Who are Alastair Sawday Publishing?

The lovely Sawdays eco-offices just outside of Bristol
The lovely Sawday's eco-offices just outside of Bristol

Hi everybody – this is Thomas and I thought I’d write today’s post to give Tracey a day off. I guess I’m what you would call the administrator/moderator of this blog but it is probably far more accurate to describe me as the guy who tweaks and fiddles with things and often stares at the screening muttering, “What have I done? Why has that right hand column vanished?”.

Anyway, I thought it would be a good idea to talk a bit on behalf of Alastair Sawday Publishing, as we are the folks publishing Tracey’s book. I don’t want this to come across as if we’re simply blowing our own trumpet as I think it will be of genuine interest to people who are interested in what Tracey’s is up to. You can be assured she’s being published by a company that walks the walk as well as talking the talk.

Sawday’s are probably best know for the Special Places to Stay series and Go Slow England, the first title in our new series on Slow Travel, but we also publish the Fragile Earth books and that is where The Book of Rubbish Ideas fits in. We are also pioneers in green publishing and for many years have been ‘greening’ the business in different ways.  Our aim is to reduce our environmental footprint as far as possible – almost everything we do has the environmental implications in mind.

Business practises  

We work hard to source our paper and print ‘environmentally’. Our book-printing is done in the UK, with a ISO14001-certified printer on recycled or FSC-certified paper using vegetable-based inks, and we have been offsetting our carbon emissions since 2001. We now do so through an Indian NGO, which means that our money goes a long way. However we are under no illusions about carbon offsetting: it is part of a strong package of green measures including running company cars on gas or recycled cooking oil; composting or recycling waste; encouraging cycling and car sharing; only buying organic or local food. In 2005 we created our own eco-offices by converting former barns to create a low-emissions building. By doing so we reduced our carbon emissions from 26 tonnes a year to just 6 tonnes through a variety of innovative and energy- saving building techniques.

“Alastair Sawday is a man on a mission. To reduce his company’s ecological footprint to as close to zero as possible. You are left in no doubt that he will succeed.” New Consumer Magazine 

The Special Places to Stay series 

Much travel has become more unsustainable since we began to publish, so we work hard to promote greener and more responsible travel – from using trains and bicycles to eating organic, celebrating all things green and staying in places where one’s money feeds directly into the local communities. We celebrate Special B&Bs and hotels that are doing particularly green things by giving them a special green page entry. In 2008 we introduced the Ethical Collection – a new ratings system awarded to places that rate highly on an ethical questionnaire covering environment, food and community.

“There’s green and there’s green. And then there’s independent travel publisher Alastair Sawday Publishing” Publishing News 

The Fragile Earth books 

Highlighting the perilous state of the world yet offering imaginative and radical solutions and some intriguing facts, these books will make you weep and smile. They will keep you up to date and well armed for the battle with apathy. 

“A back catalogue of core environmental thinking from the past 30 year” The Ecologist reviewing Fragile Earth title The Big Earth Book

Recent Awards

2005 – Business Commitment to the Environment Award 
2006 – Queen’s Award for Enterprise in the Sustainable Development category 
2008 – Independent Publishing Guild’s Environmental Publisher Award.  

“A model for all independents to follow” IPG judges upon awarding us the Environmental Publisher Award 

Other Sawday’s blogs and links

We’re now getting quite active online so if you ever manage to exhaust all the content on this blog then have a look at some of our other blogs:

whataboutchina.co.uk – This blog is in conjunction with our most recent Fragile Earth title, What About China? Don’t be mislead by the title as it’s a book that answers all those awkward questions about climate change such as “What is the point of doing anything about climate change, when China opens a new power station every week?” (The answer to that is here!) On this blog you can read further answers to tricky questions and even submit your own question to our panel of experts.

goslowengland.wordpress.com – This blog is no longer active at the moment but if was originally created to help launch our very successful book Go Slow England and you can still view the free sample pages plus read the posts from the very entertaining Hog Blog, which was written by one of our editors and concerns her experiences raising pigs for the first time. 

alastairsawday.blogspot.com – This is Alastair’s blog, the founder and director of Alastair Sawday Publishing, and although Alastair is not a hardcore blogger he usually writes about issues relating to green travel or whatever else happens to be on his mind that day!

Another link that may be of interest is to the free and secure registration page on our the main Sawday’s website, where you can sign up to receive out monthly newsletters. That’s the best way to keep on top of news about new releases, special offers and competitions.

That about covers it. Feel free to leave comments or questions and I’ll pop up again every now and then if I have any news that may be on interest to you all. Thanks for reading if you’ve made it this far!