Leadership

Former Cardiff park warden’s house transformed into Sustainable city-centre restaurant, Kindle

Kindle – formerly simply nicknamed ‘the warden’s house’ – is the latest venture from Phill and Deb Lewis, the entrepreneurial couple behind Dusty’s, an award-winning micro-chain of Neapolitan pizzerias in South Wales, and Nook, a cosy yet simply styled neighbourhood bistro, also in Cardiff.

Following a successful Kickstarter campaign which raised an initial £43,000 back in 2019, and with more than £350,000 of further investment from the founders (and a global pandemic in between) the first phase transformation of the run-down, former warden’s cottage in Sophia Gardens is now complete.

Kindle will officially open to the public on 2nd September, and online table bookings are now live at: kindle cardiff.co.uk.

What will be on the menu at Kindle?

Kindle will combine ‘fire food’ with natural wines in a vibrant, informal and unique city centre setting. The restaurant team will work closely with local farmers, gamekeepers and gardeners, to use ethical produce with an emphasis on provenance & sustainability.

Head chef Tom Powell, formerly heading up the kitchen of The Walnut Tree, will lead the Kindle kitchen team, creating seasonal menus which will also make the most of the on-site kitchen garden and greenhouse.

The Sustainable Approach

Bringing together a ground-breaking design and a passion for seasonal ingredient-led cooking, Kindle is the culmination of Phill & Deb’s long-held dream to open a truly sustainable restaurant in their home city, operating on circular economy principles.

Kindle co-owner Phill Lewis said, “Our vision was to create a restaurant which gives back more than it takes from the environment, and to challenge what it really means to create a sustainable hospitality business from scratch.”

To bring this to life, the couple have worked closely with Object Space Place (OSP), a pioneering interior architecture and design company with a focus on hospitality, who came recommended by the Sustainable Restaurant Association

As a result, Kindle’s design has made the most of reusing and repurposing almost every element of the original building, and a high proportion of the materials are reclaimed, including all internal doors, and the flagstones, railways sleepers and scaffold boards used to create the garden and planting beds.

In addition:

  • All timber is either reclaimed or FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) with a Chain of Custody Certificate to prove its origin.
  • Materials with high recycled content have been used, such as wall tiles which are made from 90% recycled glass.
  • Bricks removed from the external walls to create new door openings have been reused in the garden.
  • Energy performance has been improved by adding new sheep wool insulation to the existing walls and roof. The sheep wool also has much lower embodied carbon than oil-based insulation.
  • New taps, showers and low flush toilets are selected from the Water Technology List to ensure efficiency and reduce water use.
  • Energy efficient LED lighting is controlled by movement and daylight sensors to ensure it is only on when needed.
  • The landscaped garden and new planting beds have been improved with peat-free compost.
  • Water based paints and wood stains have been chosen to reduce VOC’s (Volatile Organic Compounds), and a VOC monitor will be installed to make sure levels stay low.
  • Where available, products with an EPD (Environmental Product Declaration) have been chosen. The EPD helps meaningfully compare the environmental performance of one product to another.

The design also incorporates two phases; the first, current iteration revolves around mainly outdoor dining, with the bar area, kitchen and toilets all based within the original building. 

With future extensions and developments in mind, parts of the project have been ‘designed for disassembly’ meaning they can be easily taken apart and reused.

The second phase of the build will take place up to two years later and will involve a glass-fronted extension, reusing every element of the current build in the final iteration.

David Chenery from Object Space Place said “Kindle has been such an exciting project to work on as the whole team were keen to make the design and fit out as sustainable as possible.

This gave us the chance to really stretch our Restorative Design Framework, and to apply the Good Practice Measures of the SKA sustainability assessment method, which will be reviewed at the end of the build by sustainability consultant, Bioregional.

Wherever possible we have made decisions to reduce the carbon footprint and environmental impact of what we are doing, whilst still creating a beautiful restaurant experience. It has really been such a rewarding process.”

To find out more about the warden’s house transformation into Kindle, watch here.

Sustainable Academy Awards


www.sustainableacademy.wales

The Awards recognise the amazing people, projects and initiatives that are contributing towards the seven National Well-being Goals and the five Ways of Working described in the Well-being Future Generations Act.

With collaboration and connection at the heart of the celebration, the annual Awards Ceremony brings together a diverse audience of businesses, charities and third sector organisations.

170 people attended the 2019 Awards Celebration at the Principality Stadium in Cardiff.


In 2019 over 12,000 individual votes were received across the 24 finalists voting profiles.

The Awards take place each year at the end of November, where we announce the winners from each category.

The Awards were developed in partnership by Cynnal Cymru and RenewableUK Cymru. The Awards were held for the first time in 2018, and are a fusion of the Cynnal Cymru Sustain Wales Awards and the Wales Green Energy Awards, organised by RenewableUK Cymru.


