Its good to talk – South West visits Croft castle

croftThings are moving on apace with our Renewable Energy Programme –

  • Plas Newydd Heat Pump system is doing its thing, and performing better than calculated.
  • Hafod Y Porth hydropower system is generating nicely thank you.
  • Stickle Ghyll hydropower is moving towards generation in the next few weeks.
  • Ickworth House biomass heating project moves into delivery phase shortly.

Our fifth pilot biomass project at Croft Castle, completed last summer, played host to property teams from the South West region of the Trust in order for them (and me) to gain a greater understanding of whats involved in delivering a biomass heating project, as well as whats involved in operating it following project completion and handover to the property.sharing experiences

Ed (project Manager) together with David (General Manager for Croft Castle) outlined the origins of the project, explaining the business case for progression and how the scheme was one part of the wider Renewables Programme with the aim of meeting our committment to generate 50% of our energy needs from renewables.

We then linked up with the Head Ranger to discuss woodfuel production and management, and to see for ourselves the size and scale required to feed the boiler.size and scale

It was good to put into context just what 80 tonnes of timber looks like (“is it a wheelbarrow full, or a pick up size?”), discussion on sustainable yield, staff capacity, opportunity costs, storage all followed with some good questions being raised on “what it will mean for me?”ta dah



From here we carried on to the large woodchip store area – Ed was very proud of this area – and again we could all see a great example of a fit for purpose chipping, storage and loading area which does not impact on the visitor enjoyment of the property.


A really valuable day, raising lots of questions and discussion. Many thanks to Ed and the property team for organising.

I have a feeling more visits will be following on from this.







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