Our Green Ways

Environmental sustainability

We are very grateful to be housed in a purpose built, award winning building designed to look after both our patients and the environment.

Roof at Arthur Rank Hospice with solar panels and trees and green field in the background
Arthur Rank Hospice taken behind bushes which frame the front of the Hospice

Our Award Winning Building

 LSI Architects who designed our £10.5 million state-of-the-art Hospice, which opened for the first patients in 2016, were proud winners of the 2017 RICS East Awards ‘Community Benefit’ Award and ‘Project of the Year’, and a 2017 Building Better Healthcare Award for ‘Best Use of BIM’, 

Environmentally friendly design features at our Hospice 

Ever since we moved in to our fabulous building in 2016 we have benefited from the bespoke design features such as solar panels, green roofs, motion sensored lighting and many more features which are listed in the questions and answers section further down this page. 

Our ongoing Green initiatives at our Charity 

The Charity continues to consider the environment and our ‘Green Group’ volunteers champion this further with environmentally friendly initiatives at the Charity. Find out more in the questions and answers section. 

How you can be Green and support us too

There are many ways you can support us to continue to support our environment such as donating and purchasing pre-loved items at one of our five retail outlets around Cambridgeshire.  

When planning our events and fundraising activities we continue to consider our environment. For example our tree recycling scheme held every January has so far collected thousands of trees, many of which were shredded and the mulch has been used in various community spaces around the county. 

Find out more

If you have a passion for the environment or you would like to get involved in the Charity’s Green ways please contact us or email greengroup@arhc.org.uk with your ideas.  

Supporting our environment

How can I support the Charity at the same time as helping the environment?
  • Visit one of our Charity Shops – Recycle and reuse is the best way to reduce landfill. Donate your pre-loved items (now including furniture at our Retail Hub in Sawston) or visit one of our five retail outlets to pick up a bargain. 
  • All our returned/old hosiery from our Lymphoedema patients is sent to rags via our Retail Team which can also raise funds for the Charity. We encourage our Lymphoedema patients to hand in unwanted hosiery to the Hospice or direct to any of our shops or retail hub
  • We also stock a range of environmentally friendly products which have included reusable travels mugs and flasks, recyclable Christmas cards, reusable cloth bags and rucksacks, bamboo lunch boxes and our new seed cards which you can buy from our online shop too!
  • Sign up to our Christmas Tree Recycling Scheme – Each year, in January, at the end of the festive season we can collect your Christmas tree. These are then shredded to be used as mulch either in our community or at the Hospice. Previously, a few trees have been dropped off for the animals at Shepreth Wildlife Park and even a local goat farm! Find out more in the news story from 2021

Our bespoke building has many design features which support our environment including: 

  • Natural Ventilation – Our Hospice is designed to have natural ventilation.
  • Green Roofs – The green roofs at our Hospice absorbs rain, attracts habitat wildlife and decreases stress.
  • Solar Panels – Solar panels were installed to our new Hospice in 2016 to generate some of our electricity.
  • Exterior Cladding– The exterior of the Hospice is clad with Siberian larch, which will naturally grey over time and requires less maintenance than traditional buildings and blends in with the rural landscape.
  • Low Carbon Building Design – The building design at the Hospice follows the energy hierarchy to low-carbon building design and has surpassed local and national targets for efficiency and reductions in CO2 emissions.
  • Minimal Air Leakage Rate- Our Hospice is designed to have a minimal air leakage rate 4.48 = 50% improvement over building regulations.
  • LED Lighting – LED lights are fitted throughout the Hospice building. LED lights are free of all harsh chemicals and they do not emit UV rays. LED lights are also 100% recyclable and can significantly reduce your carbon footprint. With one LED light able to do the work of roughly 25 incandescent light bulbs over its lifetime, LED lights also help save on materials and production.
  • Motion Sensor Lighting – To  ensure efficiency, in many areas, excluding patient areas, the lights at the Hospice at are activated by movement and will automatically turn off if it doesn’t detect movement for a given period of time, therefore reducing electricity bills.
  • Individual Room Thermostats – Throughout the Hospice and in each room, there are thermostats which are a bit like those you’d find on your radiators at home so that each room can be controlled individually depending on the temperature in the room.
  • Low Maintenance Building Design – Our whole Hospice is designed for low maintenance ensuring funds are not wasted unnecessarily and to enable voluntary community groups to use the building where possible.
  • Radiant Panels – At the Hospice, instead of radiators, we have radiant panels which you can see in the ceilings. Energy consumption is 15% lower than traditional radiators.

