Roland Hill Ltd, Aspatria, Cumbria - SME (Construction)

A family-run SME in Aspatria, North West Cumbria, is reaping the benefits of a new sustainable business plan, after receiving free support from the Cumbria Business Environment Network (CBEN).

Founded in 1951, Roland Hill Ltd provides contracting and building, steelworks, roofing, renewable energy and plant hire services.

Office manager and environmental champion, Felicity Barwise, has been supported by an ENWORKS adviser from CBEN since 2008, to help drive business growth through sustainable policies.

A comprehensive resource efficiency strategy was produced for Roland Hill Ltd, all staff have been trained on environmental issues, and sustainability matters have been embedded into new staff induction procedures.

This improved knowledge and understanding has also allowed the business to branch out into renewable energy services and modular building construction, as part of a wider business diversification strategy.

A modular 'Eco Home' bungalow has now been built on site, to showcase renewable energy technologies to clients.

Resource efficiency

Successful efficiency campaigns have included a 90 per cent improvement in recycling and re-use rates for construction materials on site. This has brought carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e) savings of 23 tonnes a year, and annual cost savings of almost £2,000.

CBEN has also supported Roland Hill with a vehicle fleet management system, to reduce fuel costs in its 25-strong fleet. GPS trackers have been fitted to monitor drivers’ mileage and top speeds have been limited in all vehicles, bringing annual savings of £8,000 from an investment of just £3,200. This has also saved 5,900 litres of diesel fuel and further reduced the company’s carbon footprint.

Ongoing work

A solar thermal system for providing hot water in the offices has been installed, which will save over £300 a year on energy bills, with a payback period of four years.

A range of additional renewable energy projects are also underway, including solar photovoltaic panels, ground-source heat pumps and biomass boilers.

'Win work'

Felicity Barwise commented on the company’s progress: "Our approach isn’t just about our own improvements; it is also fundamental when we go out and tender for new projects. Our approach to sustainability and resource efficiency is helping to win work for Roland Hill across the country."   

CBEN is a key member of the ENWORKS partnership, supporting businesses across Cumbria with boosting profitability by improving environmental performance.

Case study published on 29 November 2011