[Sophie up on the roof., with her assistant Luke Barnes, the hotel’s F&B manager.]
While the green roofs of the Snow Hill estate have been turning grey, one city hotel is proudly ensuring its upper covering will fly the flag for that colour and help earn it some ‘green’ credentials.
Apex City of Bath Hotel is becoming more biodiverse thanks to the help of University of Bath student – and hotel staff member – Sophie Scott.
The Environmental Science student, who is also a part-time Food & Beverage Assistant at the city centre hotel, is helping the property launch the Apex City of Bath Biodiversity Green Roof Project.
The study will improve the already green roof on top of the purpose-built hotel is part of Sophie’s Dissertation which is titled, ‘Investigation into the environmental factors influencing rural and urban green roof spaces and the resulting impacts upon biodiversity’, and is set to increase green space, and plant life around the city centre, working in tandem with a similar project taking place at the University of Bath.
Apex City of Bath Hotel, located on James Street West, is a four-star hotel with the largest conference facilities in the city. Due to its central location and roof design, it is the perfect place for fresh plants to grow and thrive.
Sophie’s work hope to give a varying range of different outcomes which will help to determine the concentration of vital plant nutrients, Nitrate, Phosphate and Potassium (NPK) indicating how suitable the current substrate is for plant growth, and how hardy the plant species will need to be in order to develop on the rooftop.
The hotel has an internal Green Committee in place with the aim of becoming more sustainable, a group which Sophie is also part of, which is currently working towards Green Tourism Accreditation. It is hoped that the Green Roof Project will help Apex City of Bath Hotel achieve this goal.
Sophie said: “Working on the green roof project as part of my dissertation has been a unique and valuable experience for me, and has enabled me to have a positive green influence on the hospitality industry whilst opening up pathways for my future in the environmental sector.
“I have always been rather fond of the Lakota proverb – ‘when a man moves away from nature his heart becomes hard’, and I feel that the hospitality sector especially plays a huge part in warming people’s hearts and that we have a responsibility to give this same kind of loving treatment to the environment.”
Michael Musgrave, General Manager at Apex City of Bath Hotel, said: “We have had the Green Committee in place for a while now to allow us to look at ways in which we can be more environmentally friendly and sustainable, which Sophie plays a big part in.
“However, when she suggested the idea of creating a biodiversity roof which would help her with her studies, we were delighted to be able to play a part. It’s definitely been a learning process for everyone involved and we are excited to see the results of the project. We’re keen to lead the way in sustainability in our field and play our part in the bigger picture.
“It’s very much been a passion project for Sophie and the rest of the team, Jon Smith-Lane, our Operations Manager and Luke Barnes, our F&B manager. They’ve done a brilliant job.”