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Award winners on roof of woodland court
Jane Loveys, Chris Weiss, Peter Phelps and Nigel Hamilton by the solar panels on the roof of Woodland Court.

Press Release - 24 February 2009

University of Bath gets gold for going green

The University’s Accommodation and Hospitality Services is celebrating winning a prestigious national award for its outstanding environmental initiatives.

Bath is the first University department in the country to gain a gold standard from the Green Tourism Business Scheme (GTBS) – the leading sustainable tourism certification scheme in the UK.

It is also the first business in Bath to obtain the gold standard rating.

Businesses are assessed by a qualified grading advisor against a rigorous set of criteria covering areas such as energy and water efficiency, waste management, and biodiversity. Bronze, silver or gold standards can then be awarded depending on how well the criteria has been met.

The scheme has 2,000 members in the UK from a wide range of business types including accommodation providers, visitor attractions and corporate offices.

In the assessment report the GTBS praised the efforts of the department’s broad team for co-ordinating new with established initiatives and drawing in lots of local support.

The report said: “Management and marketing activities are integrated, staff clearly led, and utility usage very closely tracked. Communication of ‘environment’ is very visible, staff are inclusively and systematically trained up, and the web is used as a pervasive medium.”

Jane Loveys, Head of Accommodation & Hospitality Services at the University, said: “We are absolutely delighted to have been awarded a gold standard from the GTBS for what has been a real team effort by the department with support from other staff and students.

“Sustainability is a key value of the department. Every decision we make considers the impact on the environment.

“A good example of this is our new student campus accommodation block - Woodland Court. It received an award for ‘excellent’ environmental design by the Building Research Establishment’s BREEAM Environmental Assessment Scheme.

“It boasts a number of features aimed at reducing environmental and energy impact including excellent insulation, automatic lighting, and even solar panels on the roof to provide hot water for the showers.

“It is great to receive recognition for our efforts but we will continue to strive to do all we can as a department and a university to protect the environment for future generations.”

Peter Phelps, Energy and Environment Manager at the University added: “This department is leading the way in taking responsibility for its environmental impacts. They have responded well to pressure from our main customers, our students, who are more and more environmentally-literate and aware, and increasingly expect a high performance from the institution of their choice.”

Robin Bischert, Chief Executive of Bath Tourism Plus, has praised the University for achieving the gold standard. He said: "This is excellent news for the University of Bath and we're delighted they have received a gold rating from GTBS after all their efforts to make their accommodation as environmentally friendly as possible.

“It's a great achievement and we're very pleased to see a business in Bath receiving a gold rating which is the first of its kind for the city.”

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