Sponsorship Opportunities

There are a number of excellent sponsorship opportunities to sponsor categories and various aspects of the event.  To find out more details about what is available, please get in contact with awards@cynnalcymru.com

Over 400 People Carbon Literate in Wales!

What is The Carbon Literacy Project?

The Carbon Literacy Project offers everyone a day’s worth of Carbon Literacy learning, covering – climate change, carbon footprints, how you can do your bit, and why it’s relevant to you and your audience. The Project divides ‘everyone’ into three distinct audiences – those that live, those that work, and those that study. This allows every citizen to be offered Carbon Literacy learning in a way that has immediate meaning for them.

The Project delivers no training directly but works with a host of people and organisations from all walks of life, that all deliver training that is accredited against the Carbon Literacy Standard. The Project then assesses participant’s and certifies successful candidates with their own uniquely numbered Carbon Literacy certificate.

There is nothing else quite like The Carbon Literacy Project. This was recognised by the United Nations at the UN climate negotiations, COP21, in Paris in 2015, where the Project was awarded TAP100 status, – one of 100 projects worldwide recognised as Transformative Action Programmes, that could materially change the way we deal with climate change.

The Carbon Literacy Project has always been a massive collaborative project. It involves people and organisations from all sectors and walks of life working together and contributing time, materials and funding to advance understanding and action on climate change.

The Project is wholly owned by The Carbon Literacy Trust, a registered charity (No 1156722) established in 2013 to take responsibility for The Project in perpetuity, for the public good.

Where did it all begin?

A cross-sector collaboration developed a carbon reduction plan to make Manchester carbon neutral by 2038. The plan was backed by the local government, the Mayor of Manchester, businesses, universities, and community organisations who quickly recognised that in order for the plan to be successful, they needed a method of learning that enabled every individual in Manchester to take positive action in reducing their emissions. That solution is Carbon Literacy.

Where do we come into it?

We discovered the need for Carbon Literacy in Wales in 2016 after meeting with Claire Raisin, the then Director of Size of Wales, and Dave Coleman, the co-Director of The Carbon Literacy Project.

Exactly a year later, we delivered our first certified Carbon Literacy course for the Sustainability Hub of Public Health Wales and since then we have delivered Carbon Literacy training to over 400 people from all sectors and all parts of Wales.

In the three years that we have been delivering Carbon Literacy training, the project has grown enormously to become an international movement with over 16,000 individuals being trained across ten nations.

As the official partner of the Carbon Literacy Project in Wales, and the only Carbon Literacy training organisation that we are aware of, we’re immensely proud to be part of this movement but we also humbly recognise that the ethos of Carbon Literacy is one of sharing and co-operation.

The main course that we run is called “Carbon Literacy in the Workplace” but we also have a certified course for engineers and are developing ideas to engage more general communities whilst exploring the possibility of developing a course for unions as well.

Our approach is to engage with people largely on a sector basis, training some initial pioneer cohorts and subsequently supporting clients to develop their own courses for delivery in-house via a peer to peer cascade.

We proudly helped National Museum Wales start their journey to develop a dedicated course for the museum sector and connected them with museums in Manchester. 

Our biggest success however is enabling a consortium of 27 social housing providers to design Carbon Literacy training for their own sector which replicates what has been achieved in greater Manchester.

With support from Linc and the Carbon Literacy Project, we trained a pioneer cohort of 63 individuals and supported a course design team. A further 70 colleagues are now undergoing “train the trainer” with Manchester Metropolitan University and in January, the members will start cascading Carbon Literacy training to colleagues.

It’s an amazing achievement for 27 companies to agree to work with each other like this and there have already been reports from the consortium – known as Carbon Literacy Cartrefi Cymru or CLCC – on the impacts the training has had.

For example, Wales and West Housing reported that they are upgrading their fleet to electric vehicles as a direct result of its senior colleagues receiving Carbon Literacy training from us.

While we have been busy in Wales, the core organisation in Manchester has been even busier. It received funding from the UK Government’s BEIS department to develop a range of courses for public sector professional disciplines. It has already launched the Local Authority Toolkit, and Cardiff Council – who received initial training from us – is preparing to use it to train its staff.

Tim Gordon (Head of Communications and External Affairs at Cardiff Council) attended our carbon literacy training in 2019 and responded with: “A thoroughly fascinating and informative course which will open your eyes to the climate change debate – even if you thought you already knew all about it. It will really make you rethink the way we live life today”.

Tim and colleagues are currently receiving and analysing responses to the public consultation on their draft One Planet Cardiff Strategy: the Carbon Literacy training of all staff is an integral part of the One Planet Cardiff proposal. 

Meanwhile, Denbighshire County Council is training their senior management and elected members and we are helping them to develop a Carbon-lite e-learning course.

