Winchburgh Developments Limited partners with Greenspace Scotland to explore park-powered renewable energy solutions

Daisy Park

Following the Greenspace Scotland ParkPower Conference, Winchburgh Developments Limited (WDL) has been announced as the first private sector developer to sign up to Greenspace Scotland’s ParkPower programme. This pioneering partnership sees the developer commit to exploring the delivery of clean, green energy solutions with the potential to fulfil a significant proportion of Winchburgh’s energy needs.

The masterplan comprises over 300 acres of greenspace, including Daisy Park, which features a flooded claypit, as well as two sites at Glendevon and Hawkhill. Work began on the largest site, the new 78-acre Auldcathie Park, in early 2019.

These greenspaces are now being assessed by Greenspace Scotland and WDL’s engineer’s, SWECO, to identify their suitability for green technologies including ground source heat, water source heat and solar photovoltaic.

John Hamilton, CEO, Winchburgh Developments Limited said: “The scale of the work we’re undertaking here in Winchburgh provides us with the opportunity to explore the potential of our greenspaces to deliver renewable energy that could power a significant proportion of the town. By investing in these renewable energy solutions now, we strongly believe we will be able to secure a healthy and prosperous future for Winchburgh.

It’s very fitting that Winchburgh, a former oil shale town with a rich mining history, has this great potential to take a leading role in exploring energy solutions that will be fit for the 21st century.”

Julie Procter, Chief Executive, Greenspace Scotland added: “It’s vital that Scotland’s energy landscape changes dramatically over the next thirty years as we seek to become less dependent on fossil fuel-based energy sources and decarbonise our energy system. Our parks and greenspaces have huge potential to provide clean, green renewable energy to heat our homes and reduce our carbon footprint.

“We haven’t had the chance to work on a project of the scale at Winchburgh before, so this presents us with a massively exciting opportunity to create Scotland’s, and the UK’s, first town with a significant portion of its heat energy generated from its parks. Another first worth noting is that Winchburgh Developments Limited is the first private developer to sign up to Greenspace Scotland and the ParkPower scheme. We hope this project will set a precedent for other developers across the UK.”

Nick Knox, Chairman of the Winchburgh Community Council, and a Director of the Winchburgh Community Development Trust said: “I am personally delighted that this opportunity has been taken up by the developer. It would seem to offer nothing but environmental and financial benefits to the Winchburgh community, and I both applaud and welcome the initiative.”

Mike Jones, Technical Manager, Sweco UK, said: “At Sweco, we know first-hand from our work on projects both in the UK and the Nordic countries just how effective sustainable energy solutions like ground and water source heat pumps, district heating and solar PV can be. As such, we’re looking forward to working with the Winchburgh Developments team to leverage this experience in assessing the best technologies to create a sustainable community for the future. Realising the potential of clean energy sources will be key to meeting Scotland and the UK’s ambitious emissions targets, and Winchburgh’s initiative is a great example of how urban spaces can be adapted to sustainably power homes and businesses.”

Spanning 352 hectares, Winchburgh is one of the largest and most exciting placemaking projects currently underway in the UK delivering at least 3,450 new homes, improved transport links, employment opportunities, state-of-the-art schools and stunning new outdoor spaces to the historic village.

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