Being green

We believe Green Issues really are fundamental to ensure our children will have a world that is fit to live in.

At Hazelvine, we do not pay lip-service to being green – we are passionate about minimising our impact on the environment and we have clearly stated sustainability objectives.

Our commitment to sustainability is reflected economically through the development of our business and our processes; socially through looking at the needs around us from our employees to our local community; and individually within each development to assess the environmental impact we have and what we can do to reduce them.

Each of our offices recycles paper, plastic, toner cartridges, old computers, and even stamps (collected for the RNLI).

We are proud of the initiatives that we have already introduced – for example to make recycling easier and more effective for residents – and we are keen to be at the forefront of green initiatives, so will always welcome suggestions as to how we can improve further still.

We have recently established the Hazelvine Green Standard which sets out initiatives we want to introduce as widely as possible throughout our portfolio. All our staff are charged with being proactive on these issues on their particular sites and the company will reward the best ideas and the best results

The Hazelvine Green Standard – Our green commitment to our residents

leaficonWe aim to introduce as many of the following initiatives on as many of our sites as possible, and to promote them through newsletters and the website. We also aim to find a ‘champion’ from among the residents to co-ordinate and promote the benefits at site level:


  • Access to recycling bins
  • Water butts – for watering flower beds and washing cars
  • Compost heaps or composters for leaves and cuttings – to be managed by our gardeners
  • Combined shopping deliveries – through our secure message board
  • Car sharing – through our secure message board
  • Secure storage for cycles and promotion of local cycle routes
  • Easy access to local bus and train timetables
  • Free-cycle/Swap Shop area on website message boards
  • Promotion of local car clubs (if appropriate)
  • Travel Plans – and to act as Travel Plan Co-ordinator
  • Identifying areas on our developments where vegetables or herbs can be grown by residents
  • Promotion of local farmers markets and shops supplying local produce
  • Replacing, progressively, blown light bulbs with low energy bulbs
  • Maximising our use of email and communication thorough our website, to reduce the amount of hard-copy mail and postage

Saving Power


On average, we have 169 people in our social network, covering friends, family, the area we live, groups we are members of and even online friends. This means each of us have a great potential to spread the energy saving message and help fight climate change.


Top Ten Power Saving Tips

  • Turn your thermostat down. Reducing your room temperature by 1°C could cut your heating bills by up to 10%. You could save around £40 per year.
  • Is your water too hot? Your cylinder thermostat shouldn?t need to be set higher than 60°C/140°F.
  • Close your curtains at dusk to stop heat escaping through the windows.
  • Don’t leave appliances on standby and remember not to leave appliances on charge unnecessarily.
  • If you’re not filling up the washing machine, tumble dryer or dishwasher, use the half-load or economy programme.
  • Only boil as much water as you need (but remember to cover the elements if you’re using an electric kettle)
  • A dripping hot water tap wastes energy and in one week wastes enough hot water to fill half a bath, so fix leaking taps and make sure they’re fully turned off.
  • Use energy saving light bulbs. Just one can save you £60 over the lifetime of the bulb – as they last up to 10 times longer than ordinary light bulbs.
  • Look into home insulation solutions as the escaping heat from your home will cost more than the insulation its self.
  • Energy Performance Certificate (EPC). The EPC is also a mandatory document if you choose to sell your home. For more information please click here

If you have any questions about this page please contact Hazelvine on 01628 529765 or email

Save Water

leaficonDespite the British Isles having a wet climate, due to our location as an island on the edge of the Atlantic Ocean, water is becoming scarce.

The reasons are manifold: we are one of the most densely populated nations in the world, our areas of population are located in the drier regions (The South, South East and East Anglia) whereas the wetter regions are least populated. Therefore, there is a need for reservoirs, but with projected population growth and land shortage particularly in the South East corner, the need for water conservation is getting more critical each year. Our summers are also becoming hotter and drier (according to the statistics anyway!), which may be a result of long-term climate change.
Here are some useful tips on how to save water: 

  • Use the minimum amount of water required when you boil water in saucepans and kettles; that way, you?ll save energy as well as water.
  • Keep a bottle or jug of water in the fridge instead of running taps until the water runs cold.
  • Half-load programmes on dishwashers and washing machines use more than half the water and energy of a full load. Therefore, wait until you have a full load before switching the machine on.
  • Do not leave the tap running while you brush your teeth, shave or wash your hands, as this can waste up to 5 litres of water per minute.
  • A 5-minute shower uses about a third of the water of a bath. But remember that power showers can use more water than a bath in less than 5 minutes.
  • Old toilet cisterns can use as much as 9 litres of clean water every flush. Reduce this by placing a “save-a-flush” or “hippo” in the cistern.
  • Cotton wool and tissues should be put in a waste bin rather than flushed down the toilet.
  • Dripping taps can waste up to 4 litres of water a day. Replace worn tap washers for a quick and cheap way of saving water.
  • Burst water pipes can cause serious damage as well as waste water. Ensure your water pipes and external taps are lagged in time for the cold winter months.

