BeaconHouse Events, a leading events agency based in Newcastle upon Tyne, has announced its four year ESG strategy, which aims to deliver considered, achievable actions, help the business reach responsible carbon neutrality and drive sector-wide change from inside the organisation.
The strategy outlines key commitments to the environment, people, governance and financial resilience. These plans include steps to reduce carbon emissions by 5% year on year, with the aim to be a carbon neutral business by the end of 2027 alongside supply chain engagement, research into sustainably sourcing materials, digital solutions to limit single-use print and staff training to upskill the team on the future of events both in-person and online. Alongside this there is a commitment to educate and empower the next generation of North East talent, supporting local charities and initiatives and giving the BeaconHouse Events team opportunities to sign up to support education initiatives, including Girls Network and founders4schools and supporting individual young people to thrive in the sector through mentoring schemes.
As part of the strategy BeaconHouse Events has been awarded the Standard Good Work Pledge by North of Tyne Combined Authority. This award recognises the businesses efforts to be fair employer, its commitment to staff health and wellbeing and the demonstration of social responsibility in the region.
Sarah Thackray, co-founder and director at BeaconHouse Events said, “Since forming in 2014 our vision has always been to drive positive, lasting impact with every event we do, whether that be a conference, exhibition, awards ceremony or festival, and now is the right time to also focus those efforts internally and look at how we can make lasting change from within the business.
“We recognise that the event industry has a major impact on our planet and by doing our part we can lead the way in making sustainable change in the sector. It is our job as a responsible employer and business to forge the path of what is possible and to collaborate with other organisations to learn from, and inspire, each other. We don’t want to make grand statements and big promises, we are committed to working with our team, our suppliers and our clients to make consistent, considered changes which will move us closer towards our goal of being carbon neutral within the next five years. We are proud to be early adopters of TRACE, a digital carbon measurement platform to help the event industry reach Net Zero. TRACE helps us to gather data on our carbon impact at each event, which in turn gives us the ability to work with clients to benchmark and track success alongside their ESG strategy.
“The inclusion of financial resilience was important to us as a team, without a robust business model you simply don’t have the capacity, skills or resource to invest back into the wider community. Everything that we have planned works in tandem with our growth plans for the coming years and allows us to support our clients to achieve both their business ambitions, while supporting them to reach their own ESG goals too.”
The agency, which saw a 32% increase in turnover in 2022, has worked with innovation sustainability manager Katrina Appleyard to develop an ESG strategy which will form a key pillar of both internal and external delivery from 2023-2027.
Katrina Appleyard, innovation manager for sustainability at Dynamo North East said, “BeaconHouse Events are taking responsibility for their own organisational impact before they are under any legislative pressure to do so which is incredibly refreshing to see. As part of our work together I carried out a lot of research into how the events sector is approaching sustainability globally, and while there are a lot of organisations looking at how they can produce green events, there is nothing being said about what it means to look internally and be a responsible events company from the inside out. While BeaconHouse were already behaving in a way that was socially conscious, this strategy has helped them to pin down what this looks like and make it much more explicit when it comes to achievable actions.
“The fact that BeaconHouse Events are even considering what they can control, and how they can make positive change from within the business, automatically makes them leaders in their field. The events industry is in a unique position in that they are built to bring people together and address societal issues, however that often has a direct impact on the environment when you consider things like travel or single-use materials, so there is a lot of learning to do within the sector on how to address this juxtaposition.
“This won’t be a linear journey for any organisation and there will be a lot of learning along the way. A big part of this process will be trying different approaches to see what works, and educating both clients and peers within the industry along the way, collaboration really is at the heart of it. What is inspiring to me about the work this commitment from BeaconHouse is that they are striving for social change and business habit change which is much bigger than simply looking at the impact of their events in silo.”
Sarah continued, “We have worked closely with Katrina on this strategy and her comprehensive guidance and expertise has been invaluable as we shaped our vison and goals.”
The strategy is based around key United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, otherwise known as the Global Goals, which look to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity. The BeaconHouse Events strategy particularly focuses on Climate Action, Responsible Consumption and Production, Quality Education and Good Health and Wellbeing; all areas where the business can have an authentic and last impact both in the North East and across the events sector as a whole.