At Beautiful Bells we wholeheartedly support eco and ethical practices. Weddings are large, expensive events, so those who show respect for our planet when planning their big day, get our respect in return.
In our last post we discussed being eco-conscious when sourcing wedding flowers (think seasonal/local or Fairtrade). Today we’re specifically looking at ways to minimise our carbon footprint when it comes to wedding transport.
We’re not talking about how the bride gets to the church, or how the couple sweep off into the sunset, tin cans a-bouncing (that’s for another day but in case you’re wondering, a traditional horse and cart is your best bet for an eco-win!) We’re talking about how all your guests are getting to your wedding as this is what represents the biggest carbon footprint for your event. If you want to consciously minimise travel, and therefore pollution, choose a wedding venue close to the majority of your guests. We know it can be tricky though, and you may have friends and relatives flying in from abroad. You can investigate offsetting the air travel for such people. To read more about offsetting carbon emission visit goldstandard.org.
Having your ceremony and reception in the same venue is a thumbs up, and we know many outdoor, glamping weddings lend themselves to this, with the legal bit being done in advance and an outdoor blessing taking place on the day. It’s just a short walk back to your bell tent accommodation at such events! If you do need to transport your guests from one place to another, or you want to purposely bring your guests to your outdoor glamping venue in a sustainable manner, then look at coach travel. Not only does it save the planet, but it also minimises the risk of traffic… and your guests getting lost!
We recommend… The Big Lemon
From 2007-2017 Brighton-based transport company The Big Lemon used waste cooking oil from local restaurants to run their vehicles. The waste oil was collected from chip shops, restaurants and hotels across Sussex and then processed in a factory near Eastbourne to make biodiesel, a plant-based alternative to regular mineral diesel.
After ten years, several factors (including struggling to source the oil in necessary quantities) meant that using biodiesel was no longer an option for The Big Lemon. It didn’t stop them striving towards their vision for sustainable transport however and they now operate a zero-emission, electric fleet. They operate six bus routes in Brighton and Hove and their vehicles are powered by solar energy generated via panels on the roof of their bus depot.
Founder and Chief Executive of The Big Lemon, Tom Druitt, said, “as air quality in cities has become more and more dangerous to breathe and the effects of climate change are felt across the world, it becomes ever more important to invest in sustainable transport for our communities.”
Group coach travel = FUN!
For weddings, The Big Lemon can provide anything from a 16-seater minibus, to three full-sized coaches. They pride themselves on a personal, friendly service, and they’ve proved to be quite a hit with wedding parties! Picture the scene; the sun’s shining, you’re dolled up in all your finery and you’re looking forward to making yourself at home in your bell tent. There’s the promise of booze, amazing food and energetic dancing. A coach journey offers a great opportunity to catch up with old friends and make new acquaintances on your way to the glamping wedding.
The Big Lemon are a great example of a social enterprise (businesses that do good!) They’re passionate about doing their bit for the environment and they also give back to the local community via their Happy Bus scheme where they provide a free bus for someone who needs it. Last year, for example, they supported someone fighting deportation by taking a coach full of his friends to his court hearing in London.
Visit The Big Lemon’s website to book wedding transport, to nominate a group for the Happy Bus scheme or to browse their other services (they coordinate ‘Sunday summer walks’, festival transport and annual walking holidays).
We offer bell tent hire for weddings and events in Hampshire and surrounding counties and we always do what we can to accommodate client requests. If you’d like to read more about eco/ethical weddings, read our recent blog post about vegan weddings. Vegan bell tents mean no leather, silk or animal skins! Visit our weddings page or contact us if you’d like a quote for your event.