Sunnyside Guest House Sustainability Policy

Sunnyside Sustainability Policy

The Sunnyside is one of twenty-five B&Bs across the UK to be awarded the coveted Gold Award by the Review Panel of world-leading sustainability accreditation partner, Green Tourism.

Achieving a Green Tourism award indicates that our dedication to sustainable practices has been officially verified by a reliable source. Green Tourism has reviewed our operations according to fifteen different sustainability criteria across three major areas; People, Places, and Planet. These consider the social, economic, and environmental actions we undertake, providing a holistic assessment of our sustainability performance.

Some of the actions that we have taken to responsibly lessen our impact on the environment include:

Helping others

At the Sunnyside we believe helping others is our biggest asset in tackling climate change. If the Sunnyside achieves net zero overnight, this alone won’t mark the victory in our battle against climate change. This victory can only be attained through collective action and collaboration. Over the past few years, we’ve dedicated countless hours to researching climate change and exploring ways in which our hospitality business can minimize its impact. To be candid, this endeavor has demanded significant time, effort, and resources. However, we are committed to sharing our journey with others, highlighting not only our successes but also our failures. In doing so, our aim is to pave the way for those who will follow in our footsteps. Actions we have taken include;

  • We presented at events that promote sustainability in the hospitality sector.
  • We are currently volunteering our time to support one of Southport’s largest hotels and two charity’s in Merseyside on their journey to becoming Green Tourism Accredited. This includes carrying out site visits and advising on changes that can be made to satisfy the Green Tourism criteria.
  • We were asked to join Liverpool City Region Sustainability Taskforce as founder members at the beginning of 2023. We were part of the team that helped Liverpool win the most improved destination in 2023 making more progress than any of the other 100 cities now annually participating in the Global Destination Sustainability Index (GDS-I). Liverpool Wins Global Award for Most Improved Sustainable Destination – 2030hub (
  • We are the community lead for Southport’s Surfers Against Sewage Plastic Free Community. We help organizations reduce their single use plastic consumption. To find out more please check out this article and drop us an e-mail. We are happy to help; Going beyond the single-use plastics bans – Plastic Free Communities
  • We work in conjunction with the charity Sustain on their initiative Food for the Planet. We volunteer our time to support organizations reduce their food related carbon footprint.
  • We have copies of consumer related sustainability magazines available in our reception. We also like to talk all this sustainability with guests that show an interest in the topic.


  • We separate recyclable and none recyclable waste including paper, cardboard, plastic, plastic bags, glass, tin, batteries and tablet blister packs. Once sorted the recycled waste is sent off for processing.
  • We have installed heated towel rails in all of our bathrooms to make it easy for guests to reuse towels. We also provide in-room signage to encourage the reuse of towels.
  • Rather than disposing of old towels, they become rags for cleaning.
  • Our cleaning cloths are washed and reused rather than using disposable wipes and cloths.
  • Many items of furniture have been given away to people locally rather than taken to landfills. Old bedding has been donated to an animal charity who use them for dogs bedding.
  • We use refillable ink cartridges in our printer.
  • Recycling bins are now available in our guest rooms as well as communal areas.

 Reusable rather than disposable (Electronic rather than printed)

  • The in-room hospitality tray is stocked with reusable coffee mugs, glasses and spoons rather than plasticware, paper, or styrofoam.
  • In the bathroom we use liquid refillable soaps and body wash rather than single-use toiletries.
  • Since the start of the pandemic, we have been using a guest management system. This has allowed customers to check in remotely and online reducing paper. Since the introduction of this system, the majority of guests no longer print booking confirmations to present at the counter.
  • Guests are not required to print or show confirmations of booking.
  • We ask guests if they would like a receipt to save paper.
  • Substantial effort has been placed on reducing waste, with a recent focus on paper and plastic reduction. We don’t always use conventional ways to package our items. These steps helped us receive the Surfers Against Sewage Plastic Free Communities Gold Award;
    • we bottle our own milk using reusable bottles which saves 5,000 plastic milk potions per year
    • we use compossible bags which saves in excess of 2,500 plastic bags per year
    • our jam is served in reusable glass jars which saves 700 plastic portions per year
    • we bottle our own water in re-usable glass bottles, which saves over 3,250 plastic bottles per year.
    • We make a lot of our own homemade eco-friendly cleaning products and reuse spray bottles.

