UNESCO Biosphere Isle of Man

Who is involved?

Our list of project partners is growing rapidly and encompasses businesses, schools, charities and community groups across the Island.

Business:

AFD Group
AFD Group
http://www.mvic.im

AFD Software Ltd specialises in helping businesses with address management software.

AFD provides employment with minimal commute-to-work distances, making it realistic for staff to walk and cycle.

AFD Group purchased the near-derelict Island Film Studios site in 2014 and developed it as the Mountain View Innovation Centre – its headquarters and a thriving community hub.

It has planted 4,000 trees, installed an environmentally friendly sewage and hot water systems, is upgrading insulation and has installed LED lighting controlled by motion sensors.

Staff and other site users are provided with reusable drinking bottles that can be filled from water points installed throughout the site in a bid to reduce single use plastic bottles.

Recycling units make it easy for employees and community members to sort their waste, which is then recycled.

As employee numbers grow and there is more footfall to site with the introduction of a membership initiative, AFD has increased shower facilities to support those who prefer to commute on foot or by bicycle. Bicycle storage is available.

A solar PV array on the roof means Mountain View is the largest solar electricity generator on the Isle of Man.

The company is launching a staff electric vehicle scheme whereby staff can make journeys using some of the surplus electricity generated on-site.

The AFD Group endeavours to ‘buy local’ even if this means paying a bit extra.
Staff and other users of the Centre have free use of allotment beds to grow fruit and vegetables.

AFD also recognised that its landscaped gardens, with an abundance of flowering trees, plants and meadow, offered an ideal habitat and home for honey bees and two colonies have been established. Local beekeeping experts have delivered educational sessions at the Centre, in recognition of bees' importance to a healthy environment and economy.

The AFD Group is founded on objectives which recognise its role in society.

The company embraces all aspects of what makes the Isle of Man a special place to live and extends this beyond the site walls.

The group’s annual charity event sees it generously support a wide range of charities nominated by directors and staff. In 2017, more than 60 charities received more than £1,250,000.

AFD sponsors and hosts the One World Centre’s Charity Challenge, which encourages local young people to be global citizens. Its staff donate their time and expertise to help run the event.

The company provides its facilities free of charge or at a subsidised rate for community groups and charities.

AFD is a proud supporter of the revived Ramsey Carnival, pledging sponsorship until 2020.

It has purchased a 4x4 vehicle for Beach Buddies and taken part in the charity’s events.

AFD Group’s businesses include the children’s TV Series Friends and Heroes, which was the first ever to be dubbed in Manx. As well as making this available internationally, AFD donated copies to Bunscoill Ghaelgagh.

Further promoting Manx culture, staff are encouraged to answer the phone in Manx and site signage is bi-lingual where practical.

A sculpture garden is being developed around the Mountain View estate.

Troutlodge
Glen Wyllin Trout Farm Ltd
http://www.Hendrix-genetics.com

Glen Wyllin Trout Farm Ltd is one of the Island’s leading exporters, shipping rainbow trout eggs to 50 countries.

In trading globally, it promotes the Isle of Man’s clean, naturally-fed water, its high animal health regulations and its status as free of key fish diseases.

Through use of the UNESCO Biosphere logo on its products, it will, similarly, tell customers throughout the world about the Island’s unique ‘whole nation’ Biosphere status.

The company also supplies rainbow trout to six local reservoirs, ensuring the Island offers plentiful opportunities to visiting and local anglers.

Glen Wyllin Trout Farm Ltd respects its location on the coast at Kirk Michael and has biodiversity, waste and environmental policies that ensure its surroundings, wildlife and nature are unaffected by its operations.

It recirculates water to minimise use. It is investing in rebuilding a fallen weir that, once back in place, will give it greater control over supplying both the farm and the adjacent river, ensuring that waterways and surrounding aquaculture remain healthy.

It is endeavouring to use more efficient low energy technology to reduce its energy consumption.

