As well as reducing the charity’s energy bills, we helped it renegotiate and manage its gas and electricity supply contracts more cost-effectively. As Roald Dahl’s BFG might have said, it was too ‘scrumdiddlyumptious’ for words!
Opening to great acclaim in June 2005, the Roald Dahl Museum & Story Centre has so far welcomed 600,000 visitors, many of them children. Each year, 10,000 schoolchildren visit the museum and marvel as they wander its biographical galleries telling the story of Dahl’s life and work. They enjoy many interactive exhibits and activities, including a replica of the author’s famous writing hut. New attendance records were broken in 2016 as the world celebrated ‘Roald Dahl 100’ – the centenary of his birth.
As an educational charity, the museum is keen to make savings on its energy consumption and to better understand its energy usage. So when Office and Facilities Manager Tricia Croot received a cold call from Utilitywise in 2013, she decided the complete package we provided was the ideal solution. As well as reducing the charity’s energy bills, we would help it to renegotiate and manage its gas and electricity supply contracts more cost-effectively. As Roald Dahl’s BFG might have said, it was too ‘scrumdiddlyumptious’ for words!
Utilitywise started by carrying out an energy audit that would help the museum to identify savings. This useful tool helped the charity to spot areas where it could save energy, including introducing LED lights, as budgets allowed, and motion sensors in the galleries, which turn on and off depending on whether there are visitors in them.
We also installed gas and electricity smart meters, which digitally monitor the museum’s energy consumption and enable it to do more with less energy.
In 2016, the museum also accepted our energy consultant’s proposal to install Utility Insight, a monitoring and reporting system that gives it total insight into power consumption. Soon the system will be linked to the museum’s smart gas meters, which will enable it to monitor gas consumption in the same way it monitors electricity. Utility Insight enables Tricia to monitor irregularities in consumption and do something about it. She can now see spikes in electricity use, for example, during ad hoc school visits and advises staff not to turn on exhibits and audio-visual displays until just before visitors arrive.
“There’s no point having AV presentations running when there are no visitors in the museum,” she said. Analysing consumption and seeing ways to uncover savings is now child’s play for the museum. With new gas and electricity agreements, handled by Utilitywise, Tricia can spend more time running the offices and facilities at this amazing museum and using savings to continue inspiring children and educators for years to come.