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Throwing new light on energy savings for Bar One Clothing

Bar One Clothing uses the SME Loan to install new LED lighting and rubber seal strip curtains to save £1,900 and 9.5tonnes of carbon emissions a year.

Having started life in 1982 as a wholesaler of blank garments on Glasgow’s Queen Street, Bar One Clothing’s business has grown steadily over the last 37 years. Having moved to a larger 2-storey facility in Finnieston, it now employs 30 people and specialises in clothing wholesale, screen printing, embroidery, transfers and garment finishing. It has a client list that includes national and international companies like Sony, Disney, BBC and many more, to local companies, councils, charities and clothing labels.

The business takes its environmental performance seriously. It operates in a market where customers are becoming much more discerning about the garments and products they buy, and where suppliers are being compelled to consider the impact their business is having on the planet - both socially and environmentally.

The business already offers a range of organic and Fairtrade items and was keen to look at how it could improve the energy efficiency of its 45-year-old Finnieston premises. These premises comprise a reception and production area on the ground floor and offices and warehouse on the first floor.

They contacted the service for independent and expert advice on the best ways to save energy. 

One of our advisers quickly visited the site and prepared a summary report which detailed a range of recommended energy-efficiency improvement projects. So that the business could fully understand and prioritise the best actions to take, each recommended project included the estimated cost to implement along with the annual savings it would provide.

Several recommendations were detailed in Bar One Clothing’s report including the installation of energy-efficient LED lighting in several areas and a new low voltage lighting distribution board. Occupancy sensors were also recommended to control lighting in the stairwells and make further energy savings. 

In addition, to reduce heating costs and provide comfortable, less draughty working conditions for staff, the installation of rubber strip curtains between the production and goods in/despatch areas was also recommended. The curtains would mean the area could be efficiently sealed when not in use, preventing draughts and meaning separate electric heaters would no longer be needed.

Together these recommendations would cost £13,500 to implement and save Bar One Clothing an estimated £1,900 a year on their energy bills, while also reducing its carbon emissions by an estimated 9.5 tonnes.

Thanks to the interest-free SME Loan, the business has now been able to implement these recommendations and is now enjoying reduced energy bills, improved lighting quality in key areas of the business and more comfortable working conditions across the production and goods in/despatch areas.

 “Thanks to the support received we were able to secure a loan from the Scottish Government. We would like to thank the consultant that came to do the site audit. We felt very reassured with the advice that was given to us and it was evident he knew his stuff”. Mark MacPherson, Accounts, Bar One Clothing


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Our free service for Scottish businesses is funded by the Scottish Government and by the European Regional Development Fund through the £73 million Resource Efficiency Circular Economy Accelerator Programme. The support provided to this organisation was delivered by Zero Waste Scotland’s Resource Efficient Scotland programme, which has been relaunched as Zero Waste Scotland’s Energy Efficiency Business Support Service as of 1 April 2020.

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