Harrogate’s award winning Valley Gardens have another trophy to add to the list. The toilets in the new games pavilion and cafe have just taken the Eco Friendly category in the National Loo Awards.
This is the second time Harrogate Borough Council has won this award.
The Valley Gardens toilets are fitted with sun tubes and on the rare occasion that there is a need for electricity, it is provided by two LED down lighters which save up to 85 per cent when in use compared to conventional lighting. The combined hand washing units, including wash and drying, save about 94 per cent energy in total compared to a conventional hand washing facilities. All ventilation is powered by solar photovoltaic panels and rainwater is harvested so that mains water is not required.
Councillor Phil Ireland, the council’s Cabinet Member for the Environment says that the building was built using lightweight insulate blocks that were sourced locally to minimize environmental impact and they are made from recycled material.
Councillor Ireland added:
Everything about these toilets is about reducing the impact on the environment and on the public purse. They are very worthy of this award. I would like to thank the council’s property team who have delivered this award winning project. They tell me that they are even cheaper to run and even more eco-friendly than the toilets in Knaresborough which also won this top award. The industry is improving all the time and I am pleased that we can keep up with it.
The council has set itself a target of reducing our carbon emissions by 20 per cent by 2020. And we are certainly on target with 10.5 per cent as of this year. This is a saving of 1180 tonnes of CO2 – or the same amount produced by 70 households.
Measures the council has introduced to make these savings include:
- Installing a combined heat and power plant at the Harrogate International Centre which produces a large amount of heat and electricity, using an environmentally-friendly fuel made from waste fish oil
- New improved swimming pool covers coupled with new energy monitoring systems at leisure centres
- Following the introduction of the new waste collection service, carbon emissions from the council’s fleet has been reduced by 8 per cent
Main photograph shows Deputy Mayor Councillor Ian Galloway formally opening the new Valley Gardens Games Pavilion 1 August 2012.