancing people, profit and planet.
So what should you look for? We have developed a standard relevant to businesses in the wedding industry called the Sustainable Wedding Alliance Accreditation. You can see the businesses that have achieved the in our members directory. The accreditation recognises the commitment of wedding businesses that are actively working to become more sustainable.
B Corp is another certification that is becoming increasingly popular for businesses in the wedding industry, with one of our members, The Wellbeing Farm being the first independant weddings and events venue in the UK to achieve the certification.
We work with member venues to understand what sustainability means to them, putting in place long term strategies for their business, and the way they run weddings.
If you’re a venue and would like to become sustainable venue and would like to be featured, or you have recently got married an amazing eco venue, we’d love to hear from you. Drop us an email and let us know.