Food touches every part of our lives. The choices we make about where our food comes from, how it is produced and prepared has the power to support a healthier future for people and the planet. As a conservation charity we care deeply about this. We will continually look to find ways to be as sustainable as we can in the running of this pub.
The National Trust aims to reduce its use of fossil fuels by 50% by 2020, both for heat and electricity. As part of the organisation we are encouraged to ‘grow our own’ energy on property. In 2014 Stickle Ghyll was chosen as the pilot hydro scheme in the Lake District with the intention to run the pub on green energy going into the future. The Stickle Ghyll hydro, a system that uses fast-flowing water to generate energy. The hydro was completed in 2015 and delivered 385,421 kWh in its first year, that’s enough energy to power 90 homes and 7% more energy than anticipated. In 2017 more than half of the pub’s electricity came from hydropower. By using water flowing down the fellside in the valley, the hydro helps reduce environmental impacts by supplying clean, renewable energy year-round. Any excess electricity is also fed into the National Grid, freeing up funds for the National Trust’s vital conservation work.
Using hydroelectricity to power Sticklebarn is a huge leap forward. We are probably amongst only a handful of pubs in the country to be powered by water. But there is still so much more that we can do, from the way we handle waste and the equipment we use in the kitchen to how we source our ingredients.
On the back of the hydro project, Sticklebarn embarked on a project with Small World Consulting, to Carbon Footprint our menu. We now print the CO2e (carbon equivalent- which takes into account all greenhouse gases) of each dish on our menu. We have found this really helpful when developing our menu, as we found out that beef was one on the highest carbon emitters. We generally only have one beef dish on our menu and are committed to keep it that way. We decided to print our findings on the menu as we wanted to give our visitor the choice to have a low impact meal if they so wished and also helps to inform visitors who potentially commit to the 10 tonne carbon lifestyle.