14 Midlands projects secure funding through Community Energy Fund

The Midlands Net Zero Hub is supporting 14 community groups to investigate local energy projects through the first round of the Community Energy Fund. The Hub is managing the fund in the Midlands on behalf of the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero.

Through the fund, community groups can apply for up to £140,000 for Stage 1 and Stage 2 grants. Stage 1 grants are for feasibility studies to establish the technical and financial viability of a project, while Stage 2 grants are for a more detailed investigation, planning applications, and development of business cases.

The funding will help kickstart community-owned clean energy projects such as small-scale wind farms, rooftop solar partnerships, battery storage, heat networks, and more.

The following community groups in the Midlands have received funding for their projects:

  • Birmingham and Solihull RFC (stage 2)
  • Bonsall Community Energy (stage 1)
  • Brassington Community CiC (stage 2)
  • Claverdon Parish Council (stage 1)
  • Crowle Parish (stage 1)
  • Derbyshire Dales Community Energy Ltd (stage 1)
  • Green Fox Solar for Schools (stage 1)
  • Grimsby Community Energy Ltd (stage 1)
  • Retrofit Balsall Heath x Balsall Heath Is Our Planet partnership (stage 1)
  • Sheriffhales Community Energy Ltd (stage 1)
  • Shropshire and Telford Community Energy (stage 2)
  • Sustainable Hockerton Limited (stage 1)
  • Transition Bewdley (stage 1)
  • Wilsford Community Land Trust Ltd (stage 2)

The Midlands Net Zero Hub will now work with the community groups to develop their ideas into investable projects.

Michael Gallagher, Head of Midlands Net Zero Hub, said: “Community energy projects bring a wealth of benefits to local areas, so we’re delighted to be supporting these 14 groups through the first round of the Community Energy Fund. Community energy is vital to achieving our net zero ambitions in the Midlands. Community Energy England estimates that the community energy sector could contribute up to 5,270 MW, power 2.2 million homes, support 8,700 jobs, and add £1.8 billion to the economy each year. We are now accepting applications for the second round of the fund, so would like to encourage communities to get in touch with our team and apply.”

Feeling inspired for your own community energy project? The second round of the Community Energy Fund is currently open. The Midlands Net Zero Hub is accepting applications until 8th November 2024. Funding is allocated quarterly, so find out more and apply now.

Community groups who would like to find out more about the fund are invited to two webinars being hosted by the Midlands Net Zero Hub on 7th and 9th May 2024. Reserve your spot now.

If your community group is not in the Midlands region, you can apply through your Local Net Zero Hub: Greater South East Net Zero HubSouth West Net Zero HubNorth East and Yorkshire Net Zero Hub, or North West Net Zero Hub.