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Change Makers X: Mr & Mrs Smith

Living in harmony: grow it yourself – Robin and Judy Hutson, The Pig

About This Episode

In this Change Makers series in collaboration with Mr & Mrs Smith, we explore the travel industry’s role in delivering a more sustainable future in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic and the growing climate emergency.

This week Michael Hayman is joined by Robin and Judy Hutson, founders of the Pig hotels. What began with a charmingly revamped estate in the New Forest in 2011 has grown into a litter of the UK’s most sought-after stays, each characterised by unique and eclectic interiors and sprawling kitchen-gardens, where most things on the now-famous 25-mile menu are grown.

Situated in some of England’s most scenic southern locations, and with an ever-growing list of awards for innovation, sustainability and décor, the Pig hotels truly are among the best in the business. Listen as Robin and Judy share how they have lived in harmony with nature, invested back into local communities and incorporated strong family values into their hotels – and how all that has enhanced the guest experience.

Robin and Judy Hutson, Founders, The Pig

The very first seed sown in the ground in 2011 has led the way to inform everything The Pig does.

Now with seven Pigs in the litter, and by putting the emphasis firmly on the food with a very simple and honest philosophy to only use produce that the team can grow themselves in the kitchen garden or source from within 25-miles, its restaurants with rooms are home-grown in every way.

Each Pig has its own identity, each evolved rather than too designed, but each putting the kitchen garden at the very heart of the operation. This obsessive commitment to home grown and local produce means we can celebrate the seasons and use only what is fresh and available; the Pig chef, kitchen gardener and forager work hand in hand to create a menu of uncomplicated and simple British garden food, true to the micro seasons with the emphasis squarely on fresh, clean flavours.

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Lockdown List

What is a book that has changed your life?

Robin: To the Ends of the Earth by Ranulf Fiennes. It gave me a thirst for travel and adventure.

Judy: The book that changed my life is from many years ago when I was a student in Oxford and it is called The Prophet by Kahil Gibran. It provides timeless spiritual wisdom on a range of subjects.

What are you watching at the moment? 

Robin: I don’t watch a lot of TV but I loved Line of Duty earlier this year.

Judy: I have had it recorded for ages, but the 2016 adaptation of Tolstoy’s War and Peace with, amongst others in it, Lily James and Ade Edmonson.

Who is your biggest inspiration? 

Robin: Nick Jones – he is a very close friend. We worked together for years and has challenged plenty of conventional wisdom in hospitality.

Judy: From a design point of view it’s I