New solar energy farm shines light on lost World War 2 shelter in Montrose

The newly-installed solar energy farm at Montrose water treatment works.
The newly-installed solar energy farm at Montrose water treatment works.

Work to install one of Scottish Water’s largest solar panel projects to date, at a waste water treatment plant in Montrose, has unearthed a lost piece of military history.

Staff from Scottish Water Horizons and contractors Absolute Solar and Wind were working on the installation of the panels on land at the treatment plant when they discovered a preserved air raid shelter from World War 2.

Project manager Mari Davies, said: “Thankfully nothing hazardous was uncovered which meant we were able to carry on with the work. 

“The treatment works also sits on part of what was RAF Montrose which is said to be haunted by the ghost of Lieutenant Desmond Arthur, a pilot who crashed there in 1913.  There have been many sightings of him over the years, but luckily none of our contractors had any paranormal experiences.

“Ghosts aside, the installation went without a hitch, and the team were careful to work around the operational needs of the site, meaning we were able to work without interruption.”

 “We collaborated closely with teams across Scottish Water to ensure the finished solar panels looked really smart. The site is visible to the public, so it was important that the visual impact of the scheme was taken into consideration.”

The WW2 air raid shelter re-discovered at Montrose water treatment works
The WW2 air raid shelter re-discovered at Montrose water treatment works

The project, Scottish Water Horizons’ largest to date, will offset around a fifth of the works’ energy consumption, generating around 240,000 kWh a year – enough to boil a kettle over 1.5 million times.”

The team are actively looking for new Scottish Water sites which could benefit from similar schemes (one is already set up nearby in Brechin) to help offset high energy use and reduce operational costs.

Pixie Energy

Pixie logo Pixie Energy is an incubator and a facilitator of strategic research and project work, focusing on energy regulation, policy and markets at the local and national level. Find out more about Pixie Energy here.

Local Energy Matters: Scotland

Local Energy Matters: Scotland is a free-to-download brochure with a focus on energy tariffs in the two Scottish electricity distribution regions, as well news on local energy and low-carbon schemes.

Previous editions can be download here.

Scottish energy market overview

You can read an overview of the Scottish energy market here.

Scottish Government energy feed