It leases a third of its land to local commissioners as a goodwill gesture and this is used by local and visiting BMX enthusiasts, promoting enjoyment of the Island’s countryside.

Paragon Recruitment Ltd
Paragon Recruitment Ltd
https://www.paragon.co.im

Paragon Recruitment Ltd specialises in the resourcing of permanent, temporary and contract workers for the Isle of Man.

It promotes to off-Island candidates the benefits of living and working in the Isle of Man, including the Island’s unique Biosphere status.

Paragon manages the Isle of Man Jobs social media initiative that is a platform for recruiting and supporting volunteers for community and social initiatives and has 12,000 members.

It has an eco-policy covering waste minimisation and removal of single-use plastics and it promotes this to business partners and suppliers.

It has replaced employees’ parking spaces with a monetary incentive to cover more environmentally friendly ways of getting to work.

Paragon also runs an ideas and initiatives scheme so its employees can suggest changes that have a positive effect on the environment. It facilitates its team’s involvement in community activities and support.

Castletown Golf Links
Castletown Golf Links
https://www.castletowngolflinks.com

Castletown Golf Links is situated on the Langness Peninsula at the South-Eastern tip of the Isle of Man.

The Golf Links were created in 1892 by Old Tom Morris of St. Andrews, Scotland, widely known as the founding father of the way golf is played today. The layout of holes encompasses the narrow sand spur linking the main island to Langness Peninsula and the rugged clifftop coastline creating a great variety of holes and challenges for the golfer.

Advancement in technology allows us to spray low impact wetting agents onto the maintained parts of the course permitting more effective uptake of moisture into the managed root zone and therefore less requirement on other chemical inputs and irrigation systems. Working around natural rainfall plus careful selection (and nurturing) of grasses to work with our natural ecosystem form the foundation of our greenkeeping maintenance processes.

Furthermore, the team focus on achieving a balance between regularly maintained areas, using low impact treatments, and rugged surrounding areas where nature is allowed to take its course with minimal disturbance. This environment mix, with the ever-present sea and views as far as the eye can see as a back drop, form a spectacular environment in which to enjoy golf. Castletown Golf Links recently being recognised as the 8th most spectacular golf course in the British Isles by National Club Golfer magazine.

We regularly interact with the Department of Environment, Forestry & Agriculture (DEFA) to discuss activity on the golf course and how best we can promote a productive environment for local bird, animal, and plant life. In 2015 we embarked on a project to re-route our classic 18th hole to better take advantage of the surrounding topography plus views of the ancient ruins on St. Michael’s Isle. The work, carried out in consultation with DEFA and Manx National Heritage was completed by creating a newly protected offset site further along the coastline. The vegetation on this site was determined as having an excellent basis to help promote an increased population of the Lesser Mottled Grasshopper, Langness being the only site in the British Isles where this species remains in situ. A local rare-breed sheep farmer has become part of the project with a dual benefit of providing a great landscape for his sheep to graze in the winter months whilst keeping the vegetation lower for the grasshoppers.

In 2018 we have initiated a new project to help engage both our local community and visitors to Langness in better understanding the great history and vast array of wildlife present with the goal of encouraging more people to enjoy and respect the area. As part of this we are working with Manx Bird Life to establish a bird hide that can be used for educational and tourism activities whilst removing incentive for avid watchers and dog walkers to get too close to nesting birds. Additionally plans are being put in place to clean the historic “Smelt” building close to the Derbyhaven Bay and 6th hole of the golf course to allow a picnic site for families and space to inform visitors about the many historic activities understood to have taken place around this area.

Through our marketing activities, we greatly look forward to promoting our UNESCO Biosphere status and Langness Peninsula.

Knockaloe Beg Farm
Knockaloe Beg Farm
https://knockaloebegfarm.com

Knockaloe Beg Farm offers bed and breakfast, self-catering, hostel/bunk accommodation and glamping in the west of the Island to visitors and local people enjoying staycations.

Fiona and John Anderson run the business with great concern for the environment.

