Energy saving measures installed at Kingsmead Leisure Centre

New energy saving measures installed at Kingsmead Leisure Centre in Canterbury will reduce the amount of energy used at the centre by around a quarter.

The city council was awarded a grant of £644,000 from the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme in April last year following its successful funding bid.

Work on a variety of projects paid for from the grant is now complete, having taken place alongside the wider £8 million refurbishment of the centre which is scheduled to finish this September.

Three new air source heat pumps for the new wet changing area, including underfloor heating and new air handing units, have been installed. These replace one of the gas boilers.

Halogen lighting has been removed and replaced with new high efficiency LED lighting throughout the building.

Three new energy efficient ventilation systems for the dry changing rooms, gym and studios, have been installed, while 18 new solar panels are now in place on the south facing roof.

And an upgrade of the on-site power substation means that electric vehicle charging points can now be offered in the leisure centre car park.

All the new technology will result in a reduction in the energy used of 511,381 kwh, which equates to approximately 25 per cent of all the energy used at Kingsmead each year.

Cabinet members Cllr Connie Nolan, whose brief covers leisure centres, and Cllr Mel Dawkins, who has the climate change remit, have visited the centre (pictured above) to see the results of the work.

Cllr Dawkins said: “We were really pleased to secure this grant and lots of hard work has taken place over the last 12 months to bring these projects to fruition.

“Leisure centres by their very nature use a lot of energy, so to be able to reduce this by a quarter is a significant achievement.

“This all goes towards the council reaching our net zero targets for 2030 for council-owned assets. Other local businesses will be looking into decarbonising their buildings and we hope this can be an example of how this can be achieved.”

Cllr Nolan said: “Excellent progress is being made on the refurbishment of Kingsmead Leisure Centre and it’s great we have been able to complete these energy saving measures at the same time as the main work.

“With only a few months to go now, customers will soon be able to enjoy top quality facilities and we’re excited to see the end result.”

Derek Hambidge, Business Manager from Active Life, the charity delivering the multi-million pound transformation, said: “We are working with Canterbury City Council to create a new flagship leisure centre for the city that sets new standards for sustainable health and wellbeing facilities.

“The transformation incorporates the latest innovative technologies to embed sustainability throughout Kingsmead Leisure Centre, among many exciting new features that will be revealed when the centre opens.”

The Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme provides grants to public sector organisations to pay for heat decarbonisation and energy efficiency measures, and Canterbury was one of 231 projects nationally to be awarded a grant last April.

Published: 3 May 2024

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