Here at Cofton, we are surrounded by such amazing natural habitat and we plan to keep it that way! As well as continuing with our sustainability work, we encourage our guests to get a little closer to nature.

Winners of ‘Silver – Responsible Ethical and Sustainable Tourism, Visit Devon Tourism Awards 2018’ and ‘Bronze – Sustainable Tourism, HE Tourism Awards 2018’.

Biomass Boiler

Using woodchip sourced locally from Forest Fuels, the biomass boiler produces heat and electricity and supplies the entire indoor leisure and dining complex including the pool, hot water for The Orchard toilets, 24 showers, and heat for the outdoor pool during the summer months.

The use of biomass in heating systems is beneficial because it has less impact on the environment than fossil fuels. It has little long term effect on the environment because the carbon in biomass is part of the natural carbon cycle and permanently adds carbon to the environment when burned for fuel.

Our biomass boiler runs constantly, charging a buffer vessel of 5000 litres of hot water storage to cope with demand.

Project facts and stats

  • 3 x Lindner and Sommerauer SL-250T 6R wood chip boiler with 5m agitators.
  • Flue system, thermal store & distribution pipework including all internal connections to existing heating systems, heat exchangers and all aspects of district heating schemes.
  • Runs on wood chips.
  • CO2 output reduced by 750 tonnes.
  • Project price of £593,000.

“Cofton was after a green energy solution for our hot water needs. We worked with Treco to find the best solution, before designing and building the scheme from the beginning to the end. We chose Treco due not only to their locality, but also their vast knowledge demonstrated and their willingness to take our current biomass boiler and encompass it all into one district heating system for the park.” Mellony Kirby, Director.

Find out more about Biomass Boiler project.

Solar Panels

We have a 30KW solar panel system on the pool hall roof fed back into the building for usage locally or into the grid, for better energy sourcing! There is a digital sign in the café showing customers how much power the panels are generating.


Vegware is the UK’s first and only completely compostable food packaging firm. We now use VegWare in our Swan Pub for eat-in and take-away food and drink using their boxes, cutlery and glasses. These all biodegrade in as little as two weeks.

The Vegware compostable packaging is low carbon and made from renewable or recycled materials. It is hailed as the key to zero waste, because ‘you can’t recycle food with plastic in it and you can’t recycle plastic with food in it’.

When ordering a takeaway drink from either our shop or cafe, you’ll notice that we now serve them up in Vegware compostable containers and lids – meaning we’ve eliminated plastic lids and paper cups. Because plastic sucks so much, we’ve replaced all of our straws with the paper variety!

Gold Award

We hold a Gold Award from the David Bellamy Conservation Award Scheme, one of the longest-running green tourism awards in the UK. It challenges businesses to be part of the environmental solution and not part of the problem. We are regularly assessed by the scheme’s local wildlife experts and the approach we take to managing our land, reducing the use of resources, and supporting local communities is all taken into account.

In 2011 Cofton was recognised further with a Conservation Award of Special Distinction for work carried out to make large areas of the park and fishing lakes accessible to wheelchair users.

Honey Bee Friendly Park Award

There’s an abundance of natural habitat for Honey Bees around the park! Check out the Bug and Bee Hotel opposite reception, it turns out it’s not only our 2-legged guests who have luxury accommodation! Can you spot some of the nectar-rich plants that are creating a buzz for the bees?

5-in-5 Habitat Badge

Our wonderful, wildlife-friendly hedges are managed with nature in mind. Keep your eyes peeled around the park for some of the wonderful creepy crawlies and magnificent creatures we have at Cofton!


All kitchen waste is separated at source and food waste is collected by a company called ‘Andigestion’ they take our food waste to produce gas as renewable energy.

Click here to see how it works

On the park we have a mixed recycling scheme… the only things you need to separate is Food waste and glass bottles… we compact the waste on-site and it’s collected and sorted by Devon Contract Waste where is taken to a sorting plant… they boast a ZERO to landfill policy.

Packaging from the shop, kitchen, and bins from around the site is collected and baled on-site using our cardboard compactor. Mill size bales, each weighing half a tonne, go to the paper mill for recycling.

We try to reduce the consumption of plastic carrier bags from the shop by charging for them. The money goes straight to the Wildlife Trust.

Closer to Nature

Not just a holiday park, we also have a Bug Hotel on site!

With no advanced bookings necessary and enjoying a prime position in the heart of the park (just opposite reception), this budget accommodation offers a catch and eat menu! Insect hotels provide a safe environment for nesting and hibernation.

As for our two legged guests, we encourage them to explore the park including our woodland nature trail.


Throughout the year, all money we raised from charging 5p for plastic carrier bags was given to Devon Wildlife Trust. The Devon Wildlife Trust is the only local charity dedicated to protecting wildlife and wild places across Devon.

Local Suppliers

By eating and drinking in any of our 3 dining venues (The Swan Inn pub, Warren Retreat Entertainment Venue, or Amelia’s Pantry Cafe) then you’re supporting local food and beverage suppliers! Devon has a rich heritage of producing the tastiest food so of course we’ve designed our menu around it! With the majority of our food and drink coming from just down the road it means you’re doing your bit for the environment too!

Carrier Bags 

For many years now we have charged 5p per carrier bag in the shop with  all the money made going to Devon Wildlife Trust.  So the total for 2018 was £453.75 and we will continue with these donations into the future.