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Viltra successfully delivers a bespoke wastewater project for the RSPB in Scotland, at one of their most protected nature sites in Britain, with some of Scotland's most amazing wildlife.

Client Overview

Nestled in Abernethy in Scotland, the Loch Garten Nature Centre is the perfect spot to experience this amazing forest. RSPB Loch Garten Nature Centre offers the chance to get close to some of Scotland's most amazing wildlife. Visitors attend the Nature Centre during spring and summer for a wealth of Highland wildlife, breeding osprey, crested tits, red squirrels, bank voles, great spotted woodpeckers, siskins, common lizards and close-up views of Caledonian forest wildlife.


Abernethy is home to around 5,000 species, many of which are rare or threatened. The habitats and species here are safeguarded by UK and international law, making it one of the most protected nature sites in Britain.

Considering the delicate nature of the site, it was imperative that Viltra carried out work with minimal impact on the surrounding environment. It was critical that this work was completed before the ospreys returned from Africa to nest in Loch Garten in spring.

The reserve contains the largest remaining chunk of the ‘Great Wood of Caledon’, the Caledonian pine forest which used to cover much of the Highlands. Thousands of years of tree-felling and over-grazing have meant that just 1% of this wildlife-rich forest remains. With some of the trees being several hundred years old, we had to hand dig the trench for pipework to avoid any disruption to the roots of the trees.

With the Nature Centre operational during these works, noise levels had to be kept to a minimum at all times in order to reduce disturbance to the wildlife and keen bird watchers on site. Our remit was to make no impact on the day-to-day activities of the visitors or the animals.

Given the proximity to the loch, we were aware that we would be dealing with a high water table. We planned our design with this in mind, installing anti-floatation measures which we were confident would manage this issue for us.

Our Solution

Viltra designed, manufactured and installed a bespoke concrete wastewater system with sealed vehicular concrete lids to ensure the system fitted in with the surrounding landscape.

We endeavoured to make the lids as discreet as possible so the plant would not detract from Loch Garten’s unique nature reserve. All the while, the treatment plant was operating out of sight to an optimum standard. The car park where the system was installed was reinstated, without any interference. The system was designed to meet the stringent conditions imposed by SEPA to remove phosphates, ammonia and BOD. As the system was discharging 2m below the tide line, we had to ensure the highest quality effluent targets were met.

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Start a project with us

At Viltra, we are specialists in separating waste and water. Whether you have an individual household, a business or a development, we all need and rely on water, we all create and dispose of waste and we all must keep these two worlds apart.

Viltra are a dedicated team who designs, manufactures and installs wastewater treatment solutions for a wide range of sectors across the UK and Ireland, including the commercial and industrial sector, education sector, conservation sector, domestic sector, agricultural sector and the tourism and hospitality industry. Offering an end-to-end service, the experienced team at Viltra ensure our customers receive a premium service and a robust solution to their wastewater management requirements.

To make an enquiry or to book a site visit by our expert engineers who will find a solution for you, please get in touch with Viltra through the contact form provided.

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