A YouGov survey commissioned by ScottishPower has found that only one in ten businesses have reduced their energy consumption in the past year, and that 60% of small business owners don’t regard energy efficiency as a priority, potentially missing out on vital savings.

As part of an initiative to encourage businesses to become more energy efficient, the energy provider is working with the Carbon Trust to offer businesses advice on reducing energy consumption to become more efficient and save money. One rural business championing energy efficiency is Williamston Barns, a holiday letting business run by Neville and Viv Gill.

Neville is a sheep farmer who has embraced diversification and energy efficiency to help him transform his business.  In response to the fall in market prices, Neville and his wife Viv transformed historic barn buildings on their farmland into luxury holiday lets, which are heated and powered entirely by renewable energy.

Neville said: “The farm itself was not big enough to make a living out of sheep farming, so the decision was taken to diversify so that the farm was able to survive in the long term. Many people think investing in energy saving materials and processes is very expensive and hard work, but the reality is that many measures are easy to adopt and the initial spend pays off.”

The energy efficiency efforts that Neville and Viv have gone to provides a fantastic example for other businesses to follow in order to help them improve their bottom line. As well as installing a biomass boiler, the couple invested in a wind turbine to power the holiday homes, in addition to the entire farm.

For more information about energy efficiency or to get a quote for your business energy supply visit www.scottishpower.co.uk/smallbusiness