In March 2018 Public Power Solutions
received planning consent for one of the UK’s largest battery-based electricity
storage facilities in Swindon.
The battery storage scheme, at the former Mannington municipal depot, owned by Swindon Borough Council, has a permitted capacity of up to 50 MW. The brownfield site is ideal for energy storage, as it is enclosed between a main road, railway line and Retail Park, with a grid connection via the nearby substation at Toothill.
The project is designed to have a 30-year lifespan and will offer a long-term land rental income for Swindon Borough Council. It will deliver balancing services for National Grid, to help enable the growing proportion of renewable generation in the UK, making a significant contribution to the future flexibility of the UK’s energy system and helping reduce costs for consumers.
Connecting large batteries to the National Grid helps to smooth out the peaks and troughs which occur in power demand and match them better with variable supply. The batteries can be used to store energy when it is abundant, and therefore cheaper, and discharge it when demand is greater, and the cost is higher. The technology also helps reduce the need for expensive investment in upgrading the grid, also helping reduce energy costs in the long run.
The fact this will be one of the largest battery storage schemes in the UK speaks volumes for our ambition in Swindon. It also shows our willingness to look for innovative ways in which to utilise our assets, generating an income for the Council to protect vital services.
Cllr Toby Elliott
Swindon Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Sustainability