Government Minister shown power of Pitlochry

Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Scotland Andrew Dunlop has paid a visit to our Pitlochry hydro station in Highland Perthshire to see renewable energy in full flow. Lord Dunlop witnessed real-time hydro power generation at SSE’s 15MW facility on the Tummel river and learned about a new £4million visitor centre currently being constructed overlooking the existing dam infrastructure. He discovered more about the origins of the station’s famous fish ladder and was guided by SSE’s resident archivist Alasdair Bachell on a tour of the artefacts on display to the public at the power station’s heritage centre - an attraction which once drew visitor numbers in Scotland second only to Edinburgh Castle.

Scotland Office Minister Andrew Dunlop said:

“The North of Scotland has a long and proud history of generating hydro electricity which as a renewable source plays a key role in the UK’s energy mix. It was a pleasure to visit the SSE team at Pitlochry to see hydro generation in action and particularly impressive to see the evidence of the valuable impact hydro stations have had for communities in rural Scotland. SSE’s emerging heritage centre will also, I am sure, be a great resource for the Scottish hydro industry and a major visitor attraction for this part of Perth.”

Andy Hay, Southern Hydro Group Manager for SSE, said:

“We were delighted to host Scotland Office Minister Andrew Dunlop at Pitlochry hydro and really appreciate the UK Government’s interest in our generation fleet. The dam has a long and distinguished legacy in the Pitlochry area and we are proud that hydro electricity historically improved the lives of so many ordinary people living in the north of Scotland. Indeed it is still going strong as one of the original low carbon technologies. It’s important SSE takes every opportunity to show decision makers what a great job hydro is doing and that it is not a resource we should ever take for granted. The archives and soon-to-be-finished visitor centre pay testament to the work and dedication that’s gone in to maintaining this vital resource.”

Free to visitors, the new heritage centre will use state of the art technology to showcase the role played by the engineers who brought hydro power to Scotland over 70 years ago. Visitors will also discover the secrets of the annual journey made by salmon, as they return to native Perthshire rivers to spawn.