When we moved to Graig Wen in September 2007, we didn’t know a soul round here. Now we have the pleasure of working and playing with all kinds of local people who we can count on through thick and thin. You just never know when you’re going to need a tray of eggs, a tractor or an extra pair of hands. That’s just one of the reasons we use as many local food producers, crafts people, suppliers and givers of good advice as we can. By supporting us you are supporting our local economy which mostly relies on visitors and the odd sheep to survive.
As well as local people and our great team, our family, friends, volunteers and regular customers all contribute to our sense of community here. We aim to extend the same warm welcome – or croeso cynnes – to our guests as we have found here in Wales.
We are passionate about sharing and protecting our special surroundings.
Custodians of a Special Environment
Graig Wen is in Snowdonia National Park and part of our land near the Mawddach Estuary is also a Site os Special Scientific Interest (SSSI). We are privileged to be the custodians of such a rare and special place. Habitats range from ancient woodland to meadows, streams and salt marsh.
Since we arrived in 2007, we have been making both short and long term changes to enhance this special environment and reduce the impact of our business on it.
We are working to reduce our environmental impact through minimizing use of gas, electricity and water and reducing waste and sewage. We are conscious that many of guests arrive by car and, as Graig Wen is well served by public transport, we encourage people to lessen their carbon footprint by using public transport to reach us or leave the car behind to explore once they are here.
We are developing partnerships with other organisations to help us manage areas of neglected woodland, encourage native broad leaved trees and protect other flora and fauna. We aim to balance the land use to create varied habitats suitable for short-term coppicing, wildlife and woodland regeneration – and of course camping! We have erected bird-boxes and created other sanctuaries for wildlife around the site. Campers are requested to assist in our woodland management scheme by buying the sustainably sourced firewood we sell and not collecting dead wood from the woodland floor. We have improved boundaries to enable controlled grazing, thus encouraging the establishment of ground flora and woodland succession. Planting throughout involves native species sourced from local provenance. We are improving biodiversity in the meadows by a careful programme of targeted mowing.
Around 10 years ago we planted a new orchard of native Welsh apple varieties. More recently wee have planted some wildflower banks and used lockdown to develop an organic vegetable patch.
We have installed more energy efficient systems to provide heat and hot water and improved insulation significantly in the building. Our water is filtered from a mountain cavern and we conserve water through use of low flush WCs and compost toilets for the camp site.
We monitor our energy usage and have replaced all lights with energy efficient bulbs, and use exterior down lights, some red lights which are better for nocturnal wildlife and sensors. We use a green electricity provider. Please help us by turning off lights, TVs and chargers when not in use.
We are proud to be in the heart of Snowdonia International Dark Skies Reserve and have been chosen to be a Dark Skies Ambassador.
Play your part
We serve locally produced food and drink whenever possible and champion the use the wonderful meat, dairy and fish produce of North Wales. We really encourage you to shop local and discover some of the wonderful local produce and people!
We ask all our guests to recycle waste and provide facilities for recycling glass, paper, plastic, cans and to compost vegetable waste. We try and use local suppliers, materials and contractors wherever possible. We have significantly reduced our use of single use plastic and always looking for new suppliers and ways of working towards reduction of single use plastic.
The cleaning products we use are eco-friendly and we bulk buy so we can refill and re-use as much as possible. Our marketing and guest communications are increasingly digital or use recycled paper.
We recycle or compost over 70% of our waste – please help us to improve our impact on beautiful Snowdonia by thinking carefully about your choices and how you dispose of your waste.