Our supporters, colleagues, volunteers and the Green Group work hard to continue to consider our environment. Here are some of the Green initiatives at our Charity:  

  • Garden PlantsScotsdales very generously donated many of the plants in the Hospice gardens with some of the plants from the original Hospice on Mill Road being transferred to our new home too.
  • The gardens are designed to provide texture, colour, structure and fragrance throughout the year. Lighting compliments this and provides an uplifting experience and provides an environment which attracts many different types of birds, insects and wildlife (including pheasants, squirrels, ducks, and even a badger!)
  • Our garden at The Alan Hudson Day Treatment Centre has recently been upgraded to include an accessible sensory garden for both patients, colleagues and non humans to enjoy. 
  • Our clinical waste produces power – Our clinical waste (including the bin for our face masks) is sent to Addenbrookes for incineration. This then produces power.
  • Plant stall – Our plant stall outside the Hospice encourages colleagues and visitors to grow their own plants and vegetables at home. Volunteers donate their produce and our supporters are invited to help themselves for a small donation. 
  • Bird Feeders – Bird feeders are placed at Shelford Bottom and at the Alan Hudson Day Treatment Centre to attract many species of birds.
  • Online meetings – Since March 2020 our Living Well Services and many of our departmental teams at the Charity have switched to more online virtual meetings which has reduced travel for both patients and colleagues.
  • Our Conference and Hospitality Team have implemented ways to improve sustainability and reduce carbon footprint (please see question no.6)
  • Our Bistro Team is using eco friendly packaging for our salad boxes, sandwich boxes, cake boxes etc. all labels are fully recyclable too!
  • Buying in bulk – Our Facilities Team, responsible for many of our large purchases, try to buy in bulk as much as possible. This not only reduces extra omissions on the road but also ensures we get the best price, which means more of our funds go to into providing care.
  • Biodegradable Oasis – Our volunteer flower arrangers use biodegradable oasis in the flower bay.
  • Recycle Bins – Recycle bins are placed throughout all our sites across the Charity.
  • Cycle to work scheme – Our cycle to work benefit scheme helps protect the planet at the same time as giving out colleagues the opportunity to improve their mental resilience and support their longer-term wellbeing.

Four 7kW charging points are available at each of the four Park & Ride sites around the city including the near by Babraham Road site, Madingley Road, Milton, and Trumpington.


The Hospice gardens are designed for peace and tranquility and we trust you will be able to find a quiet spot when you need it. However, you may want to combine your visit to the Hospice with a longer walk and so we have put together a list of local
beauty areas you may wish to visit. Please download Green areas and walks situated close to Arthur Rank Hospice Charity here.

Our Venue Hire Team are committed to protecting and reducing our impact on the environment and have adopted the following principles:

  1. A commitment to reducing waste and using environmentally friendly and recycled products were possible.  We have introduced recycling waste bins in the Education and Conference Centre and are seeking to reduce our food waste.
  2. Reducing single use plastic and have introduced glass bottled table water for our venue hire customers.
  3. Reducing water usage and have re-introduced jugs of table water for our venue hire customers. We also encourage visitors to bring water bottles and refill from our water cooler.
  4. We are committed to being energy efficient. Our award-winning building benefits from environmental features including solar panels, green roofs, and motion censored lighting. We provide venue hire hospitality and source local produce where possible for our buffet menus.

The Education and Conference Centre is a Meet Cambridge venue and was featured in an article in Conference News about food sustainability (page 22).  We are also a member of the Cambridge Sustainable Food Network.

If you are interested in supporting our Going Green campaign, please get in touch.  To find out more about hiring our Conference Room for your event contact our Venue Hire Team at venuehire@arhc.org.uk

An orange butterfly on a purple flower

Our Green Group

Our Green Group is run by a group of passionate volunteers whose mission is to educate and celebrate opportunities to maximise our environmental potential by sharing all that’s ‘green’ both at the Charity and in the community with the aim to engage others in greener practices.