Roberta & Pete Eardland, a sustainability consultant and ocean scientist, respectively, tied the knot last month – but that’s not all we need to congratulate them on!
They also earned the title of Doer of the Month thanks to their friend’s generous ‘wedding pledges’, together pledging to save almost 5 tonnes of carbon. I caught up with Roberta to find out more…
You were raising pledges for your wedding – that’s incredible. You must take sustainability seriously then – what else were you doing to make your wedding sustainable?
Having a sustainable wedding was central theme for us. There were plenty of venues offering an ‘environmental’ wedding in a field but we found very few places really thinking about sustainability. In the end we opted for a great venue – Gants Mill – that has a working watermill generating its own hydropower. We also found some absolutely brilliant caterers – the Dorset Chef – who produced a vegetarian (and lactose- and gluten-free!!) feast of sharing platters that everyone raved about.
Sounds incredible! What made you decide to ask for pledges through Do Nation, and how did you hear about it?
We already have a flat full of possessions and certainly didn’t need lots more things to stuffocate us! I remembered hearing about Do Nation when I was doing an environmental Masters degree. We felt that this was the perfect way for our friends and family to be part of creating a future in which we can continue to be happy.
How did people react to being asked to make pledges? And how did it make you feel?
We primarily asked our guests to make pledges instead of giving us any gifts. However, there were some guests who we knew would want to feel as if they had given us something more solid, and so we suggested that if this were the case we would welcome contributions towards our honeymoon.
For the most part our friends and family really got on board with the idea of pledging! We keep hearing from people after the wedding saying that e.g. they have spent the weekend expanding their veg patch.
It is just lovely to know people are making such an effort on our behalf. Particularly for our friends, pledges were a great way of contributing to our day without spending lots of money. There was some initial hesitancy, perhaps because people aren’t used to the idea (compared to normal gift-giving), but come the wedding day we had loads of pledges in!
What was the most surprising or exciting pledge someone made?
One of our friends committed to putting solar panels on her house. Amazing. That pretty much blew all of our targets wide open. We were also delighted by the number of people who committed to reducing the meat in their diet.
And most importantly – how was the day itself?
Just the best day ever. We concentrated on making a day that was personal to us, rather than being bound by traditions. Perhaps most special was the ceremony, written by us to reflect our views on marriage and gender equality, and led by our family and friends. That and Pete’s 3 year-old godson singing Baa Baa Blacksheep during the open mic session!
Well, that sounds like a story he’ll be recounted at many a wedding to come!
Congratulations again, and I hope many of the pledges turn into equally happy lifelong commitments.
It’s not too late to support Roberta and Pete, you can make your pledge here.
Earn a year’s supply of ice cream!
We really like to celebrate our most enthusiastic and inspirational Doers. So each month, we reward our the person or team who collects the most pledges with 12 Ben & Jerry’s fairtrade ice cream vouchers!
Could you be the next to scoop the title?