Solar panels are just one of the many energy saving features included in the completed construction of Britain's Energy Coast Construction Skills Centre.

The £7 million project at Lakes College in Lillyhall has been completed ahead of schedule and includes a number of different technologies to provide a truly energy efficient building.

A 60 sq m solar array is one example of this, with the photovoltaics expected to save up to 6.3 tonnes of CO2 per year, in addition to generating 9KW of electricity at their peak output. 

The 3,380 sq m building also includes systems such as heat recovery, natural ventilation, rainwater harvesting and low energy light fittings. Furthermore, the building has extra insulation and thermally efficient windows.

Funding for the building was provided by Nuclear Management Partners (£4 million), Britain's Energy Coast Campus – through funders the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority – (£2million), and Lakes College (£1 million).

The new building will provide an educational venue for students to hone their craft in the utility, energy, trade and construction sectors.

An estimated 600 students will benefit from the West Cumbrian facility, with courses available in electrical installation, plumbing, brickwork, carpentry and joinery, painting and decorating and machinist workshop.

In addition to this, students will also be able to learn about renewable technologies, with teaching provided on the subject of solar photovoltaics and solar thermal hot water systems.

Features such as floor vision panels have been installed for students to understand how the flooring was constructed. For aspiring plumbers, the toilets have clear cisterns and clear rear vision panels, so they can achieve a greater understanding about the system.

The building is part of the existing Lakes College, who also run the centre, and features start-of-the-art teaching spaces and workshops.