This is the second edition of Organic Places To Stay (in the UK) by Linda Moss and it’s essentially a guide book listing four different types of places to spend a night or week around the United Kingdom – bed and breakfast, hotels, self-catering and camping.
More than 300 pages long with over 500 different accommodations, it’s certainly a thorough guide to finding an organic place to stay, and there are maps at the beginning to help you easily find somewhere in your local area. After that the book is in alphabetical order by county.
Each location includes the name, picture, address, phone number, website, email and so on, with this update edition also including things like whether dogs and children are accepted, and handily, icons depicting whether the place is within one mile of a train station or bus stop.
Although the term ‘organic’ is never clearly defined, it does say whether each place is certified by a particular organic body which is useful and you’d expect them all to be organic in some way to be in the book in the first place. It’s laid out in a very clear manner and as long as you’ve read the ‘How to use this book’ section, there’s little difficulty finding your way around, with an index to help too.
The one area where this differs from a guide book is that the description of each place is written by the owner/landlord so there are no independent reviews of the places, and the author hasn’t actually visited them personally. This leads to each place enthusing about what they have to offer and one can only hope they live up to their claims, I certainly hope they would and I suppose it’s a testament to the book that I plan to go and check a few out for myself.
And when I do, I’ll be filling in the feedback form at the back of the book (well I’ll be emailing the publisher as I would quite like to keep the last page of the index which is on the back of the form) which is useful for them to add and I would expect the next edition to have some feedback from people who have stayed there. Obviously it can’t compete with the internet for space etc, but an independent opinion or two would be handy.
Overall, it’s a very handy reference book for both people visiting the UK and wanting to stay ‘green’ and also for a resident looking to have a green break. Organic Places To Stay costs £10.95 and is available from Green Books.
“Making good use of this book will help those who run these places to build relocalised and self-sufficient food systems for the future.” Patrick Holden CBE, director, Soil Association