green holidays made easier
Palace Farm Hostel is on a working family farm a short walk to the village of Doddington in the North Kent Downs, an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Stays can be on a bed and breakfast or self catering basis.
Palace Farm grows wheat, strawberries, Christmas trees, pumpkins and other vegetables for local sale. It also has free range chickens whose eggs with bright orange yolks are available to guests.
The accommodation is in old converted farm buildings. It consists of six fully heated en suite rooms arranged around a landscaped courtyard and sleeping up to 30 guests. One is 2 person, one 4 person, two 5 person, one 6 person and one for 8 persons. They have quality custom made double beds and 3' bunk beds. Duvets, freshly laundered linen and continental breakfast are included.
There is also a drying room, car parking and secure cycle storage.
The hostel is close to a number of historic towns and to the North Kent Marshes boasting excellent wildlife with reserves in easy reach.
On the farm, following a change of farming practices, sprays are seldom used for pest control. Fencing is made from locally coppiced chestnut and when it needs replacing is burned on the "clean burn" log burning stove to help heat the hostel.
At the hostel they have installed mostly low energy lighting, thermostatic radiators, where possible exceeded the insulation requirements, and recently installed solar water heating resulting in large savings on fuel bills.
Guests are encouraged to recycle glass, metal and paper and to make it easy there are recycling bins in the kitchen.
They are researching wind generation, ground source heat pumps, biodiesel and wood chips for heating the hostel and aim to be carbon neutral by 2008.
Palace Farm Hostel was Highly Commended in the first ever Green Tourism award category in the Tourism ExSEllence Awards 2006 for the South East.