Country hotel plugs into forest next door

A HOTEL that was blowing a fuse has solved its power problems with renewable energy.

A HOTEL that was blowing a fuse has solved its power problems with renewable energy.

Battlesteads Country Inn and Restaurant at Wark on Tyne, near Hexham, has installed a woodchip boiler after difficulties with its electricity supply.

Owner Richard Slade said: “We bought the hotel in 2005 in a fairly dilapidated state. Once we had the place up and running, we found that, should all the guests require a shower at the same time, the mains electrics blew!

“The obvious option was to apply for more electricity, but this was not possible as the village was already operating on the maximum allocation.”

A survey of the building revealed it to be a good candidate for a woodchip boiler and although initially the hotel chose the green route for practical reasons, it has scooped a Green Tourism gold award for its eco efforts.

The hotel is near Kielder Forest and buys the woodchips from nearby Park End Estate.

The hotel was guided by NewHeat, a programme funded by development agency One NorthEast which conducts feasibility studies and advises firms on using wood for energy,.

Project director David Clubb said: “It’s important for businesses not to feel like they are being forced into a corner on the issue of renewable energy and more that we’re here to offer free impartial advice about whether wood heat is an option for their company.”

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