Sustainability and Conservation

Sheepdrove Organic Farm, two thousand acres of green pastures, wildflower meadows, ancient woodland and fields of heritage grains on chalk downland, is a pioneer of sustainable, regenerative and organic farming. Juliet and Peter Kindersley, founders of innovative information publisher DK, converted the farm to organic over a quarter of a century ago, their interest driven by a desire to set up a model for sustainable agriculture and a passionate concern for animal welfare. They remain committed to environmental sustainability and biodiversity conservation.

Our award-winning building ensures our carbon footprint is kept to a minimum. Here’s how…

Aerial view of Sheepdrove Conference Centre

The building sits on the ‘footprint’ of the previous farm office to minimise the physical demands on land

Materials from the demolition of the redundant buildings were re-used

Chalk from the excavations was re-used to create the “rammed earth” walls

New timber products are from responsibly managed and renewable sources

No PVC was used in the venue, including electrical wiring

Toilet cubicle partitions are made from recycled toothpaste tubes and wash basin panels from recycled CDs

Turbine at Sheepdrove

Heating delivered by a ground source heat pump powered by 100% renewable energy


High levels of insulation reduce heating requirement


Ground source heating powered by on site solar panels that feed electricity into the building with all excess exported to the grid


Abundant natural daylight reduces need for electricity


Energy-efficient long-lasting LED lights throughout emit less heat and use up to 85 % less energy


Natural air ventilation system provides cooling negating need for energy intensive air conditioning


Total annual electricity exported by renewable energy sources (minus storage losses) from 4 solar sites and 2 wind turbines exceeds annual energy consumption

Read our Zero Carbon in Operation Review

Reed bed system at Sheepdrove Organic Farm

Water is drawn from a 300ft deep well located on site

Water is recycled by a reedbed system; when clean, it returns to the water table

Rainwater captured by the roof goes into the reedbed system offsetting water demands

Sheedrove daisy meadow

Awards for Sheepdrove include

Civic Trust Special Award. Sustainability Award. Level of Award. Special Award. Region. South East. 2005

First place in Green Award category of the Event Awards 2008

RSPB Telegraph Nature of Farming Award 2012

Building Biodiversity Sustainable Wedding Award 2023

Net Zero Leader Sustainable Wedding Award 2022

Green Tourism Gold Award 2023

Green Meetings Gold Award 2023

Reedbed System

The reedbed system at Sheepdrove was installed in spring 2002. Reedbeds treatment systems, sometimes called treatment wetlands, are zero energy input, low-tech, high efficiency wastewater treatment systems that use growing wetland plants to clean waste water sufficiently to discharge back into the environment.

sustainable weddings award
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