We’ve nearly completed work on our new bottling facility, Greencroft Two, at our main site in County Durham.
Greencroft Two will become the UK’s most sustainable wine bottling facility, powered by renewable wind and solar power.
The new £21million building will be more than 22,000 square metres (around 240,000 square feet, equivalent to about four football pitches) and will more than double the potential capacity at Greencroft Bottling to up to 400million litres per year, which is equivalent to around a quarter (28%) of all wine sold in the UK.
When complete, Greencroft Two could accommodate up to 10 bottling lines and seven ancillary lines for bag-in-box, cans, pouches, key kegs or any new types of sustainable packaging. The first of Greencroft Two’s new lines will be operational by Spring 2024 – a new €3million counter-pressure line. We will then gradually bring the remaining existing lines over from the current Greencroft Bottling, without disruption to production.
So why are we building a new bottling facility?
In recent years the Lanchester Group – which includes Greencroft Bottling and Lanchester Wines – has grown rapidly and requires more space for both the bottling facility and subsequent warehousing. Utilising additional space on the Greencroft Estate, we are developing a purpose-built bottling facility. When completed, this will be the most modern and environmentally sustainable wine bottling facility in the UK, housing new filling lines to double present capacity and accommodate new forms of packaging as the market moves ever closer to carbon-neutral formats.
You can see the site in our drone footage below
The video above is from May 2022 and shows the development in progress. To the left, you’ll see our truck park while in the background is Lanchester Wines and our current site. The development is close to our wind turbines which will generate power for Greencroft Two, as will the solar panels you can see on the roof.
Powered by Renewable Energy
The Solar Panels in the roof will have 3 MegaWatts of solar which will create around 2.9m kiloWatt hours of electricity per year – the chemical reactions which occur within solar panels are more efficient at cooler temperatures so County Durham’s bright and sunny, yet rather chilly, weather is perfect for our solar panels.
We’ve even adjusted the gradient of the roof to make the most of the sun. On the north side, if we’d used the normal gradient, we would have had 400,000 kiloWatt hours but by lowering it, we’ll get 700,000 kiloWatt hours. The existing wind turbines will also provide backup power and we will, at a later date, be installing batteries to store the power we generate – the challenge with renewable energy is that it’s not always used when it’s produced.
When Greencroft Two is complete, it is estimated that, overall (new solar and existing on-site wind turbines combined), the business could generate up to 8 million KiloWatt hours per year of clean, renewable energy.
- Our facility will be powered by our on-site wind turbines which feed directly into our on-site substations, with excess sold back to the National Grid – usually, wind turbines feed into the grid and businesses ‘buy back’ power.
- 3 MegaWatts of solar which will create around 2.9m kiloWatt-hours of electricity per year
- Together, these are sufficient to power our facility. This will be the first facility of this size not beholden to the National Grid