From the outset we aimed to be different, to cater for the alternative. When Over the Rainbow came into being in the summer of 2003, there were (and still are) very few vegetarian guest houses, there were very few female focused retreats in rural areas, especially where minority communities were made to feel welcome. We are ‘straight friendly’ – everyone will enjoy a warm welcome
The goddess themed bedrooms were deliberately chosen to celebrate female history, myths and legends and also to reflect different cultures.
You are welcome to bring your well behaved pets with you, we reserve one of our bedrooms (Nefertiti) for guests who want to bring their pets with them. (We reserve the right to levy an extra £10 cleaning charge for this room).
We participate in the Green Key International scheme, we are Gold standard members of the Green Tourism Association and support Greentraveller. We have deliberately chosen to follow these recognised schemes instead of the traditional accommodation grading schemes as this more closely represents what we believe in and aspire to. The accommodation star grading schemes make no reference to environmental impacts and instead concentrate on cosmetic appearances.
We recognise our responsibility to manage the environmental impacts of our activities, products and services within the tourism and hospitality sector. We have assessed our activities, identified our environmental impacts and aim to reduce and minimises these impacts.
CONSUMPTION OF RESOURCES: We constantly monitor and evaluate our consumption of resources (heat energy, water, electricity) thereby aiming to reduce our pollution and energy consumption.
WATER: minimize water waste by monitoring use and installing equipment which conserves metered water, eliminate unnecessary towel washing, retain rainwater for grounds use.
RECYCLING: recycle materials where practicable, facilities are provided for guests to recycle (see unit on the stairway) and compost where practical.
RENEWABLE ENERGY: We aim to reduce our carbon footprint by reducing use of fossil fuels. To this end we have invested heavily in renewables. In 2007 we installed Solar thermal panels for hot water. In 2012 we installed a solar PV array which produces most of our electricity most of the year round and also contributes to the national grid. In 2016 we replaced the old oil central heating boiler with a biomass system.
APPLIANCES: Where practicable procure the highest energy rated appliances when replacing old appliances.
CLEANING: To source wherever possible bio friendly chemicals in order to minimize our chemical impact on the environment. To use Cleaning Companies who use eco friendly products. We aim to eliminate the use of single use containers of shower gels, soap and shampoos etc
FOOD: To source locally produced food from our own gardens and suppliers who operate organic and animal welfare practices to achieve the best quality and minimum food miles. To reduce waste by not using single portion pots eg jams/preserves/uht milk,
INFORMATION To ensure that all employees are aware of the Environmental Policy and are encouraged to contribute improved environmental practices. To communicate the Environmental Policy to guests through the effective use of printed and electronic mediums and to encourage environmentally responsible behaviour and provide information on healthy and green activities during your stay: cycling, walking, public transport, electric car recharging.