Water conservation

  • All our toilets are fitted with a dual flush option helping reduce water consumption.
  • All of our guest rooms have the option of a shower. Showers have a reduced water consumption in comparison to baths.
  • Where we have baths in en-suites, smaller 1500mm baths have been installed which helps reduce water consumption.
  • We conduct regular maintenance checks for leaks and ensure bath and basin plugs are in full working order.
  • We ensure washing machines are fully loaded before use.
  • We plant drought – resistant / low maintenance plants which help reduce overall water requirements. Where possible we grow our own plants from seed, reusing previous years pots.
  • Aerators are fitted to all bathroom taps to help create a mixture of water and air, making the stream smoother and helping reduce water usage.
  • Washing machines are A+++ rated. They are also 1400 spin speed which reduces drying times. This model is also designed to reduce water consumption.
  • A pressurized hot water cylinder has been installed providing an instant hot water circulation loop. As a result, the taps don’t have to run for a period until hot water comes through.
  • New kettles have been installed within 6 rooms that have clear markings to help customers boil the water they are going to consume. The kettles are also smaller, reducing water consumption.
  • Dining tables have wipeable tops to reduce the washing of tablecloths.

Heating and cooling

  • In 2023 we reduced gas consumption by 7% based on 2022 figures. This saving has been made by making small adjustments to our practices. In 2024 we hope to reduce consumption by at least 10% based on 2023. We have purchased an air fryer, which should help us achieve this goal. However we are currently working with the consultants at Carbon Happy World to look at alternative forms of heating that will help us move away from natural gas as we set out or roadmap to net-zero by 2035.
  • Boilers are serviced every 12 months to ensure they are running efficiently
  • All bedroom radiators are fitted with a thermostat and have been replaced with convection radiators. The convection radiators are fitted with fins and insulated foil backing making them more efficient than the old flat panel radiators.
  • Fins on the radiators are cleaned regularly, this cleans the airways making the radiator more efficient.
  • We ensure radiators in rooms are turned off when unoccupied.
  • Separate boilers have been installed to service different floors of the building. We try to fill one floor before opening the next. This helps reduce energy consumption.
  • Radiators are fitted with Aladdin auto air valves negating the need for bleeding the radiators and ensuring they are always running efficiently.
  • We have recently installed blinds to the windows, this helps regulate the temperature within the rooms, keeping them cool during the summer. This is most helpful in our front south-facing rooms reducing the use of fans to cool guests. In addition, all curtains in guest rooms are lined for their thermal qualities but are also blackout to block the sun on warmer days.
  • 8 of our 10 bedrooms have been insulated with 400 to 600mm insulation to keep rooms warm during the winter months. We use Knauf Eko Insulation which is “one of the most environmentally friendly and sustainable products around – it’s made using recycled glass”
  • Double glazing has been installed throughout the building, with the exception of situations where it is necessary to comply with fire safety regulations.
  • Draft excluders on the bottom of bedroom doors to reduce drafts and keep the bedrooms warm.
  • We have offset the carbon footprint by helping support a small-scale hydro-electricity project in India.

Electrical appliances and energy consumption

  • We have taken out a 100% renewable electricity contract. This means our supplier will buy enough renewable electricity from the network to match our use.  This encourages investment in renewable infostructure.
  • In 2023 we reduced our electricity consumption by a massive 41% in comparison to 2022 figures. This followed an electricity audit at the end of 2022 where we tested appliance efficiency using an appliance meter. We initially cut an estimated 25% by disposing of  two very old inefficient freezers and replacing with a much smaller modern chest freezer. Since we have taken many further steps including swapping our old dryer for a heat pump tumble dryer, installing sensor lights.
  • All lights throughout the building including shaving lights and bedside lights are LED.
  • Washing machines are A+++ rated and have 1400 spin speed to reduce drying times.
  • During summer months all washing is dried naturally on the line. We have a drying space on communal land at the back of the property.
  • New kettles that have been installed within 6 rooms are low energy / fast boil. The kettles have a widget inside that allows you to boil exactly the right amount of water that you plan to consume, which helps to reduce energy consumption.
  • The fridges installed in the rooms are A+ energy efficient. We turn them off wen the rooms are not in use and adjust the thermostats in the colder moths.
  • We don’t have electric showers; we have a pumped heated water cylinder with instant hot water.
  • We operate a ‘switch off’ policy by turning off TV’s, computer equipment and our printer when not in use.
  • The LED TV’s used in our bedrooms have an average consumption of 31w when switched on which is around half the usage of a traditional light bulb. When on standby they use 0.3w.
  • In-room signage is in place to encourage switching off lights and appliances when they aren’t in use.
  • Our outdoor and porch lights are solar-powered.


