Powis Biomass – ‘Mend and make do’

quite an old biomass bought back to life - during the installation

Over the past 12 months the team in Wales have installed a fair cross-section of renewable energy technologies ranging from £800k on PV, £500k on a biomass in Stackpole down to tens of pounds for the new LED bulbs. But the project which is my favorite and outshines the rest is a fairly simple one and not too technologically advanced but is quintessentially the essence of sustainability. There are the three R’s of sustainability which are Reduce, Reuse and Recycle. there is in fact a fourth… ‘Repair’.

Skilled brickwork - one chimney / forge

The castle skilled labour team and building surveyor (otherwise known as Sam and the lads) at Powis castle have moved out of a workshop in the cellar in the castle (Yes i know sounds a bit spooky)’ and have moved their workshop into a shed in the grounds of the castle. They have repaired the shed and insulated it to within an inch of its life with some of the left over mineral fibre used in the castle.(800m2 was used in the castle)  They have re-commissioned a very old Passat log boiler and repaired this, salvaged some used copper pipe from a recent re-service of the kitchen in the castle, brass soldered a set of radiators which were damaged  when they froze last winter in a holiday cottage and by ‘making do’ they now have a really comfortable heated workshop. The fuel for this state of the art biomass? – it’s heated with old pallets and anything woody which is pruned in the garden. Whilst they were adapting the flue on the shed they also built a forge to repair any metalwork. The cost was a fraction of a new ‘biomass’! system. Also as a well know credit card company advert would say  ‘the feeling of having done a good job’ – ‘priceless’

Old oil tank - the missing section is now the flue collar linking the biomass to the chimney. Have a look at the first photo

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