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6th March 2019
We like to make sure that we do everything possible to improve the lives of anyone who has contact with Ellingham Hall.
And while that’s a very clear foundation within our core values for visitors, guests, wedding couples and corporate clients, it also extends to the wider community in which we are situated.
Being well known within the county of Northumberland, we believe it is important that as part of our corporate governance we are instrumental in protecting and improving the beautiful, historic rural community we are proud to be part of.
There are several key issues in which we have taken a key role in helping our neighbourhood.
When Ellingham Hall’s owners bought the Hall, the village’s sewerage system was an outdated septic tank that overflowed and flushed sewage down the stream within the Hall’s grounds. This not only affected villagers, but it also had an adverse effect on wildlife.
A meeting was arranged by our owner Aidan Ruff with local residents, water and river authorities, council representatives and environmental health departments to drive forward an urgent update of the system.
After two hours, a plan was made, and it took only 12 months to find the funding. As a result, the new system not only produces clean water that meets current standards, but wildlife has now returned to the stream and grounds.
As well as looking after the water for our village, the work we carried out has enabled us to offer fresh water direct from the local spring which was part of the old Ellingham Estate and now run by Northumbrian Water to be bottled for visitors to enjoy. Being a sustainable source, it also means we do not have to rely on buying in bottled water, which means a reduction in plastics and vehicles coming into the village as well as their emissions.
Guests are also treated to tasting our own homegrown herbs and fruit when they come to Ellingham Hall. We recently introduced a herb garden as part of plans to grow our own produce, which is currently being upgraded. As well as garlic, rosemary, mint and thyme, we also grow our own rhubarb and have many fruit trees, including apple, plum and pear. All of this produce is used by our Head Chef for his culinary creations and helps reduce our need to transport ingredients, which are also fresher so better tasting!
Ellingham Hall also provides its central heating and hot water through a biomass system. Although this was a considerable investment, we believe this is better for our local and the wider environment because it is a low-carbon option and reduces our emissions. We also use fuel from local suppliers saving on carbon output.
We also have a conservation project that includes continual investment in the grounds to preserve nature and wildlife. In particular, our tree planting programme will be further extended into our next phase of development at our sister venue Lemmington Hall.
We have a recycling point for cardboard, glass and plastics and we’ve banned plastic straw use.
Low energy lighting is also used throughout the entire site and has been since CFL and then LED bulbs became available.
High Speed Broadband
As a rural business, we enjoy many benefits, but one area that is an issue for any business or resident within the UK’s countryside is connectivity. Whilst we were able to access the Internet, it was painfully slow via six aged lines.
As the village’s cables run through our grounds, our owners Aidan and Helen negotiated with BT/Openreach to install a high-speed cabinet within the estate to allow Open Reach and Alncom to install two high speed broadband lines. We also provided the power and helped with the legal work to speed up the process, which has allowed villagers to enjoy fast broadband.
The second phase of this work was the installation of a roof antenna to allow local farms and anyone in nearby villages of up to 5 miles away to access high speed broadband.
As a ‘thank you’ for the ease in which the upgrade was carried out, Open Reach has offered to put in high speed lines to our new sister venue, Lemmington Hall.
See recent press article about the work via link below https://www.northumberlandgazette.co.uk/news/northumberland-firm-delivers-broadband-solutions-1-9413359
Rural Northumberland is a beautiful, unspoiled county, but road connections are now very outdated and in need of modernisation. Having better connectivity will not only make it easier to travel, but opens the county to further inward investment, which will create more jobs.
Our owner, Aidan, has worked closely with local MP Anne-Marie Trevelyan and a campaign to dual the A1 north of Morpeth to Ellingham. Consultations are now taking place after the money for the project was allocated by the Department of Transport. There is a continuing campaign to dual the A1 right to the Scottish Border, and this will help broaden the appeal of venues such as Ellingham to a wider customer base, which will protect and create jobs as well as improve potential future investment.
The work we have carried out so far shows that our business focus is far wider than providing a venue for guests, but we are part of our community. As well as providing employment in a rural area, we are also keen to protect the interests of our community and the environment both now and in the future.
“From first viewing Ellingham Hall on a virtual tour during lockdown to our wedding weekend the whole planning process was made so easy. Special thanks to Wendy for being so responsive to my many emails back and forth! Thank you to Charlotte and Charlie and the rest of the Ellingham Hall team who worked hard behind the scenes to make everything run seamlessly the whole weekend! We knew as soon as we visited Ellingham Hall it was the wedding venue of our dreams and even better that it could be exclusively ours for us to enjoy for the full weekend! Our guests absolutely loved it and we were all made to feel at home there for the entire time. The wedding breakfast food also got fantastic reviews from our guests with many saying it was the best wedding food they had ever had! We had the most amazing weekend at Ellingham Hall and wish we could relive it all again.”
Michelle & Andrew Farman, 1st October 2022
“We have hosted a number of corporate events and the staff have always been superb in supporting us. Our guests are always delighted when they walk through the doors and get to spend a day in the beautiful surroundings. “
DIGITAL SPARKLES – NICOLA LITTLE (CHIEF SPARKLER & DIRECTOR)
“I booked a lunch party at Ellingham Hall for a very discerning group comprising of generous supporters of a local charity. We were 27 people and we enjoyed a Champagne reception before a delicious three course lunch. Wendy and her team could not do enough for us, our every request was granted. Dietary requirements were very efficiently and creatively dealt with and the result was a most enjoyable event at a price I was very satisfied with. I would definitely use Ellingham Hall again for a function like this.”
“I have hosted seminars for over 30 years, all over the country at various well-known venues. At Ellingham Hall you remember everything, from the beautiful quirky venue which has retained its historic features, the friendly staff, great service and the delicious food and amazing coffee! The meeting room had good light and was the perfect size for our event. It was lovely to have use of the comfortable reception rooms too for breaks and lunch. I was very impressed with the extra spaces such as the basement games room and rooftop networking terrace. It is a hidden jewel in the North-East and I am planning to return soon for a private family event”
Amanda Chadwick, Senior Speaker/Presenter, Croner
“The hall catered for everything we needed, from the luxury entrance rooms, to the grounds outside, which we used to talk with clients in more detail afterwards. It was exactly what we wanted to allow us to host a presentation of this size. Guests were welcomed with a selection of drinks and canapés in the entrance hall and then again on departure. The seminar itself took place in the Chapel, while the dining room and drawing room provided the perfect spaces clients to relax.
Michael Sage, Director, Sage Wealth Management
“The venue exceeded our expectations. Not only did it offer uniqueness, but exclusivity was a key factor in booking. The main Hall offered lots of space for us to work and we found the delegate rates very competitive. The venue comes highly recommended. “
Lisa Davidson, HR Director – Connect Health