If you have any questions regarding the above please call Hazelvine on 01628 529765
or email us at



Why recycle?

The United Kingdom produces millions of tonnes of household waste every year. So why should you care about the waste that you (and everyone else) produce every hour of every day of every year? And why is it so important to reduce, reuse and recycle?

Save resources
Most of what we throw away is made from products that are slowly running out or cannot be replaced quickly enough because of the amount we consume.

Many of the materials we throw in landfill tips have a value and can be used again.Many gardeners use peat as a soil improver. This contributes to the destruction of peat bogs, which are non-renewable habitats for wild flowers and animals.
The use of peat is unnecessary because gardeners can make compost from their kitchen and garden waste to use as a soil improver.

In addition to saving our peat bogs, composting green waste saves valuable landfill tip space which is running out.

Save energy
Making new goods out of recycled material saves energy. For example, making new aluminium cans from recycled cans uses 20 times less energy than making cans from the raw material.

Protect the environment
Reducing what we use and recycling materials reduces the need to dig up or mine new raw materials, which often damages the surrounding environment.

Help charities
Many charities and community groups raise money through reusing and recycling. Look around your local high street for charity shops to take your unwanted clothes to or be aware of local groups asking for “jumble”. (Scope, Oxfam and the Salvation Army all have reuse bins in the Borough).

Some Interesting Facts

  • Up to 60% of the rubbish that ends up in the dustbin could be recycled.
  • The unreleased energy contained in the average dustbin each year could power a television for 5,000 hours.
  • The largest lake in the Britain could be filled with rubbish from the UK in 8 months.
  • On average, 16% of the money you spend on a product pays for the packaging, which ultimately ends up as rubbish.
  • As much as 50% of waste in the average dustbin could be composted.
  • Up to 80% of a vehicle can be recycled.
  • 9 out of 10 people would recycle more if it were made easier.


  • 24 million tonnes of aluminium is produced annually, 51,000 tonnes of which ends up as packaging in the UK.
  • If all cans in the UK were recycled, we would need 14 million fewer dustbins.
  • £36,000,000 worth of aluminium is thrown away each year.
  • Aluminium cans can be recycled and ready to use in just 6 weeks.
  • Each UK family uses an average of 500 glass bottles and jars annually.
  • The largest glass furnace produces over 1 million glass bottles and jars per day.
  • Glass is 100% recyclable and can be used again and again.
  • Glass that is thrown away and ends up in landfills will never decompose.


  • Recycled paper produces 73% less air pollution than if it was made from raw materials.
  • 12.5 million tonnes of paper and cardboard are used annually in the UK.
  • The average person in the UK gets through 38kg of newspapers per year.
  • It takes 24 trees to make 1 ton of newspaper.


  • 275,000 tonnes of plastic are used each year in the UK, that?s about 15 million bottles per day.
  • Most families throw away about 40kg of plastic per year, which could otherwise be recycled.
  • The use of plastic in Western Europe is growing about 4% each year.
  • Plastic can take up to 500 years to decompose.

Steps to Successful Home Composting
Composting is Nature’s way of recycling and helps to reduce the amount of waste we put out for the bin men. By composting kitchen and garden waste you can easily improve the quality of your soil and be well on your way to a more beautiful garden. The following easy guide to home composting will provide you with all the information needed to get the best out of your bin.

Step One – Placing Your Bin
it’s best to site your bin on a level, well-drained spot. This allows excess water to drain out and makes it easier for helpful creatures such as worms to get in and get working on breaking down the contents. Placing your bin in a partially sunny spot can help speed up the composting process.

Step Two – Put these in

Like any recipe, your compost relies on the right ingredients to make it work. Good things you can compost include vegetable peelings, fruit waste, teabags, plant prunings and grass cuttings. These are considered “Greens” Greens are quick to rot and they provide important nitrogen and moisture. Other things you can compost include cardboard egg boxes, scrunched up paper and fallen leaves. These are considered “Browns” and are slower to rot. They provide fibre and carbon and also allow important air pockets to form in the mixture. Crushed eggshells can be included to add useful minerals.

