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PINES CALYX : an eco-conference center that builds sustainable communities

4. Environment




The Pines Calyx is an award-winning sustainable venue surrounded by 2.5 hectares of gardens and within yards of the cove at St. Margaret’s Bay, near Dover - a uniquely beautiful and tranquil protected environment The venue hosts a wide range of events and acts as the focal point of an emergent Center for Sustainable Living and a hub for sustainable enterprise in Kent, with activities and projects centred around the emerging low carbon economy and include building low carbon communities, sustainable projects and environmental education. For example:

- Rippledown provides environmental education and sustainable land management courses for both children and adults

- Real Health Ventures is a social enterprise committed to effecting positive change in individuals, organisations and communities.

- The Carbon Free Group is a consortium based at the Center integrating all the key technologies, products and services needed to complete the zero carbon jigsaw.

Helionix Designs is an architectural and design group working with natural forms and materials, responsible for leading the design and build of the Pines Calyx, a building that has received more than eight regional, national and international awards.


  •   To establish a Center which provides a wide range of opportunities for people of different ages and backgrounds to experience and learn about sustainable living.
  •   To build sustainable communities and inspire low carbon initiatives.
  •   To ensure blended social, environmental and economic returns in all activities.



A collaborative team work together at the Center adopting a straightforward  ‘show, tell and ‘do’ philosophy in their collective activities :

- ‘Show’ : the Pines Calyx is widely regarded as the UK’s most sustainable modern commercial building, The exemplary standards in the building’s design and construction have been passed on to other sustainable construction projects across the globe (see

- ‘Tell’: the venue hosts an expanding range of training programmes in the field of healthy, sustainable living, with specific programmes guiding private and public sector organisations in integrated corporate social responsibility.

- ‘Do’: healthy sustainability is at the heart of all operations with practices focused around a range of sustainable living themes – a renewable energy programme will yield full zero carbon operations from the entire site during 2011 (with a community wide programme also under way); All fresh water is supplied from the grounds & all waste water is treated naturally on site; Over 40 different species of fruit and vegetables are supplied direct from the grounds to the catering team and a community farm project is also in development; The majority of all wastes are recycled and reused as resources on site; the excellent public transport links (including high speed train service to/from London) are maximised for all visitors.


  •   A venue, and surrounding natural environment, that restores and revives individuals and groups.
  •   Europe’s most sustainable conference venue.


  •   A symbol for sustainability which not only attracts customers, but unites a community.
  •   Lowest Carbon Footprint of any commercial building in the UK.
United Kingdom

Mise à jour le 23/05/2016

Creative Commons Attribution This work by Réseau Alliances – World Forum Lille is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.