Energy projects supported in the Marches with £4m Fund

In 2022, the Marches LEP Board agreed to allocate £4million of funding to support projects that could meet the priorities set out in the Marches Energy Strategy. This represented the first significant investment in energy projects by the LEP and arose in response to a recognition of the increasing importance of investing in energy efficiency and generation to businesses across the region. The Hub’s regional project officer has been supporting the LEP to manage the Fund and ensure that the chosen projects fit the overarching strategy. The Fund is supporting three projects.

Marches Energy Grant (MEG)

The MEG will continue to offer free advice and grants for energy efficiency and renewable energy measures for SMEs and community buildings. Managed by a partnership of local councils and Chambers’ of Commerce, the MEG has been designed to build on the success of previous EU funded schemes, such as the Marches Renewable Energy (MarRE) fund and the Business Energy Efficiency Project (BEEP) grant scheme. To date, these projects have identified potential financial savings of £1.8M, installed over 2MW of renewable energy generation, and saved around 4,500t of CO2e.

Marches Network Monitoring to support Community Decarbonisation

National Grid Electricity Distribution and EA Technology are using the funding to install monitoring equipment into 200 Low Voltage substations within the Marches LEP area. Targeted to focus on areas of community interest and areas prioritised for inward investment, the project will use the data to help locate capacity constraints, and help identify opportunities for providing demand side measures.

Herefordshire Low Carbon Technology Centre

Herefordshire, Ludlow & North Shropshire College are using the fund to convert two farm buildings into a training centre for low carbon and renewable technologies installation at the College’s Holme Lacy Campus. As a Microgeneration Certification Scheme approved centre, training will be provided to the construction industry, developing the skills required to install low-carbon technologies, including retrofit.  The Centre will be amongst the first nationally to offer the new apprenticeship standard in Low Carbon Heating Technician.

Take a look at the before and the proposed interior for the project – it will be quite the transformation!

Find out more about the Marches Energy Fund here.