Step Three – Keep these out

Certain things should never be placed in your bin. No cooked vegetables, no meat, no dairy products, no diseased plants, and definitely no dog poo or cat litter, or baby’s nappies. Putting these in your bin can encourage unwanted pests and can also create odour. Also avoid composting perennial weeds (such as dandelions and thistle) or weeds with seed heads. Remember that plastics, glass and metals are not suitable for composting and should be recycled separately.

Step Four – Making Good Compost

The key to good compost lies in getting the mix right. You need to keep your Greens and Browns properly balanced. If your compost is too wet, add more Browns. If it?s too dry, add some Greens. Making sure there is enough air in the mixture is also important. Adding scrunched up bits of cardboard is a simple way to create air pockets that will help keep your compost healthy. Air can also be added by mixing the contents. After approximately 6-9 months your finished compost will be ready.

Step Five – Using Your Compost

Finished compost is a dark brown, almost black soil-like layer that you?ll find at the bottom of your bin. It has a spongy texture and is rich in nutrients. Some bins have a small hatch at the bottom that you can remove to get at the finished product, but sometimes it’s even easier to lift the bin or to tip it over to get at your compost. Spreading the finished compost into your flowerbeds greatly improves soil quality by helping it retain moisture and suppressing weeds. Composting is the easiest way to make your garden grow more beautiful.

To start saving energy, resources and more importantly the planet please visit the links below.

If you have any questions regarding the above please call Hazelvine on 01628 529765 or email us at

Cycling Information


Cycling as a mode of transport is cheap, healthy and sustainable. On this page you can find excellent cycling information and routes.

Why should I cycle?
Good For You…

Regular cyclists enjoy a fitness level equal to that of a person ten years younger. (Source: National Forum for Coronary Heart Disease Foundation, Sharp).

Cycling at least twenty miles a week reduces the risk of heart disease to less than half that for non-cyclists who take no other exercise (Source: British Heart Foundation, Morris).

If one third of all short car journeys were made by bike, national heart disease rates would fall by between 5 and 10 percent (Bikes not Fumes, CTC, 1992).

During rush-hour, a bicycle is about twice as fast as a car – good if you hate traffic jams.

Good For Your Wallet…

Bicycles require no road tax, no MOT, no insurance, no licensing, no breakdown recovery services, and above all no fuel bills (unless you count confectionery bars).

A good bicycle needs at most about £50-worth of maintenance a year – less if you do a bit yourself. How much does your car need?

A good bicycle will last for years, if not decades. How long did your previous car last?

A bicycle can be parked just about anywhere, so no more expensive car park bills.

Good For Your World…

Twenty bicycles can be parked in the same space taken up by one car.

To make a bicycle requires only a fraction of the materials and energy needed to make a car.

Bicycles produce absolutely no pollution and they are a lot quieter too. When was the last time you saw a rusting, burnt-out bicycle?
It’s safer if you follow some simple tips:

  • Give way to pedestrians at all times, leaving plenty of room to stop and manoeuvre.
  • Keep to your side of any dividing line and never cut corners.
  • Be careful at bends, junctions and entrances.
  • Always be aware of your surroundings as shoppers will cross your path at many points and vehicles may be travelling towards you.
  • There are loading bays next to the path and goods are moved about.
  • People may be hard of hearing or visually impaired. Never assume that they can hear or see you.
  • Never surprise people “Bike by the Code”.

If you have any questions regarding the above please contact Hazelvine on 01628 529765 or email

Car Sharing


“Lift sharing”, “ride-sharing”, “car-sharing” or “carpooling” -it doesn’t matter what you call it, it boils down to the same thing – two or more people sharing a car to get from A to B rather than driving alone.

The benefits are numerous both for yourself, your family, your community and the environment.

You save money on running costs, you save time looking for parking spaces and you help to save the planet by reducing your carbon footprint.

If everyone who drives on their own to work every day were to catch a lift with someone just once a week, the commuting car journeys would reduce by 20%. And both parties would save money.

Car sharing is becoming increasingly popular as the benefits are acknowledged, and many communities are introducing Car Sharing schemes.

To find out Car Share Schemes in your area please visit the following sites.

If you have any questions regarding the above please contact Hazelvine on 01628 529765

or email

Car Clubs


Car Clubs allow you to drive a car that?s just round the corner without any of the cost and hassle of owning it yourself. Members only pay for the actual journeys they make, saving the planet and money.

For more information on Car Clubs please click on the links below.          •          •
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If you have any questions regarding the above please contact Hazelvine on 01628 529765 or email

Useful Links




To continue your search on Being Green, here are a list of useful websites to visit.

Farmers Markets: 

Growing your own vegetables: 

Miscellaneous Links: 

If you have any questions regarding the above please contact Hazelvine on 01628 529765 or email