From Pallets to Pet House: How Behind The Stable Door utilises Sustainability for their Furry Friends

Putting it all together

In a world where recycling and sustainability have risen to prominence, alternative, creative solutions that might once have seemed unthinkable are being widely explored, embraced, and implemented. One such endeavor is the crafting of bespoke pet houses using used pallets — a project that we not only undertook, but exceeded expectations by introducing an element of extra insulation from sheep wool that has no current market value and would have been scrapped. This post dives into the intricacies of this inspiring endeavor, unpacking a potentially replicable model of sustainable construction for other communities.

Introduction: Community Farms and Sustainable Practices

Community farms are vibrant nexuses of human interaction, education, production, and, perhaps most importantly, sustainability. These places often thrive on the ethos of circular economy, where waste is minimized and resources are kept in use as long as possible. Amid the usual scene of crops, livestock, and tools, a novel project was set in motion: a pet house constructed from used pallets, with additional insulation derived from the farm’s sheep wool.

Building with Used Pallets: Recycle, Reuse, Rehome

The foundation for this innovative pet house is old pallets, materials that often go to waste. But here Behind The Stable Door, these discarded items are raw material for creativity and sustainability. The pallet wood’s durability inherently makes it appropriate for outdoor use, and its modularity allows for the easy construction of structures like pet houses.

The construction process involved breaking down the pallets, identifying usable pieces, and designing a robust structure that suits the intended pet occupant. The used pallets are sanded to remove rough edges and splinters, ensuring the safety of the pets, then assembled according to the design. The construction can be adapted to suit a variety of pets – from a compact dog house to a spacious chicken coop, for us we are using it to house our Guinea Pigs

Insulation with Wool: A Warm, Cosy Abode

The touch of genius comes from the provision of extra insulation for these pet houses. Instead of choosing synthetic materials like foam or fiberglass, we used readily available wool from their sheep. Apart from being a waste-free solution, wool is an excellent insulator – the natural crimp of the fibers creates a lot of tiny air pockets, trapping heat effectively.

The wool is stuffed between the panels of the pet house, providing a warm, cosy environment for the pets during colder months. This method also enriches the aesthetic charm of the house, giving it a rustic appeal while maintaining a high level of functionality.

Environmental Impacts and Beyond

By opting to build pet houses from used pallets and wool insulation, we continued to demonstrate commitment to sustainable practices that have positive environmental impacts. It proves the concept of a circular economy by giving a second life to materials that would otherwise have been discarded as waste.

Moreover, this project educates community members and fosters a shared sense of environmental responsibility. It demonstrates that small-scale initiatives can contribute to larger sustainability goals and hopes to inspire similar projects in other communities or farms.

Conclusion: A Model for Sustainable Innovation

Thank you to our impact partners Huhtamaki Lurgan for helping us to continue our recycling goals.

As we look to the future, such initiatives feed the narrative of the small yet transformative changes that continue to reshape our approach to resource management and ecological conservation. Our beloved pets seem simply delighted by their new, well-insulated pet houses. Yet, the resonating impact of these eco-conscious construction is a step towards fostering a global community that values sustainability in all things – big or small.

The Meant to Bee Project

Regency Carpets and Behind the Stable Door: An Eco-Friendly Collaboration for a Bee-Friendly Environment

Regency Carpets, one of the UK’s highly acclaimed carpet manufacturers, has taken a significant step towards environmental conservation in a unique collaboration with the Behind the Stable Door social enterprise. Renowned for their exceptional work in encouraging collaboration and fostering green spaces across communities, Regency Carpets has partnered with Behind The Stable Door to create an eco-space that welcomes and encourages the growth of the bee population at the Regency Carpets manufacturing site in Bangor.

Regency Carpets, traditionally known for its luxury carpets and customer-centric approach, is enlightening the industry with this new commitment to sustainable practices. As an advocate for environmental conservation, they recognize the crucial role that bees play in our ecosystem.

