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Sunday, July 21, 2024

Lecht Steps Up Moves to Net Zero

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The Lecht Ski Company Limited has embarked on a £270,000 project to improve operational efficiencies that will result in a 23-tonne reduction in carbon emissions over the next three years.

The project will boost company turnover and support 12 full time equivalent rural jobs.

It will also increase capacity for snow sport beginners.

The company has secured up to £135,000 from Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) towards the total cost of the project.

The HIE funding will help cover the costs of plant and equipment, including a low carbon piste groomer and magic carpet lift.

It will also help with updating motors and gearboxes and installing new technology panels in the lifts to reduce energy consumption.

The Lecht Ski Company is one of the largest employers in the Tomintoul area, located in a high-level pass that retains snow cover naturally, making it ideal for snow sports.

Outside of the ski season.

The lifts are used by mountain bikers, helping the year-round attractiveness of the centre.

The business workforce comprises a core of 12 permanent employees plus additional part time seasonal colleagues during the busier winter season. 

All are paid at least the real living wage.

HIE has been involved with the Lecht Ski Company for more than 25 years and has supported investment in plant, equipment, infrastructure, marketing, strategy development, business modelling, mentoring and digital advice.

Angie Smith, HIE’s head of business growth in Moray, said:

“There are several benefits to this project.

“It will enhance the year-round visitor offering and improve customer experience.

“It will also reduce running costs and create operational savings at the attraction, thereby improving the longer-term sustainability of the business.

“This in turn will help retain and create new vital employment in this part of rural Moray.

“The significant reduction in carbon emissions, meanwhile, will contribute to wider efforts in the transition to a net zero economy.

“I’m very pleased we have been able to support the project and look forward to continuing to work with the Lecht team as they implement their plans.”

Annette Cockburn, Lecht Ski Centre general manager, said:

“We are delighted that HIE have been able to support The Lecht with these projects.

“Updating motors, gearboxes and the installation of new panels into some of the lifts will be much more efficient and will also improve their operation. 

“The new Pister will be able to cover much larger areas reducing the workload of the other groomers.

“This will help significantly in reducing our carbon footprint.”

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