Moving home is big deal.

If you don’t give yourself enough time to be organised, you may find out quickly how easy it is for things to go wrong.

When moving, the idea of some of your household items getting left behind or even broken can bring some of us to tears.

But it’s not just your fragile items that hold a lot of value.

Many of your belonging’s are irreplaceable and hold special memories.

That’s why when choosing a removal company you should really take the time to get to know them by understanding their values and work ethic.

Read on to see if Gold Bear Removals could be the right fit for you.

What makes you different from the other removal companies in Sussex?

Primarily, it’s the fact that we plant a tree for every removal done with us that costs over £200. That part of our green policy no one can compete with.

Why are you called Gold Bear Removals? Does it mean anything?

When we formed the company, we wanted our removals to represent two key things. We wanted gold in our name to signify a gold standard for removals that we will always endeavour towards.

We also wanted to show how much we value strength over laziness. Strength which is where the bear fit perfectly. Also we liked the fact that although in the wild a bear is a grizzly animal, it is also known very affectionately. So in a nutshell = we get the job done to the highest standard with a smile on our faces.

How long have you been in business?

We have been operating for the past 3 years, although we have been working professionally in the industry since 2007.

“My now wife Roxy and I thought that together we could start a gentler and more streamlined process than what was currently being offered to the public”

Can you tell us a bit about how Gold Bear Removals started?

My now wife Roxy and I thought that together we could start a gentler and more streamlined process than what was currently being offered to the public. We wanted to undo all the undesirable stereotypes that surround removals. Some of those might be a male dominated environment who are seen as uncaring and maybe even cowboys. We wanted to offer a calm, transparent service that puts the power in the hands of the customer. We wanted to make them feel in control. We had the skills in removals and the service industry to make this process as pleasant as possible and we wanted to offer that experience to people, so we did just that.

“We thought this was a revolutionary idea and immediately thought about it in relation to our business and what we could do”

Where did the idea of tree planting first stem from? (pun intended)

Well we came up with this idea when staying at a hotel. The bathroom door had a little sign on it saying something like “Please hang up your towels, so we know they do not need washing. The energy used in washing towels causes lot’s of unnecessary greenhouse emissions, so we pledge to plant a tree for every 20 towels re-used”.

We thought this was a revolutionary idea and immediately thought about it in relation to our business and what we could do. We drive a lot and we thought what better way to combat that than planting trees?

We started looking into doing this ourselves, but we came to realise how difficult it was for small businesses to offset their emissions in general. We found a few people online who offered this service but were often expensive and difficult to set up.

It was just coincidence that a few months into our research we heard that our friends at the beautiful Ringshall Grange in Suffolk were starting a tree planting project in conjunction with the Woodland Trust, and we jumped at the chance to get involved.

On top of joining forces with them to provide funding, we also helped by planting the trees ourselves.

We thought this was important because most massive companies donate to offsetting programmes but not many actually get in involved hands on deck. That’s why thought this was the perfect programme for us.

“We thought, what is the maximum number of trees we can plant?” 

Gold Bear Removals plants a tree for every £200+ removal. Why did you choose this incentive over planting a tree based on the carbon footprint of your moves, or distance moved?

We worked out we could easily cover our annual emissions footprint with a small number of trees, but we wanted to plant as many trees as possible.

Instead of doing just enough to cover our moves, we thought, what is the maximum number of trees we can plant?

“And this starts at a local level, a community level”

You recycle boxes from local shops to use in your removals. Why is it important for you to work with local businesses?

It’s important because we’re helping each other. If you feel strongly about something, then you usually have to take matters into your own hands. And this starts at a local level, a community level.

Through this we receive a cheaper or free packing option for our clients. And the shops get to feel like they aren’t disposing of tons of cardboard every month. Everybody wins.

How can local businesses find out more information and get involved?

Either through our website or just giving us a call.

How did being based in Sussex impact your green policy? How influential was local politics for this?

Being a Brightonian we are all so proud to be in the only green county in the whole country. This is a point of pride for us all and we do receive positive feedback from people on our efforts. In many ways it was a personal decision and not an economic one.

“Although when the company was in infancy we did move Caroline Lucas herself”

Have you ever carried out a move for the local council?

Not yet but we would love the opportunity to work with the council in any way. We as of yet have not had the opportunity. Although when the company was in infancy, we did move Caroline Lucas herself. She was lovely. We plan to try and form a relationship with them as well as other green organisations in Brighton.

Has the council supported your business in any way?

Not as yet, but we welcome any support possible.

How have your customers responded to using a green moving company?

Most have been very complimentary. Some customers say that they chose us purely based on this fact. Bottom line cost is still important to many customers though, so we have to be competitively priced alongside this

“If you have boxes you want to get rid of, we will come and collect them from you and recycle them”

Do you have any tips for customers to make their move greener?

Yes!

For Gold Bear Removals planning the key.

If you give yourself enough time you can have a very green move indeed because when you are in rush you only have time to deal with the bare necessities.

– Moving house is a time for decluttering, from personal belongings to furniture. Give yourself enough time to recycle and upcycle anything worthwhile Ebay and Gumtree is always a good place to start because you can make some money from your unwanted junk. If you want to give it away for free but don’t have the time to send it to it’s new owner try Freecyle and Freegle and they’ll come and collect your unwanted goods for you. What’s Mine is Yours is a fantastic site to swap your clothes. Also Recycle Now was set up by the government to show you were you nearest recycling center is.

– If you’re sourcing your own boxes, don’t buy new – go and make friends with your local shop and ask them to save them for you instead. Most shops are very willing.

– For your end of tenancy clean, you can hire a green cleaning company like Green Clean that try wherever possible to minimise their impact on the environment and promote a responsible cleaning ethos and positive. Always try to go for cleaning companies that use green cleaning products that are better for the environment and your health.

– After your move, dispose of all packaging in an ethical way. If you have boxes you want to get rid of, we will come and collect them from you and recycle them.