Flushed away

We take sustainability and our environmental impact very seriously at Watergate Bay Hotel. It’s part of every decision we make. We are committed to helping to create a viable economy year round throughout Cornwall and are always looking to improve and invest in a sustainable future. Find out more about our sustainability programme.

We have already invested in many environmental and sustainability projects and most recently we have begun to harness water from our stream to flush some of our toilets, rather than using mains water. This reduces our water consumption and overall carbon footprint.

In order to be able to utilise the stream water we have installed two Papa Pumps under The Beach Hut.


How the Papa Pump works

A small amount of stream water is diverted from its usual path straight out to sea. It goes to the pump via sediment tanks, and then through a UV filter to remove any harmful bacteria. The water is then pumped to the toilets in The Beach Hut and Fifteen Cornwall.

Amazingly our toilets use 1.2 million litres of water and 1.2 tonnes of carbon a year, that’s because they get flushed 480 times a day! In carbon terms, this is the equivalent to a 4×4 car trip from London to Glasgow and back. We can now save that amount year on year. We appreciate that every little bit helps.

We have made sure that the system has minimal effect on the environment with the pump and ensured that we do not disturb any migration paths of fish in the stream.


Sustainability Manager, Debbie Morton said, ‘Water security is high on the global sustainability agenda. By 2030 we are expected to be facing a fresh water crisis. As part of our water reduction commitment we have reduced our water from 497 litres per sleeper in 2009 to 335 litres per sleeper in 2012, and that’s even with the addition of our new 25m infinity pool. And now with the help of our stream we’ve gone one step further.’

Future plans

We have already installed a Bio Digester which uses our food waste to create energy which we use to heat our water. Later this year we will be installing a combined heat and power unit and solar thermal panels which will dramatically reduce our energy consumption and carbon footprint. For the future we are considering lots of ideas; investing in electric vehicles, rainwater collection, reusing our waste cooking oil, and will soon be announcing an exciting partnership with a renewable energy supplier. We are always looking into the opportunities renewable energy may hold for us to ensure we have a secure energy supply now and in the future.

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