Valentines day

Valentine's Day is a great excuse for Cumbrian people to send tokens of love to their nearest and dearest, or a secret crush or two.

But it can also be used to show a little TLC (tender loving care) to the Cumbrian environment whilst still making our loved ones feel special. With a little planning everyone can find the perfect gift that will bring joy to their sweetheart while protecting the planet. And with almost 100,000 Valentine's cards sent every year in Cumbria, Resource Cumbria has some great tips to be a little less wasteful this time around.

Top card tips

  • Send a special Valentine's e-card or text message - they are good for the environment and for your pocket (especially if you have more than one special love)
  • Remember to recycle you card - or cards! - either through your kerbside collection service if they accept card or at your local recycle point.
  • Always avoid over packaged cards
  • Look for charity cards, where you know the profits are going to a good cause
  • Go for a card from a local craft market, especially from designers who use recycled materials

Top gift ideas

  • Order flowers from a local florist and ask for them to be wrapped in paper that can be recycled, and remember to compost the flowers afterwards
  • Choose chocolate with a fair trade label - it helps communities in need and, with a higher cocoa content, tastes delicious
  • If bling is there thing then consider jewellery that is made from recycled plastic bags or recycled glass bottles for a change, see recyclenow.com for more ideas.
  • To pamper a loved one, choose cosmetics and toiletries that are organic and not tested on animals
  • For something a bit different, name a star after them or dedicate a tree to a special friend instead and help the Woodland Trust restore the UK's native woodland heritage.

Home cooking tips

  • Dine romantically by candlelight - it saves energy as well
  • Buy fruit and veg loose for the meal and cut down on packaging
  • Remember to put all those fruit and veg peelings in your home compost bin
  • Don't forget to recycle the empty bubbly bottle - or bottles!