Newport Council and Monmouthshire Public Service Board are also preparing to initiate Carbon Literacy training with our support.

What’s next for us?

This month we will be running a session for Sustainable Development Co-ordinators Cymru, the network of sustainability professionals in public bodies across Wales. This group will be the first to use our new online learning platform as we convert to a more Covid proof model of learning.

The new website now enables anyone around the world to enrol themselves on any of our courses and undertake a combination of self-directed study with online tutor-led sessions. We will be adding dedicated client-focused courses to the site with a closed enrolment as well as continuing to add open courses that anyone can join.

Our experience with Carbon Literacy has led us to consider the parallels between the climate crisis and the nature crisis and explore whether the same learning approach can be applied to raise people’s awareness of the decline in biodiversity. 

The concept of ‘eco-literacy’ is not new but we think we are the first to apply the principles of Carbon Literacy to the challenge.

With the blessing of the Carbon Literacy project, therefore, we have designed a course that addresses the nature crisis following the Carbon Literacy criteria. The course enables group learning and problem solving with a focus on positive action while not hiding the severity of the threat posed by the erosion of natural systems and the extinction of species worldwide.

Participants will be aided in finding local, collaborative solutions to a global problem and to recognise the value of individual action. We aim to pilot the course in the new year and are pleased to have the support of a wide body of biodiversity professionals and interested groups.

Just like Manchester, Wales has its own carbon reductions plans and targets. With support from us, everyone who lives, works or studies in Wales can now become Carbon Literate and play their part in our national story of revival and renewal.

If you’d like to join our next open Carbon Literacy course please email training@cynnalcymru.com

How Public Health Wales saved 134-tonnes of c02

Public Health Wales has embraced the three pillars of sustainability – environmental, economic and social sustainability and so this was incorporated into the brief produced for furnishing the building. To achieve the retrofit PHW took a new and innovative approach to procuring office equipment, furnishings and flooring using as much reused and remanufactured equipment and products as possible.
As an organisation dedicated to improving public health and well-being, PHW felt that this should be central to activities, including procurement of goods and services, and the refit was identified as an opportunity to demonstrate this approach.

They already had a large number of quality furniture and fittings in their existing offices across Wales and it was felt that these items, with some cleaning, refurbishment and re-design, could be repurposed for use at the new office space in Cardiff Bay instead of being sent to landfill, and could be combined with other new or re-used items in a cohesive and functional style appropriate for the new office space.
It was also important that plans took in to account the sustainability challenges for the public sector in Wales including the Wellbeing of Future Generation Act 2015.

So PHW wanted to ensure the use of existing stock, including those which may need re-designed along with sourcing additional refurbished and pre-owned items. Sourcing of new items would only occur where necessary preferably using recycled content and eco design principles.
PHW took an innovative approach to finding the right supplier. A supplier day was arranged to brief potential suppliers who were given the opportunity to meet representatives from PHW and gain an understanding of the requirements. This new approach meant moving away from traditional procurement scoring where cost is usually given the greatest weighting to one where sustainability had the greater weighting taking up 70% of the scoring requirements.

The tender was awarded to a consortia made up of three companies, Rype, Greenstream and Orangebox as their bid demonstrated the most sustainable approach.

The bulk of the furniture for the new office was either reused/re-manufactured from existing furniture or sourced from elsewhere. Many of these items had they not been reused would have been destined for landfill. In the refit 1,143 individual items were reused, these items were recovered and cleaned, in addition a further 1,270 pieces were re-manufactured (where parts are repaired, reconditioned, or replaced). Desk tops were repaired and chairs and soft furnishings being recovered with new fabrics. Around 2,563 items were used for the office refit overall with 45% of the items being re-used, 49% being re-made and only 6% of the items were brand new but encompassed sustainability credentials.

Orangebox provided approximately 550 remanufactured office chairs for the project as part of their Remade programme. Orangebox Remade involves chairs that are near or past their warranty being returned to Orangebox and then collected by a local social enterprise, who remanufactures the chairs to as good as new condition. Each remanufactured chair saves 32kg of CO2, a 60% reduction in total compared to the new chair. 98% of parts are recyclable; components removed are either kept for reuse or returned to Orangebox’s locally based suppliers for reprocessing into new parts.

A mix of new and reused carpet tiles were used to carpet the offices floor areas. The flooring was designed to be accessible to all users with a number of the walkways designed with bespoke colour contrasts meaning that a greater percentage of carpet tiles needed to be sourced from new stock to meet the design needs. Although the ratio of recycled to new was lower than first anticipated the use of reused tiles, supplied and fitted by Greenstream, made a significant contribution to the project as it aligned closely  with PHW’s overarching aims and objectives of extended community benefits.

In total the project saved around 134 tonnes of C02 the equivalent to traveling around 400,000 miles by car, or taking 41 cars of the road for an entire year.

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