Action Areas: Carbon emissions/ Greater fairness/ Health & wellbeing
The Green Network was born from a desire by local businesses to work together to collaborate and share information in order to make Ards and North Down a sustainable destination.
In 2019, the Council offered 25 local businesses a green health check. This highlighted what each business was doing well but also what could be improved in terms of being more sustainable. Businesses were also given a PDF of their green story. For the first time many of the businesses used this information to talk about how they were striving to be sustainable and what that would mean for visitors.
In 2020 several of the businesses approached the Council to express interest in doing more and it was decided to work towards creating a Green Network. An 'Expression of Interest' was promoted publicly and potential members had to show how they met particular sustainable criteria to be considered for membership.
When the group was formed it was very much led by the members and what they wanted to achieve for their collective businesses. Their goal is to position themselves at the forefront of green and sustainable practices leading to the achievement of a 'green destination status'. This will be secured via collaboration to create sustainable experiences, the sharing of best practice and a marketing plan to explain the green destination.
Evaluation of the success of this project will be carried out in March 2022 once the network has been established.
Watch our 'We're Ready to Welcome You' video for a flavour of the tourism opportunties in the Borough.