Biomass boilers up and running at Killerton

Published : 25 Jul 2016 Last update : 08 Jan 2017

We've moved away from oil-fired heating by installing biomass boilers powered by sustainably sourced wood pellets. The boilers will be powered by 55 tonnes of wood pellets a year, improving energy efficiency, sustainability and reliability inside the historic property. The switch will save the charity around 24,000 litres of oil and almost £14,000 in running costs a year.

The old boilers were in basement of the 18th century house, alongside a colony of lesser horseshoe bats. As recommended by the Bat Survey, great care was taken to prevent obstruction to flight paths and work inside the house avoided the April to September maternity roost. A recent bat count has revealed that numbers have actually increased over the last year. 

The successful completion of the project marks another key milestone in the National Trust’s £33 million investment programme in renewable energy, supported by the charity’s green energy partner Good Energy.

" Killerton joins a host of renewable energy projects happening across the Trust, supporting our Grow Your Own commitment. As a conservation charity, we’ve pledged to get places off oil and produce 50% of energy from renewable sources by 2020. This biomass project will help towards this national target"
- Peter Bee, Building Surveyor

The boilers, installed by local Tiverton company ‘Treco’, have a combined capacity of 210Kw which is equivalent to heating 15 average UK homes. Killerton’s skilled Direct Labour team have worked alongside Treco to deliver the project, and built the biomass chimney and refurbished the boiler house buildings.

" We’re delighted to have switched to biomass and to be playing our part in the strategy to go greener. We have a responsibility to look after Killerton by making long-term decisions that will futureproof the property. The project gives us a more reliable heating system for 400 volunteers, 60 members of staff, 220,000 visitors – not forgetting the bats!"
- Phillip Smart, General Manager

Sustainable woodlands on the estate supply the local wood chip and fuel industry. Award-winning Killerton estate charcoal and logs are available to purchase, with revenue invested into conservation.

wood pellets at Killerton, Devon

Biomass keeping Killerton toasty 

We’ve left oil behind us and have installed two new boilers that run on wood pellets, improving sustainability, energy efficiency and reliability. Find out more about the project.