Award winning Eco friendly Cottages
We have been lucky at Treshnish. When we moved here, these Isle of Mull cottages were in need of attention. We have had to restore and renovate them from scratch, over the last 20+ years. This has given us the opportunity to make them as eco-friendly as possible from the start.
In 1997 we made a strong commitment to become sustainable and to lessen our impact on the environment. We joined the Green Tourism Business Scheme in 1999.
We Reduce (our consumption), we Recycle (whatever can be recycled on the island) and we Reuse (whatever we can).
The farm is managed to benefit bio-diversity and wildlife, the eco friendly cottages are managed to reduce our carbon footprint whilst providing a wonderful environment in which to stay. We have adopted site-appropriate domestic scale renewables (wind, solar) to generate electricity – we are currently generating over 80% of our annual energy need.
On this page you can see what we have been doing, and some ideas for what you can do too, while you are staying with us. The Treshnish & Haunn Cottages Green Policy is here .
Explore what we are doing
Welcome to Walker’s Scheme
On Friday and Saturday there is a scheduled bus from Salen to Calgary…Read more…
In addition to clothes dryers in each cottage, we have a drying space available in the wood-chip boiler room which guests are welcome to use.
Electric Cars Welcome – Charging Point
Part of the Mull Electric Charging-point Network…Read more…
Cyclists Welcome Scheme
Member of Cyclists Welcome Scheme…Read more…
We have dry storage for your bicycles in the Recycling Shed.
There is additional clothes/kit drying space available in the Boiler House.
Environmentally friendly renovations
We use local suppliers wherever possible…Read more…
Our eco friendly cottages meet or exceed current insulation in building standards – in some cottages we have used sheeps wool insulation, and in the farmhouse we have used wood fibre insulation.
Double glazing throughout with airtight doors to reduce energy wastage.
The wood fired central heating in Treshnish Cottages use thermostatic controls.
We have fitted low energy fittings as standard, and now installing LED where new fittings are required.
Natural paints (Earthborn, Ecospaint, NewLife Paints) used throughout, though sometimes necessary to use non natural paint (such as yacht paint on external doors!).
Wood burning (no coal) stoves.
Renewable energy & heating
Our renewable journey started with …Read more…
Our aim is to produce as much energy as the business uses (self sufficiency goal).
We can now generate in excess of 80% of total annual electricity usage on site (Treshnish Farm, holiday cottages, farmhouse).
4.2 sq.m of solar panels for hot water on Toechtamhor and farmhouse 2006.
Proven 6kW wind turbine October 2009 – supplies Studio, farm office/laundry.
3.7kW Solar PV panels in 2011- supplies workshop, woodchip boiler pumps.
Kingspan 6kW wind turbine November 2012 – supplies farmhouse.
Additional electricity imported at Treshnish (farmhouse, cottages, office, laundry) is from 100% renewables source (Ecotricity).
We installed a District Heating Scheme with a Froeling Biomass boiler (wood chip supplied by local community woodland company from timber grown a few miles away) in 2009. This supplies the farmhouse, office, laundry, 4 Treshnish cottages (saves an estimated 50T of carbon a year).
Local wood fuel, not coal
Woodburning stoves in 7 out of 8 cottages…Read more…
Uses Mull grown timber (softwoods).
Low energy laundry/drying room
Converted decaying old shed into Laundry …Read more…
Using passive solar gain from south facing windows for drying laundry.
Concrete floor and masses of insulation to store solar heat.
Heated by woodchip.
Uses wind turbine electricity.
We use outdoor drying lines whenever possible for drying bedlinen and towels.
Recycling ethos and facilities
Recycling shed/log store built in 2010 …Read more…
Each cottage has a compost bin and we use collected vegetable waste to make compost in our garden
Reduced waste going to landfill by 40% between 2010 and 2014.
Responsible disposal of redundant items
Use local recycling facility, both for recycling items we can no longer use but also for shopping – Castaways in Craignure (funds raised are distributed locally)
Eco friendly cleaning materials
Ecover, Bio D cleaning materials …Read more…
Supply eco-friendly cleaning products in the cottages including Ecover dishwashing tablets and soap powder for washing machines. (soft water means only half the amount is needed).
Monitoring & reducing consumption
Monitoring of electric and heating use …Read more…
Monitoring energy production v. energy use.
Guests take responsibility for their own energy use through metered usage.
Turning thermostats down by a degree – better to turn it up than waste excess.
We source the most energy efficient appliances – 95% are A+, A++ or A+++.
We keep records of Energy ratings of new appliances.
Minimmum standard of low energy light bulbs.
Programme of upgrading light fittings to LED.
We supply kettles with cup marks on the side to make it easier for you to only boil the water you actually need each time, thus saving energy.
Outdoor washing lines & indoor clothes airers for each cottage.
To comply with Visit Scotland requirement for tumble drier, we have one at the farm that guests can use.
Supporting local businesses
Great local produce available on the island …Read more…
We actively support Dervaig Producers Market, fortnightly during summer months.
Dervaig Village Shop – recently extended – you can get almost everything you might need here.
We supply guests with our own free range eggs when we have enough.
Our own beef and mutton/lamb for sale most of the year.
Would like to supply home grown vegetables but haven’t got there yet…
We are part of a small group of producers who set up the Mull & Iona Food Trail in 2015.
Reducing our carbon footprint
Working to balance our Carbon Footprint …Read more…
In May 2014 we offset 75 tonnes of carbon dioxide (estimated consumption from 2014 to date) via ClimateCare, where the money is used on ‘greenhouse gas reduction projects in order to reduce the rate of global climate change’.
Planting trees, putting up bird boxes
Planted over 2500 native broadleaved saplings…Read more…
Swallows: When we converted farm steading into Studio, swallows needed replacement nest sites – so we put swallow boxes up in the new farm building (now used by sparrows!).
Housemartins: to encourage visiting pairs we put a Housemartin box on north wall of farm steading.
Barn Owls: 2 barn owl boxes put up in 2010. Barn owls seen at Treshnish regularly in 2012 – not in our boxes though!
Various other bird boxes in woodland and trees.
The Green Tourism Business Scheme
Strongly support GTBS principles …Read more…
Members since 1999, Gold Award holders since 2002.
We were awarded the GTBS Goldstar Award 2011 and the GTBS Carbon Footprint Award 2011.
Involved in organizing Holiday Mull ‘eco conference’ Feb.2012 to try and encourage further GTBS membership on Mull & Iona.
Mull and Iona Eco Charter
Local initiative supporting energy saving …Read more…