300 Glenrothes homes to miss out on £24m heating scheme

The scheme was given the green light earlier this year but has since been significantly scaled down.
The scheme was given the green light earlier this year but has since been significantly scaled down.

Just 45 homes in the town are to benefit from the £24 million district heating network currently being installed in Glenrothes, it has been revealed.

It was originally hoped that the Glenrothes Energy Network would provide cheaper energy for 372 homes in Auchmuty and Jubilee Grove.

However, the costs of the project spiralled and, after the Scottish Government refused to plug a multi-million pound shortfall, Fife Council was forced to scale back the project.

It has now been revealed that just 45 homes, covering Jubliee Grove, the sheltered housing complex and bungalows, will be covered by the scheme.

The reduced ‘core scheme’ will still include the the council’s Fife House complex, Rothes Halls and the industrial and commercial customers on route. However, more than 300 homes will be missing out.

The pipework has been sized to allow future expansion to up to 290 domestic properties, subject to future funding being secured for additional phases.

A Fife Council spokesperson said: “The scheme gives us a platform for expansion and the hope is that once we commission the scheme and demonstrate its successful operation, we will then be able to seek funding for expansion.”

The Scottish Government is putting £8.6m towards the heating scheme, while RWE is investing £13.6m.

Work began on constructing the Glenrothes Energy Network back in June, with work now being carried out on Leslie Road. Works are also progressing on Queensgate and Fullerton Road.

The aim of district heating schemes is to provide communities and businesses with access to cheaper heat from efficient local sources, cutting CO2 emissions.

The heating network is expected to be operational by the end of January 2019.