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  • Posted November 6th, 2014

    New share offers in community-owned renewable energy projects around the UK

    New share offers in community-owned renewable energy projects around the UK

    Pomona Solar launched its pioneer share offer during h-Energy festivities on 11th October in Hereford. Pomona’s first scheme is for a 250kW solar PV array that will supply low-cost electricity to small businesses located on the site. A wildflower meadow will be planted around the array, helping to encourage wildlife. Pioneer funds are being sought to cover the project development costs and are expected to attract SEIS tax relief. The main share offer will be run early next year, with the installation expected by midsummer’s day 2015.

    Corwen Electricity Co-operative have just had planning permission granted for a 48kW turbine on a stream just on the outskirts of the town in North Wales. This is a high head site and will use a pelton turbine. There is still some work remaining to finalise negotiations on the leases that will be needed, and to wait for the NRW licence to be determined, but it is hoped to build the turbine next year. A pioneer share offer is currently open to cover the development costs, and the share offer document can be viewed on their website.

    Narberth Energy Limited has just launched a share offer to fund a biomass boiler for the swimming pool in Narberth (Pembrokeshire). If the cost of the boiler can be raised (£130,000) the pool will pass via community asset transfer to a new charity which has been set up make sure that the pool remains open. Narberth Energy Limited, a community benefit society has been set up to install a boiler, funded by community shares, and sell cheaper heat to the pool to help it to cut its running costs. They need to raise £130,000 in shares by the end of October or the pool is likely to close. Members are welcome to buy shares, whether close to Narberth or not. You can find more on their website.

    Wester Derry Wind Co-operative has just received the final planning permission for its substation and the 250 kW turbine is being installed at the moment. The share offer was fully subscribed but we do still have some shares available! How is this possible? A small group of subscribers are keen on supporting new wind co-ops in Scotland in general. Given that there are some more projects in the pipeline more in need of brave early-stage members, they are willing to release part of their (as yet unissued) share allocations which are now available to be taken up by anybody who would like to join this co-op. See their website for share offer document. You can see what a 250kW turbine looks like here.

    We’re proud to be working with Ynni Anafon Energy on their 270kW hydro project in North Wales – unlike the above projects we’re just providing admin support for them and can’t claim any glory but their share offer is in full swing, please do consider joining them. They’ll be the biggest community-owned hydro outside Scotland!

    Other Projects

    We’r working on so many other projects that we can’t possibly list them all – here are some of those that have imminent share offers or important news:

    A new Solar PV Community Benefit Society is about to be launched in Cannock. This is exciting as it is the first of its kind, a community share offer that will put solar panels on council house roofs. The group, Chase Community Solar, have worked closely with Cannock Chase Council to come up with the project, and have identified 300+ bungalows that could be fitted with panels. The share offer is going to be launched on 4th November. The number of roofs installed will depend on the total raised in shares, with a minimum of 150 roofs requiring share capital of about £400,000. The more that is raised, the more roofs can be fitted. The projected return on shares is 7% IRR with all surplus above this being put into a community fund. The shares are expected to be eligible for EIS tax relief. There is more information on their website

    Ludlow Hydro has now come to planning – see here for the link and please do support the application – comments open today so you could be the first!

    Leominster Sunrise is very pleased to announce that it has reached its target for the share offer and this is now closed. A date for the switch on is now awaited, as the hand-over of the school to the council has been delayed for the second time. You are invited to join the ‘Sunshine Cycle Ride’ on 19th November, 10-1pm (part of h-energy), which will include a visit and talk about Sunrise’s installation at the school, a visit to the existing Leominster Solar installation at Bridge Street and a tour of the biomass plant at Yarpole Village Shop, finishing with tea and cake.

    We’re working with other community solar projects in Herefordshire to put forward a vision for community-owned solar in Herefordshire – see here.

    We’re also working with Holmfirth Transition Town who have planning permission for a 400kW turbine and will be launching a pioneer share offer shortly – watch this space.

    All the best to all of you from all of us at Sharenergy.

    The views expressed in our blog are those of the author and not necessarily lowimpact.org's


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