UK’s first battery-powered hotel charges up

Five-tonne battery saves GBP 20,000/year

The Gyle Premier Inn
The Gyle Premier Inn

The Gyle Premier Inn at Edinburgh Park has installed a five-tonne battery to conserve around GBP 20,000 in energy costs every year. It’s a move that will not only save the hotel a huge amount of money but will also help reduce its environmental footprint and win the hearts of conservationists in the region.

The charging in a rather smart manner, works its magic by drawing its power from the national grid during the cheaper off-peak periods. The charge can then power the entire 200-room building independently for several hours of the day.

“The transition to a more flexible grid”

Cian Hatton, head of energy and environment at Whitbread (Premier Inn’s parent company), said: “Batteries are of course everyday items, more commonly associated with powering small household goods like the TV remote control, so it’s incredibly exciting to launch the UK’s first battery-powered hotel — an innovation which will save money, ensure security of supply and support the transition to a more flexible grid.”

Hatton heads the trial for the inaugural property — part of a pledge to cut the company’s carbon emissions in half by 2025.

A lower-carbon, smarter energy grid

Batteries - Premier Inn Edinburgh

The Gyle Premier Inn was chosen because of the large fluctuations in the rates of power production in the country. It has high levels of renewable power, causing the prices to be more volatile during high winds or sunny days. These factors make the ‘buy when cheap’ philosophy an ideal solution when it comes to purchasing the power supply.

The five-tonne battery is supplied by energy company E.ON, which could be producing more for other Premier Inn properties given the project’s success.

“To help balance supply and demand on the network”

Richard Oakley, customer accounts director at E.ON, said: “By adding the flexibility of battery storage we can also help Whitbread to upgrade to the full-board option of drawing electricity from the grid when prices are low, storing that energy for use at peak times and having the ability to sell it back to the grid to help balance supply and demand on the network.

“Premier Inn is showing how hotel chains and large power users can further save money, reduce their carbon footprint and support the development of a lower-carbon, smarter energy grid in the UK.”

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