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As we celebrate the booking of our 15,000th event at 15Hatfields, our general manager Warren Campbell takes a trip down memory lane looking at some of the key milestones that have been achieved since our award‑winning venue first opened its doors in 2008.

Commissioned by the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health (CIEH) to be London's most sustainable venue, from day one we’ve remained totally committed and focused on achieving one goal. A goal of placing sustainability at the heart of every business decision.

And, what a start we had! After ensuring that countless eco-credentials were literally built into the fabric of our building, from the sandstone off-cut walls being painted in breathable clay-based paint, to wood veneers from UK FSC-certified forests and furniture created from compostable and naturally dyed fabrics, we quickly made our mark attracting key events and iconic figures.

Just months after opening, delegates in our fully adaptable series of stylish event spaces, each of which are named after earthly elements, included HRH the Prince of Wales at the launch of the Legal Sustainability Alliance. This quickly followed the NHS launching its Smoke Free London initiative and VisitLondon hosting its Sustainability in Events conference.

To this day, event planners and bookers alike remain fascinated that every architectural element of 15Hatfields has a sustainable story to tell. From our accessible reception desk that’s made from reclaimed medical equipment and recycled plastic packaging, to our window-seat cushion covers crafted from end-of-the-line recycled seatbelts in our iconic colour scheme. Even the coasters, for example, were expertly created from old tyres and the floors feature carpets woven from the hair of Kashmiri goats washed in a river.

Aside from many high-profile events such as the Olympic Environmental Update in 2011 and Agent Provocateur’s first global lingerie showcase in 2014, throughout the last 14 years we’re proud to have helped play a part in setting the sustainability agenda.

We’ve hosted game-changing events such as WRAP’s iconic Carrier Bag Forum in 2009, which transformed the use of plastic and re-useable bags. Other landmark events have included the Low Carbon Economy and the Royal Warrant Holders Association’s Strategy for Sustainability in 2009, as well as RBC’s Wealth Management Sustainability in Finance event in 2013. In 2018 we even championed the #OneLess campaign and 15Hatfields became one of the first London venues to have a free water Refill Station available to the public.

Although we’re working within the constraints of a grade II listed building, we’ve made every effort to create a flexible events space that is as environmentally sustainable as possible. Today, event planners are able to take advantage of over 90% of our hot water being provided by rooftop solar panels, and LED bulbs used throughout the venue use 10 times less energy than halogen bulbs. All electricity is certified to be from 100% renewable sources, and lights in the washroom and kitchen are motion-sensitive to further reduce energy use.

Aside from our various recycling and food waste initiatives and stopping over a million plastic bottles entering landfill, it doesn’t stop there. In the last 18 months, the team has worked tirelessly to innovate and ensure we’re not only sustainably secure but can importantly keep client pricing exactly the same, regardless of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and impacts on the business.

As well as being the first venue to launch a dedicated and very affordable online delegate rate, we’ve also invested in refurbishing our lower ground floor as well as new and intelligent hybrid video conferencing technology, which will be used to great effect by our 15,000th booked event for long-standing client OFFTA as part of their series of 21 board meetings throughout 2022.

Looking to the future, our strategy is focused on working to key pertinent areas of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals – particularly in the areas of Supporting Sustainable Cities and Communities, Responsible Consumption and Production and Climate Action - while also continuing our journey educating and setting a blueprint for other event venues and planners to follow as events don’t need to cost the earth.