Community Alliance Trust – takes over the White House

The Minister

The Minister

The Food....

The Food….

“It is a proud day for the community” said a spokesperson for the Community Alliance Trust “we are delighted to invite them back into the building and to begin this new phase as a resource to bring people together creating employment and opportunities for local people.”

“We are creating jobs – five so far with scope for more as we develop the programme. Initially we will be providing a quality healthy eating café and function space for everything from small conferences to funerals. It has taken a couple of years to bring the vision to reality and there were a few moments when we weren’t sure it would happen”

The B-listed building originally designed by William Innes Thomson was opened as a road house in 1936 – a cross between a pub and a hotel where people went to play billiards, take tea or have a drink. The building had fallen into decline until it was bought by PARC (the local regeneration company) in 2007. Funds from the Scottish Government’s Town Centre Regeneration Fund and Historic Scotland enabled a £2m restoration of the building.

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We Are Open

The Green House Thrift Shop

Opened last Wednesday the 18th July. The hours are Monday to Friday 10  till 4. Please come in and have a look around, hopefully we will have something you’ll like.

Donations of clothing, books, bric a brac etc. always needed.

Contact us; 0131 656 9163

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Coming Soon….The Green House Thrift Shop!

The Green House Thrift Shop

is now open Monday to Friday 10am to 4pm. we hope you will drop in and have a browse.                                     

We need volunteers and donations of clothes, books, etc.

You can contact us at;

0131 656 9163

facebook Green House Thrift Shop

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Green House newsletter March 2012

The Green House project is closing its doors for now. It was funded by the Climate Challenge Fund between April 2011 and March 2012 and was the Community Alliance Trust’s first major project.  It was a great success – we’ve made a difference to hundreds of people in the community. These are some of our achievements over the last year…

We’ve helped 551 people to save energy and money, and to do their bit for the environment.


  • 82 people using their heating and water-heating systems more effectively
  • 75 people getting started with recycling
  • 56 people wasting less food
  • 34 people driving more efficiently
  • 257 people stopped leaving appliances on standby, by using a TV or PC powerdown
  • 34 people getting loft insulation or a top-up
  • 20 people getting cavity wall insulation

Our feedback questionnaires say that people have managed to achieve an impressive 72% of the actions they said they would do!

These are just some of the comments from people we worked with

“The shower timer is just great, I use the advice given by the use it as a game for the kids who can take the shortest shower with a wee treat at the end.”

“I got my recycling boxes thank you, they are really easy to use”

“I waste less food now, I didn’t realise how much I threw away”

That’s not all…

We organised training on growing your own veggies (pictured), and on fuel efficient driving.

planting on allotment courses

We helped 44 people get free appliances –  from fridges to microwaves – from Scottish & Southern Energy.

We commissioned a feasibility study for a local thrift shop for Craigmillar, which has led to the development of a business plan. Community Alliance Trust are hoping to move the plans for a Thrift shop forward this year.

If you would like to find out more about what we’ve done, please see our Final Report here.

What next?

Community Alliance Trust now want to build on the success of the Green House and will be seeking funding to continue the project.

Plans for the White House are progressing and we hope to open it as a community hub and café during 2012. Plans are also being developed for a Thrift shop – an idea which proved popular in the feasibility study we carried out this year.

We also want to develop the membership of the Trust – membership is open to people living in the Greater Craigmillar area (Craigmillar Community Council area) and enables you to support the work of the Trust and to take part in the further regeneration of Craigmillar. To join the Community Alliance Trust or for more information please contact or call 0131 657 0500.

Useful Contacts

Anyone can get free independent advice on how to save energy from the Energy Saving Scotland advice centre. Call 0800 512 012 (or 0300 456 2655 from mobile phones), or text ‘warm’ to 81025 for a call-back. Or see

For independent information on changing energy suppliers or tariffs, we use

We have found energy monitors to be a great tool for helping people to take control of their electricity bills, with typical savings of 5-15%. Some energy suppliers will give customers a free energy monitor – simply phone them and ask. Alternatively, the library has energy monitors to lend out.

Thank you…

A Big Thank You to all those who have helped and supported us, especially the people of Craigmillar and everyone who took part in the project.


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Save 15% on your car fuel costs!

Image of carDid you know that by driving your car in a more fuel-efficient way you can save up to 15% on your fuel costs? That’s almost two months’ worth of fuel in a year.

We are running free fuel efficient driver training sessions on Friday 24th February and Saturday 25th February. Each session is 50 minutes and takes place in the trainer’s car, starting and ending at the Green House shop. Times are available through each day between 9am and 4pm. Spaces are limited, so book now to avoid missing out!
How to book? Sessions are run by the Energy Saving Scotland advice centre. Call them Freephone on 0800 512 012 – be sure to let them know it’s a Green House booking, which means your place will be free.

Alternatively you can book through us – call (0131 656 9163 or 07874 678052), email (greenhouse[at] or pop into the Green House Advice Shop, 64 Niddrie Mains Road Edinburgh.

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Recycling for flats

Recycling bagAre you living in a flat and would like to recycle but don’t have much space?

Instead of the usual red and blue boxes, the Council also offer a blue hessian bag with handles, especially for people with limited storage space. Your recycling will be collected from the kerbside as usual. Simply call City of Edinburgh Council on 0131 529 3030 to order your hessian bag.

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Don’t miss out on the FREE Insulation Offer

Are you an owner-occupier or private renter? You may be eligible for FREE cavity wall insulation, loft insulation or to get your loft insulation topped up to the recommended depth of 27cm (11”).

There’s no catch – act now to make your home cosier and cheaper to heat this winter! Call the Energy Saving Trust free on 0800 512 012 to find out more or book a free no-obligation survey. Or to talk the offer over with a local advisor, pop into the Green House advice shop or call us to book a Green House home energy advice visit.

This offer is open to 1,100 addresses within the greater Craigmillar area, and 18,000 homes in South Edinburgh. Call 0800 512 012 or pop into the Green House advice shop to find out if your home is eligible.

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Green House advice shop

The Green House advice shop helps people to save money and the environment. We can help you get your heating and electricity bills under control, get started recycling – and much more. Pop in for a chat and a cuppa to find out more, or call us to book a Green House visit to your home – one of our friendly advisors will come round and help you identify how to save money and do your bit for the environment.

The Green House Advice Shop is at 64 Niddrie Mains Road, Edinburgh, EH16 4BG.  Call us on 07874 678052 or 0131 656 9163, or email greenhouse[at]

Opening hours

  • Monday 9-1
  • Tuesday 9-1
  • Wednesday 9-1
  • Thursday 9-1
  • Last Saturday of each month (Jan 28th, Feb 25th) 9-1
  • or call to make an appointment
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Green House advice shop holiday opening hours

We’re closing over the Christmas period here at the Green House – our last day of opening is the 21st December.

We’ll re-open on 5th December, and will be in touch in the New Year about our planned events and activities for 2012, but in the meantime we wish you all a warm, merry and green Christmas!

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A new thrift/charity shop for Craigmillar?

The Green House team are exploring the idea of setting up a charity/thrift shop which would enable recycling of goods as well as providing a source of affordable items e.g. clothes, household items, bric a brac etc to our community.

We are keen to hear the views of people who live and work in the area on this idea and whether they will use it. Please can we ask you to take a few minutes to click on the link below and tell us your views?

All completed entries will be entered in a prize draw for £25 worth of Fort Kinnaird vouchers.

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