Crown Estates and an unsustainable contact

Whenever I see a significant use of the Renewables Map, especially by an organisation that presents itself as supporting interesting projects, its time to make contact.

I saw:   no need to follow the links as they have taken the page down, but basically offering funding for suitable projects. Anyway, as Crown Estates were a major user of Renewables Map, it seemed appropriate to make contact.

So, an email last year, No reply, then followed up by:

Sent: Friday, April 17, 2015 8:04 AM
To: Enquiries
Subject: Re: Re “Working with us”

Dear Sir

I wrote to Crown Estates almost a year ago.  I was surprised to not even get an acknowledgement.

My last email described the heavy use of renewables map, clearly by Crown Estates staff, I am trying to keep this a freely available resource but as an individual you must appreciate that is not easy. Galling when the major users are multinationals

See your own use

I would be grateful if this could be passed on to the correct department



On 2 June 2014 at 14:48, Simon   wrote:

Dear Sir


I am making contact with regard to the community projects that you support and whether my particular project might be eligible.

I am the creator and maintainer of A resource that documents all renewable energy projects in the UK. I started this project back in 2008 and more recently it has grown out of all proportion to what it was and what can be maintained as a sustainable free resource by an individual. (Google adsense adverts generate about £15 a month )

The Renewables Map

It is easily the most comprehensive database / map showing renewable energy projects with a capacity of 1MW and over.

It is unique in showing the correct locations for projects, other resources [are either geographically limited (ie Cornwall only) or show the location based on the postcode. It is the only resource also showing precise individual turbine locations, [including] make and model, spec and elevation, many on Crown Estate land. So far almost 5,000 active turbines and another 1000 under construction and 1,200 proposed.

I monitor access to the resource and I note that Crown Estates staff are regular users.


It is a similar picture for all the energy companies, universities and schools, construction companies, local authorities and government departments from the FCO through to AEA Technology they are all regular users, along  Along with up to 7,000 other visitors each month through ISPs.

I would be grateful if you could consider this resource for funding, it certainly refers to your property and resources on it and is currently used by you. Would you consider Funding either through sponsorship or a grant or, preferably, with an element where the data can more directly support Crown Estates, I’ve got lots of ideas.

The first thing that comes to mind is a Crown Estates branded “Renewable energy map”  showing just those projects tagged as being on Crown Estates land. This would draw on the existing database and any relevant additional data.

If the above or an alternative is of interest, I would be happy to provide a more formal project proposal.

I have read the details on your website with regard to “Working with us” and the various terms of reference and this project would appear to fit in very well with your current ethic [??]

best wishes

So, finally a response.  Thanks Crown Estates, far bigger users don’t bother with responding, then simply carry on using a resource that they seem to increasingly rely on.

Anyway, without giving names and email addresses and the actual text of the email as it has a standard disclaimer about being confidential and only for the recipient etc. The gist was   NO.  But I got a response! Which deserved a polite reply.

Hi Martin

Thanks for your response.

I had checked again the use of Renewables Map by Crown Estates and see that the system had anyway switched off access automatically due to the very high use. I normally switch most users back on.

A major crane  provider was more blatant, they had employed a staff member to populate their dataset, found Renewables Map and proceeded to  go through my dataset one by one. When their access was stopped they complained, promised to look in to contributing – I have an email saying this – then, when access was restored carried on downloading with no further positive contact, only a further complaint when they were switched off again!

I really want to see use of the system, but it is perverse that the organisations that propose they are sustainable, don’t apply that principle to data.

It is very sad how Major businesses, feel that they have a right to information of this type and formatted in this way without contributing in any way, I note that you didn’t review the extent to which Crown Estates used to use Renewables Map, hence my contact. .

But, thanks again for the response, that was appreciated, bigger users simply don’t reply.



So, can I suggest an alternative approach?

If you are a heavy user of Renewables Map, why not be part of its success, take a sustainable approach? Simply downloading every last bit of data that you can and walking away, well, its going to cost you in terms of time, most likely more than simply approaching me and paying for a download, then you can be part of its success!

Far better to support it a bit more, maybe guide it in a direction that really helps you?