Recycling & Plastics Policy

The Big Retreat Wales is committed to being as environmentally sustainable  as possible – it’s part of who we are - we believe in the positivity of nature as a force for good in all our lives and we want to design out waste in our Festival.  

We are set in the beautiful Pembrokeshire Coast National Park - on our walks and trips to the beaches and foreshores, we see first hand what happens to rubbish - a lot washes back up on beaches - bought by tidal current yes - but we all have a responsibility to not create waste in the first place. And when we do - being knowledgeable on the ‘what’ and the ‘how’ of it’s disposal.

We are on a journey with The Big Retreat Wales…. in 2017 we were very mindful of our waste, rubbish  and disposal - but we felt that wasn't good enough. 

Like many of our guests, our eyes were opened by David Attenborough “Blue Planet” series - and we are more determined than ever to eradicate disposable plastics, recycle and re-use and find more ways than ever to leave no impact on our environment. 

For 2018  - we are aware of the problems of Plastics but we don’t have all the answers yet. 

We are challenging ourselves  over the next 5 years of Festival Planning with the goal of designing out rubbish and limiting our carbon footprint by 2022. Plastics are all around us - from cable ties for our marquees, the very fabrics that keep us dry and in some of the most unexpected places. We know that ‘cutting out plastics’ is not realistic at the moment.  But what we can do to eliminate and re-use - we will. 

Environmental Mission

Eliminate single use plastics
Recycle a minimum of 75% of rubbish
Supply fresh tap water to site 
Reuse  - Cups & Water Bottles
Work with traders & Food vendors to support our mission
Education and Awareness
Measure our performances in 2018 

In 2019, we are committed to the following: 

  • Plastics Free and Re-Use Initiatives
    We have a  central feature of a drinks fountain/watering hole on the main Festival site to provide fresh water for all attendees.  No one will sell bottled water on site but encourage people to bring or buy their own re-usable water bottle this year. This saves a minimum of 1800 single use plastic bottles compared to the inaugural Festival of 2017 .
    Our Traders have been asked to not supply single use plastic items for sale  (especially toys  for children)  
    Our Bar is providing a sustainable solution as an alternative to ‘plastic’ pint serving vessels.  We cannot allow glass on the Festival site - but will ask all festival go-ers to bring their  own stainless steel cup/bottle for re-use. There will be no Plastic Straws.
    The Bean Coffee station is offering 20p discounts to those bringing own (non-breakable) mug or re-using their cup from The Bean.
    The Gin Sessions - all samples will be served in compostable cups made from plant starch. If straws are required - these will be paper not plastic. 
  • Waste and Recycling
    We are working with a local waste company TBS Recycling to help us reach our target of 75% recycling rate on all our rubbish this year. Our Food Vendors have all been challenged to use only recyclable materials for service  - paper napkins, biodegradable plates & cutlery . Festival go-ers will be asked to bring their own water bottle, re-usable cup (not glass or breakable)
    Our Coffee Vendor will use compostable cups and all the grounds are recycled as compost in his garden. Customers bringing their own cups  or re-using a cup from The Bean will receive  a 20p discount off next hot drink.
    The Gin Sessions - all samples will be served in compostable cups
  • Education & Awareness
    We need our Festival Go-ers to  help to  design out rubbish -.part of the picture & part of the solution.

    Attend the talk by Surfers Against Sewage and Plastic Free Pembrokeshire to gain information on how you can reduce your impact at the festival. The organisations will also deliver talks to share their ideas to encourage people to be more aware of environmental sustainability.
    Take a look at the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park sculptures - created from litter asked up  on our beautiful shores - ask questions on how you can help
    Join the Plogging  session (Sunday 12 noon)  - a new craze from Scandinavia - Doing a little jogging or walking and picking up plastics as you go!
    Join the Talk with Nicky Middleton-Jones of The Remakery - a brilliant up cycling and re-use project. 

Help Us
Please put your waste in the right bins provided around the site 
Please bring or buy a refillable water bottle and use our taps.
Bring a reusable mug (stainless steel or non-breakable) for your coffee/hot drinks
Give us your ideas on how to make even less impact in 2019 and beyond!