With this commendable initiative, Regency Carpets demonstrates that a business model compatible with environmental sustainability can also contribute to a meaningful cause, creating a tremendous impact beyond the confines of their industry.

Behind the Stable Door is a social enterprise that aids in establishing green spaces in communities. Behind The Stable Door believes that collaboration can domino into positive change, and have been keen to partner and help in transforming communities into biodiverse environments. Their objective aligns naturally with the vision of Regency Carpets, making the partnership beneficial and impactful in many ways.

Why Bees?

Bees play a vital role in our environment. They are the world’s most important pollinator of food crops, with an estimated one-third of the food we consume daily relies on pollination mainly by bees. However, the bee population is under severe threat due to multiple factors such as climate change, habitat loss, disease and exposure to harmful pesticides.

Understanding this, Regency Carpets and Behind the Stable Door have decided to foster an environment within the company’s spaces that favours bee habitation. Their project encourages the growth of plants that bees prefer, providing bees a safe environment to thrive.

This initiative is marked by a deep commitment to promoting biodiversity and preserving nature. To foster bee-friendly spaces, certain steps have been put into place.

  1. Creating Natural Habitats: Under the guidance of Behind the Stable Door, Regency Carpets has started creating green zones on its property, which includes the cultivation of a variety of flora that attract bees and provide them with an ideal environment for their community’s growth.
  2. Employee Engagement: Cultivating green spaces is not an isolated activity. Regency Carpet and Behind The Stable Door employees are encouraged to join in, bolstering a sense of joint involvement and responsibility.
  3. Public Awareness: The collaboration also focuses on promoting awareness by providing essential information about the importance of bees and their role in the ecosystem.
  4. Extension of the Project: The initiative taken by these two entities is not confined to just their premises. They encourage other communities and organisations to join in creating a sustainable and bee-friendly environment.

The results of this partnership are quite significant beyond environmental benefits. It represents the power of collaboration and the magic that can be woven when industries step beyond their traditional roles. It’s a show of unity and commitment to the environment, to sustainability and the greater good.

Regency Carpets and Behind the Stable Door have proven that when enterprise and social initiative combine, the results can bee extraordinary ? ? ❤️!

Social & Environmental Impact

Do we Recycle, Reuse, or Upcycle ??

The facts behind climate change can often be misconstrued

So how can we keep from becoming confused?

Upcycled, Recycled, Reused

All three stop precious natural resources from being over abused

A simple explanation can be a good place to start

Without sending our neurosis off the chart

To upcycle we can turn the shabby into sheek

To recycle we can give an old product a totally new physique

With reuse we can keep an item until its called an antique

Most important is to personalise your own upcycling, recycling, reusing technique

As any or all will stop the damage to nature from becoming more bleak.

We recycle unused egg cartons that have factory defaults into animal bedding Behind The Stable Door –“The act of taking something no longer in use and giving it a second life and new function. In doing so, the finished product often becomes more practical, valuable and beautiful than what it previously was.”

All of us have wonderful skills to do this, like the lady in London who resuses discarded crisp packets to make blankets for the homeless, or the fashionable and popular art of taking old pieces of furniture and giving them a retro look and a new lease of life.

Our recycling on the farm uses egg cartons that are deemed to have factory defects and are not acceptable to the end supplier. These egg cartons are collected unused from the factory that makes them,  and brought to our farm were we start the process of upcycling or recycling them, or repurposing them, giving them a new life.

Our ecoshred bed is the result of them heading through a shredding machine, getting the dust extracted and being put into bags ready for use as animal bedding.

They make super cosy, colourful, absorbent animal bedding and are also suitable to make great compost when they have been discarded after use. So we’ve twice reused them and saved a very reusable product from landfill and being homeless.

However, our future recycling dream relies on the generosity of others helping us out by understanding our dream to recycle and repurpose and support this by purchasing our bedding. That’s what keeps the wheels turning. Our recycling relies on our practical, valuable and beautiful bedding finding a new home. I hope you will check Ecoshred Bed out and join us on our recycling journey, it will be awesome if you can!