Malvern Cube Solar Array

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Project

The Malvern Cube Solar Array

Organisation

Malvern Community Energy Co-operative

Partners

Malvern Youth & Community Trust.  When Worcestershire County Council announced plans to close Malvern’s Youth Centre the Trust was formed. The Trust took over the Youth Centre and renamed it The Malvern Cube.

Summary

Malvern Community Energy Co-operative was founded by Transition Malvern Hills and is a community-owned initiative bringing members of the public opportunities to invest locally in sustainable energy.

This first project was the installation of solar panels on The Malvern Cube, which has become a vibrant community centre that supports and runs an extensive range of activities, events, training and performances in Malvern, all managed by the community.

Aims

  • To provide locally generated power, returns to our investors and provide cheaper electricity to The Malvern Cube.

Challenges

  • To raise sufficient funds through the share offer.
  • Time and expertise to deal with legal processes.

Meeting aims/Overcoming challenges

  • Sufficient funds were raised through the share offer which closed on 9 May 2014.
  • Despite the time taken to complete legal processes, on 5 September 2014 a 30kW solar panel array was installed on the roof of The Malvern Cube, and is now generating electricity.

Results

  • As of 23 March 2015 the total electricity generated was 8278kWh of which 4103kWh has been sold to the Malvern Cube at a reduced rate.
  • There is optimism to increase energy supply and strengthen the viability of the scheme.
  • This project has inspired future projects that will involve installing solar arrays on other buildings around Malvern.

Learning Points

Do not underestimate how long legal processes take, in particular with public bodies.

SWM Comment

We commend the efforts of Malvern Community Energy Co-operative in investing in local energy and the local community.

Contact

Ian Caldwell Treasurer,  or for further details, visit Malvern Community Energy Co-operative’s website.