Supplier case studies

The RSA - green wedding venue

The RSA - London green wedding venue

Name: Amanda Mellett - Private Events Manager
Location: Central London, just off the Strand

Tell us a bit about yourself and your business
From its beginnings in 1754 through to the current day, the RSA has continued to make a difference by encouraging and supporting innovation and creativity throughout society.

The RSA (Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures & Commerce) works to remove the barriers to social progress.

Since its foundation, the RSA has always encouraged new ideas. It is, however, only possible to shape the future on the experience of the past, and the Society's House, which it commissioned in 1772, reflects this philosophy in a confident mix of the best modern design with inherited design.

We have sought to conserve the important space and fabric of the building without recreating what has been lost over time. Where possible we encourage young talent through commissioning new work whilst preserving and making accessible the fascinations of the Society's unique archive.

House numbers 6 and 8 are Grade I listed, and numbers 2, 4 and 18 are Grade II*.

What or who inspires you?
The RSA has an international network of influencers and innovators from every field and background supported by 27000 fellows. We are inspired and challenged every day by the people we meet and the projects we are involved in. With famous fellows such as Karl Marx, Alexander Graham Bell and Professor Stephen Hawking it's hard not to be.

What do you enjoy most about running your business?
It's great meeting so many different people, both our wedding clients and their guests. We offer a personal service to our couples that means we are with them every step of the way throughout their planning and on the day itself. It's nice to feel that you have really been part of someone's special occasion and been able of making their dream day come to life.

What is the most challenging aspect?
We endeavour to make our venue and services as ethical and green as possible but accommodating these needs while maintaining the standards of this Grade I listed building can be a challenge. The RSA's work is framed by five manifesto challenges that reflect its mission in 21st-century terms. One of which is Moving Towards a Zero-Waste Society, therefore the RSA both as an organisation and as a venue strives to practice what it preaches.

What do you feel you bring to an ethical wedding?
We know that our clients are concerned about the environmental impact of their everyday lives but sticking to their green principles for their wedding can prove challenging at an already stressful time. By choosing the RSA, our hard work means you can tick a few more eco-friendly boxes without even trying!

The RSA is ideally located just off the Strand with excellent public transport links so it is easy to encourage guests to leave their cars at home. The RSA is also licensed to host civil ceremonies so by having your ceremony & reception in the same venue, your guests do not have to make any additional travel arrangements. We recycle around 75% of all our waste and use low energy light bulbs in all of our offices, as well as choosing an electricity provider who supplies us with approx 25% green energy and unlike a lot of London buildings we turn off our lights at night!

The RSA is also committed to supporting British food producers, purchasing meat from grazed herds and fish from sustainable stocks. We prepare dishes on the premises from fresh rather than pre-prepared ingredients. Our menus are designed to reflect seasonal availability.
As Matt Prescott, Director of the RSA's CarbonLimited comments: "It's decisions that involve others that can make such a difference. The impact of a hundred guests thinking green for your wedding could have far-reaching benefits".

How do you see the wedding industry changing over the next five years (if at all)?
More and more couples are trying to get away from the traditional wedding day format. Often couples are also paying for their own weddings so are keen to get the best possible value for money and have a more discerning idea of what they require. Venues will need to become more flexible to meet client's needs and expectations.

Find out more about The RSA - London green wedding venue