Key Facts

  • Pioneering Wood Fuel Co-Operative supplying wood chip to boiler owners in the Dartmoor National Park area.
  • Supplies wood chipped from locally sourced Dartmoor timber.
  • Have assisted several Treco clients to gain access to high quality wood fuel and save 50% on their fuel bills.
  • Have also helped Treco clients move towards self-supply of wood chips and save up to 80% on their fuel bills
  • This is proportional to their expected annual consumption and used to procure timber for seasoning up front, reducing stockholding costs.
  • The co-operative also works with a local sawmill at Marley Head. The sawmill supplies high quality timber to them for extraction of primary products and higher value timber for building products.
  • The lower value timber is chipped for wood fuel, which realises the ‘whole value’ - a key part of the co-operative’s ethos.

The Set Up

  • The Co-Operative owns a Heizohack HM4-300 chipper, supplying wood chips via a tractor and trailer fitted with a blower unit to individual clients.
  • The short supply distance enables the co-operative to keep costs down, which is aided by sourcing timber from local woodlands.
  • Costs are further reduced by members paying a joining fee.

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“We’ve been pleased to work with the Great Barn, Higher Coombe and a number of other Treco installations to give the client a complete solution. This has included assisting withem with wood chipping services as well as timber from their own woodland. This is delivering clear lifestyle and environmental benefits, as well as significant cost savings to boiler owners and has created local employment in wood fuel supply.”

Andy Bradford, Dartmoor Woodfuel Co-Operative

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Dartmoor Woodfuel Co-Operative (Commercial) - Project Background

The Dartmoor Woodfuel Co-Operative began in 2009 as an Industrial Provident Society (IPS) by a group of local enthusiasts for renewable energy and wood fuel. Their aim was to provide good quality wood chip from locally sourced timber for use in their own wood fuel boilers.

They also aimed to foster collaboration between local woodland owners and biomass installations as a means of developing business in the area, reducing carbon emissions and promoting public awareness of renewable energy. This enabled them to move from ever-more expensive oil to lower cost wood fuel, as well as delivering reduced emissions and environmental benefits.

The main house and outbuildings , converted to meeting rooms and accommodation, are served by a district heating scheme, supplied from a wood fuel boiler. From first producing wood chips in 2009, the Co-Operative has grown to serve around 15 members, all businesses and private residences in the immediate Dartmoor area.

 

Supporting Treco Clients

The The Dartmoor Woodfuel Co-Operative have assisted several Treco clients to gain access to wood fuel. They have also and have worked with a number of them to establish self-supply facilities. Quality is controlled though membership of the Woodsure/ HETAS Accreditation Scheme.

A good example is the Great Barn in Higher Ashton, who now self-supply wood chips for use in their Treco-installed 100kW Powerchip boiler. Because of the steepness of the slopes on Dartmoor and relatively wet valleys, timber extraction is particularly suited to horse logging and the Great Barn have their own horse and forester.

Brimpts Farm is also the home for Cleveland Horses, which are used for Horse Logging. In 2013, the co-operative added a large three-sided barn facility to assist in the drying of timber under cover and the provision of additional chip storage space.

Developing local employment opportunities, new skills and careers for young people has led to the co-operative employing a fiorestry apprentice, sponsored by the Forestry Commission and Silvanus Trust. As part of supporting “Grown in Britain”, Treco have funded additional training in woodfuel production to supplement his apprenticeship.