  • We took the catering pledge with Food for the Planet. As part of our pledge we committed to reduce meet servings, switch to better meat and dairy, reduce food waste, serve Fairtrade products, serve seasonal produce and source locally.
  • Unused or leftover food is given away locally to prevent wastage.
  • We now offer a menu made up of Vegetarian and Vegan dishes that have a low carbon footprint.
  • All dishes featured on our menus are accompanied by labels informing our guests of the carbon footprint.
  • We have a good stock rotation system in place so food going out of date soonest is used first which helps prevent food wastage.
  • When we purchase food from supermarkets we walk to the shops. We don’t drive a car.
  • We purchase free-range eggs from a local farm.
  • We purchase fruit and vegetables from a local farm when its in season.
  • Waste oil from the kitchen is recycled.
  • Our in room consumables are purchased from ethical sources.
  • We joined the “Guardians of Grub” program to help reduce our food wastage. In our first 12 months our food wastage vastly dropped, especially when it came to meat and dairy. We have reduced our food waste by at least 40% (estimated). We used to cook extra food to ensure every item that left the kitchen was of the highest standard. We have now achieve the same standard but working in different ways. While there is still room for improvement we are happy with progress made so far. We now aim to reduce our food waste by 50% by 2030 in line with the global waste reduction targets set by the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 12.3 and are further defined by the UK’s Food Waste Reduction Roadmap.
  • We have been donating items such as excess homemade cakes to the food bank, helping those in need.
  • We now make our own jams and ketchup along with other homemade food. We package items such as jams and ketchup in reusable packaging instead of single-use plastic. We now provide a healthier product with fewer preservatives. Ingredients that are harmful to guests with allergies and intolerance have been avoided. We sell some of our homemade goods with the proceeds going to charity.
  • We have increased the amount of produce we purchase from local independent suppliers and farms. This has greatly reduced our food miles, for example our bacon previously came from Denmark and it now comes from Aigburth which is around 20 miles away (as the crow flies). Buying direct from the farm also means we know the origins of our food and the farmer gets a fairer deal.
  • We have calculated the carbon footprint for each dish on our breakfast menu so customers can make informed decisions about what they eat and the impact it has upon the environment.
  • Going home-made means, we can offer a greater number of vegetarian options that are better for the environment, and we can use the same ingredients in many dishes to prevent spoilage and in turn food waste.


  • We are fully trained beekeepers and have our own hive. We also volunteer every Saturday during the summer to help maintain the apiary at our local park.
  • We have a bug hotel on site.
  • In 2023, we partnered with the charity Ripple Africa to plant 500 trees. For each guest who booked directly with us, we paid to plant a tree.
  • In 2024 we will be selling our homemade jam as souvenirs with all the proceeds going to Ripple Africa. Just £1.00 is enough to plant a fruit tree through this program. These trees are provided to vulnerable families in rural areas, enabling them to consume the fruit and sell any surplus at local markets. This creates a natural incentive for tree protection, as fruit trees not only offer food but also generate income. The project is also an important way of improving nutrition. In Malawi, malnutrition is a large cause of death among children, and poor diet can lead to general ill health and disease. The fruit trees normally bare fruit at 4 to 5 years, and trees are fully grown at 20 years. There is a Shadrack in the picture below is one of the beneficiaries of the tree planting scheme.


  • We use soap and toiletries that are paraben free and don’t contain unsustainable palm oil or SLS. This also applies to our laundry detergent and dish soap.
  • All paints used on the interior of the building are low VOC.
  • Our cleaning products are Vegan Society approved and cruelty-free.
  • We avoid the use of herbicides and pesticides. White vinegar is used to treat weeds. This works really well in warm conditions and in direct sunlight.
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