News Release from Scottish Renewables


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Scotland: Whitelee Windfarm Welcomes 500,000th Visitor

UK’s biggest onshore windfarm celebrates visitor milestone

Since it opened its doors to the public in 2009, Whitelee Windfarm Visitor Centre has welcomed more than 500,000 visitors of more than 15 nationalities from countries across the world including Sweden, Australia, Brazil and Thailand. This month also marks ten years since planning consent for the windfarm’s development was officially granted in 2006.

Whitelee is the UK's largest onshore windfarm, located on Eaglesham Moor just south of Glasgow. Its 215 turbines generate up to 539 megawatts of electricity, enough to meet the annual demands of almost 300,000 homes. The Visitor Centre is independently managed by Glasgow Science Centre on behalf of ScottishPower Renewables.

More than 130km of trails connect the turbines at Whitelee Windfarm. These are used by walkers, runners, cyclists and horse riders, and are open for use by members of the public 365 days a year. Visitors to the windfarm can also book a bus tour through the Visitor Centre which lets them get up close to a turbine and learn about the windfarm, how it was developed and the ecology on site.

The Visitor Centre runs an extensive education programme, offering curriculum-based sessions for all ages from nursery level right through to further education or specialist interest groups. Since the centre opened, more than 31,000 school pupils have taken part in interactive environmental education workshops. The windfarm also has two full-time countryside rangers who run free events throughout the year, including activities such as wild overnight camping, bug hunts and a weekly buggy walk attended by local parents and babies.

As part of a weekend of celebrations to mark the milestone, visitor centre staff ran a competition to find the 500,000th customer and presented them with bikes for the whole family. The winner was Clare Horne who lives in Cambuslang with her husband James and five-year-old daughter Rosie and son, Ryan, who is studying art and design in Glasgow.

Clare said: “I was absolutely delighted to hear we marked the 500,000th visitors to Whitelee. Living so nearby, we’re regular visitors to the windfarm and my husband frequently brings his father and our five-year-old to enjoy the café and the interactive exhibits. We’re so excited to test out our new bikes and explore the tracks around the windfarm as a family. It really couldn’t have come at a better time for my son – just last weekend we were shopping for a new bike to help him get to his lectures!”

Ian Parkinson, Visitor Centre Manager at Whitelee Windfarm Visitor Centre, said: “It has been a pleasure to watch the Visitor Centre at Whitelee flourish over the past seven years. It’s very exciting to reach this milestone, and we’re delighted that the 500,000th visitor is someone like Clare who visits with her family on such a regular basis. We’re busy coming up with lots of exciting plans for the year ahead, and look forward to welcoming both new and returning visitors to Whitelee.”

Kirsten Oswald, MP for East Renfrewshire, added: “I am delighted for Clare and her family and I am sure they will all enjoy using their new bikes on the fantastic bike trails at Whitelee.

"It is a great achievement for Whitelee to have hosted 500,000 visitors. The visitor centre and outdoor trails are hugely popular and allow us all to get up close to this remarkable renewable energy generation on our doorstep."


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