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Harborough Solar One

What they do

Harborough Solar One is a not-for-profit Community Benefit Society, whose aims are to reduce carbon emissions and fuel bills, especially for those in fuel poverty, throughout Leicestershire.

The story so far

In January 2013 the National Lottery funded "Sustainable Harborough", a project established in Market Harborough with the aim of creating projects to support each other to bring about a more vibrant, inclusive community with lower carbon emissions. A focus on energy (and particularly community owned energy) was always intended to be a key area of work towards the aims of the project. 

One of the early events initiated through Sustainable Harborough was an Energy Forum which brought people together to discuss what they wanted to achieve in and around Market Harborough and how they could start working towards a more sustainable Harborough. From this forum Harborough Energy was created and has started to create local energy projects such as Harborough Solar One.

Harborough Energy

Harborough Energy is a cooperative set up in December 2014 to provide affordable, clean energy to the communities in and around Market Harborough. The local energy projects offer investment opportunities as well as returns for landowners and landlords. 

Harborough Energy will help to give Market Harborough more control over its future energy costs and surety of supply, making it an even better place to live and to:

  • co-ordinate the energy co-ops around Harborough, including Harborough Solar One
  • provide support e.g. through marketing, consultancy services etc.
  • provide membership and benefit which will be limited to those who are energy co-operatives locally, directly involved in the provision of their services

The project

Harborough Solar One's latest project comprises a 150 kW ground-mount photovoltaic solar array located at NBJ London Limited Airfield Park Husbands Bosworth, Leicestershire.

Subject to raising the required capital investment of £149,702 pursuant to this share offer, the Society anticipates that the installation will be operational by the end of September 2018.

Harborough Energy has established the Community Benefit Society (referred to as Harborough Solar One or ‘the Society’) to own the solar PV array at the identified site and will have a 20 year licence with NBJ (the host organisation) under which we will agree to maintain the solar system and provide the host with electricity produced at the site. The host organisation will benefit from reduced electricity cost through a Power Purchase Agreement with the Society.

NBJ specialise in the manufacture of high quality specialist bespoke joinery and cabinetry for residential and commercial projects.

Future Plans

 Harborough Energy aims for Market Harborough, together with its surrounding areas to be an example of locally managed and owned renewable energy.

By 2030 Harborough Energy has the ambition to:

  • install 20MW of community owned energy (equivalent to the electricity needs of Market Harborough)
  • establish a community owned energy supply company providing heat and power to Harborough residents and businesses
  • realise a community benefit fund of £200,000 per year
  • half of the share holders in the Community Energy Programme are Harborough residents
  • 10,000 people benefit from the Community benefit fund
  • create 20 direct jobs and support training in energy related disciplines to 10 local people each year

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