Over the past decade, they have rebuilt the farm using old materials where possible, breathing life back into their area of the Island.

The Andersons promote local produce and provenance to visitors, through the food served to bed and breakfasts guests and through education.

They reduce waste as far as possible and have large bins for recycling waste that is produced.

The business achieved a Gold Green Tourism Award for five years and won an Isle of Man Energy Award in 2015.

Knockaloe Beg Farm is heavily involved in community life, including the development of the old Patrick Schoolrooms, which is bringing to life the history of the Knockaloe internment camp.

It offers ‘open farm’, birthday and school visits, teaches children about how they can positively influence the environment and offers work placements to local students, too.

Globally, it sponsors children in developing countries and has twinned its 20+ toilets in a scheme to promote water sustainability.

Manx Gas
Manx Gas Limited
http://www.manxgas.com/

Manx Gas serves gas, the cleanest of fossil fuels, to the Isle of Man.

The company supplies customers with energy efficient appliances and supplies combined heat and power units.

It is reducing the need to dig on most mains replacement jobs, lessening their environmental impact.

It reduces employees’ travel through use of video conferencing, replaces company vehicles with more efficient models and recycles waste metals and batteries.

Confidential waste is recycled but Manx Gas has also now introduced recycling bins and boxes into its offices for ordinary waste.

Manx Gas displays the Biosphere Pledge on its staff noticeboard and showcases the Island’s beauty through displays of photos, taken by local photographers, in its reception.

The company is a firm part of the Island’s community. It donates a working day a year for staff to carry out community projects and supports staff taking part in charitable events out of work, through donations.

Staff recently took part in the Year of Our Island/Beach Buddies all-Island beach clean and has since provided Beach Buddies with a large bin for use by the charity at a beach or glen.

The company also holds dress-down days to benefit local charities and supports volunteers from the TT and MGP Marshals’ Association by providing portable stoves and canisters for them to use when on duty.

Staff have recently taken part in the Viking Longboat Races and will this year also compete in the Cancer Research Relay for Life at the NSC.

Wild Mann Tours
Wild Mann Tours
http://www.wildmanntours.co.uk

Wild Mann Tours is a Blue Badge tour guide showing off the Isle of Man’s natural beauty and cultural heritage to visitors – and promoting the Island as a special place to live, work and visit.

It assists large and small groups, including cruise ship passengers, to see the best of the Isle of Man.

It encourages visitors to explore the Island by foot, bicycle and public transport, to respect the environment and, on walks, to collect any litter they find and dispose of it responsibly.

In addition to catering for visitors, it offers guided walks to local groups and participates in Manx National Heritage open days.

The Island’s Biosphere status is a real selling point in attracting visitors and a key talking point with them when they arrive, the organisation says.

Baie Mooar Guesthouse
Baie Mooar Guesthouse
http://www.baiemooar.com/

Baie Mooar Guesthouse is a scenic bed and breakfast in Ramsey, Isle of Man.

In a picturesque setting, this bed and breakfast takes good care of its guests, its property and its surrounding environment.

During your stay, it will be comforting to know that Baie Mooar reduces its plastic waste where possible. It uses re-fillable glass bottles of tap water for rooms and all complimentary toiletries are in re-fillable and reusable plastic.

Your breakfast is as fresh as the sea air, with ingredients locally sourced, where possible, to support local businesses and the Island's economy. Baie Mooar Guesthouse also run a supper club, showcasing the best of the Manx produce.

All cleaning products are eco-friendly and the lights are energy saving, too, with sensor lighting in hallways to reduce energy consumption.

Using local tradesmen, Baie Mooar Guesthouse has refurbished its entire property, repairing instead of removing and renewing.

Baie Mooar has strong links with tourism attractions and other B&Bs, as well as supporting local events and promoting the Isle of Man in its marketing.

Run by proud locals, this B&B does more than cater to you in the morning and night, helping guests plan their stay with advice on trips and where to go/ what to do, to ensure their guests have the best possible stay.

