The Centre for Alternative Technology (CAT) has confirmed that plans for new “world class” facilities are moving forward.

The plans are designed to increase the Centre’s environmental training and education capacity to help meet demand as UN scientists deliver a ‘final warning’ on the need for urgent action to tackle the climate emergency.

This will see CAT have “new and upgraded facilities” including teaching spaces, exhibition spaces, additional on-site accommodation, an expanded café, retail spaces, nature trails, walkways, and an enhanced visitor experience.


Eileen Kinsman, Co-CEO at CAT, said: “The new plans — created with support from leading regenerative architecture firm, Haworth Tompkins — are the product of extensive engagement with the local community and CAT’s visitors, students, members and supporters.

“Significant progress has already been achieved, but this next phase — of structural and service design and planning, supported by further consultation — will be where our plans are firmed up and formalised.

“We are confident that the project will encourage more people than ever before to join us in exploring climate solutions. And, as we celebrate our 50th anniversary, what better time to be taking steps to inspiring positive change for a further 50 years?”

The new facilities have been included amongst a shortlist of projects being considered for funding as part of the Mid Wales Growth Deal while attracting funding from charitable trusts, foundations and other supporters.

The plans are expected to see the creation of an additional 48 jobs, which CAT claims will benefit the local economy for many years to come.

CAT have said the new “world class facilities” will help more people and institutions across the UK and beyond to play their part in tackling the climate crisis — through the development of CAT’s train-the-trainer programmes, professional skills courses and bespoke study visits for schools, colleges and universities.

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The facilities will also support the expansion of CAT’s already-successful postgraduate programmes, helping bridge the green skills gap — cited as one of the main barriers to tackling climate change at the scale and speed required. 

Meanwhile, the new visitor experience will provide individuals with the motivation, knowledge, and support to create change at home, work and within wider communities.

The project will be taking a phased approach “to minimise disruption and allow the Centre to remain open to students and visitors throughout its transformation” and create more opportunities for local specialists in sustainable build and design to bid for the work.