During Cylclefest, discounted rates were given to those staying, in support of the event, and a Manx Litfest writers' retreat was held at Baie Mooar, with the discounted rates included.

As a partner, Baie Mooar will promote UNESCO Biosphere Isle of Man through social media, guest information packs and by encouraging other accommodation providers to get involved.

Robinson's
Robinson's
https://www.robinsons.im/

Robinson’s fresh fruit, vegetable, fish and flower wholesaler and retailer is one of the Isle of Man’s longest established and best known family businesses.

Established on a market stall 131 years ago, Robinson’s has a 50,000 square foot distribution centre and supplies its own and other shops, the hospitality trade, leisure providers, businesses, care establishments and schools with more than 6,000 products.

Robinson’s contributes massively the Island’s economy both as a leading employer and purchaser from/distributor for local farms, growers and manufacturers.

Its Isle of Man Hampers and Paddy’s Fish branches promote Isle of Man food, drink and seafood on and off the Island. Its fish smokehouse was last year the winner of two prestigious Great Taste Awards from the Guild of Fine Food.

Robinson’s promotes healthy eating and wellbeing and works with education to run events for, and provides free samples to, all the Island’s schools. To mark its 130th anniversary last year, it launched Fruit for Schools and Fruit for Offices initiatives.

It sponsors and exhibits at the Isle of Man Food & Drink Festival, the biggest annual showcase of local produce, and generously sponsors the Chef of the Year and Student Chef of the Year competitions that culminate at this festival. Both contests promote local food and the economy.

Investment in technology and integrated use of social media also promote the Isle of Man and its great range of produce to wide audiences.

Dry Planet Ltd
Dry Planet Ltd
http://www.dry-planet.co.uk

Dry Planet Ltd is a manufacturing and trading company of water efficiency products.

Dry Planet helps save water by introducing water efficiency measures in the home or the workplace.

Their award winning Save-a-Flush product has been reducing water consumption for the past 10 years.
Dry Planet’s home is the Isle of Man and they trade across the UK, primarily working with water companies who buy self branded Save-a-flush and in Africa, Australia, USA, Europe, the Middle East & the Caribbean. Their product can be personalised for companies to promote their sustainability goals and to educate.

The business has supplied Manx Utilities and is aiming to do more locally to promote the importance of water efficiency.

Give Me Tap is another partnership of theirs which reduces the need for single use plastic water bottles through purchasing their branded and reusable drinking bottles.

Give Me Tap supplies free water refills in cafes and public buildings which join Give Me Tap. The money from purchasing your water bottle goes towards building water pumps for water poor regions in Africa.

Dry Planet supplies schools across the UK with their Hippo branded product to aide Eco projects and locally the Hippo water saver has been used by students in Queen Elizabeth II School. The Hippo brand is known globally and saves water in the workplace and in homes.

In the commercial property they own in Douglas, they have installed LED lighting and eradicated the use of paper hand towels in WCs. Dry Planets next aim is to reduce single use plastic and recycle all appropriate waste at the building.

Dry Planet supports the local community, as supporters of Beach Buddies they have sponsored the purchase of one of the large refuse bins to help keep our beaches plastic free.

Dry Planet can be found at local events such as agricultural shows where they promote their business and they support local cultural and charitable events.

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Sign up to the UNESCO Biosphere ISLE OF MAN pledge

UNESCO Biosphere Isle of Man is open to everyone. You are welcome to be involved, providing you support the principles outlined in The Biosphere Isle of Man Pledge. This is the pledge that our partners have signed up to. Encapsulating the aims of the project, this is the Pledge that all our partners sign up to.

If you are interested in being involved as a business, you’ll find more information about the benefits of being a partner and how it all works in the Project Partners Guidelines for Businesses and also for Schools, Community Groups and Charities.

To apply to become a Partner and Supporter of UBIOM, please fill in this application form, and help us to tell others what you are so proud of, and keep us updated about how you will get even better.

Download the UNESCO Biosphere Isle of Man Pledge