Gawcott Fields Community Solar CIC will be launching a community grant fund in 2017, with the theme for the first year being local sports. We are calling on sports clubs in Buckingham and the surrounding parishes to help shape the fund and get the word out about the solar bond offer, which has recently been re-launched.
About Gawcott Fields Community Solar
Gawcott Fields CIC is a professionally managed Community Interest Company (CIC) that has been established to own and run a community solar farm at Gawcott Fields Farm, between Gawcott and Buckingham. The community solar farm has been generating electricity and income from the sun since June 2016. It is expected to generate over 4 million kWh of renewable electricity each year, equivalent to the annual electricity consumption of around 1,000 homes!
Surplus income generated by the community solar farm (after operating and finance costs and reserves) will be used as to provide funding for community organisations and projects in the local area. It is expected the community surplus will be around £20,000 per year for the first 15 years rising to £50,000 per year for years 16 – 20 (after the bank loan has been paid off) – a total of around £2 million over the 30 year life of the project!
For an initial period of 3 years, half the community surplus will support a community fund to provide grants to local community organisations. The grants will be awarded through an application process open to organisations operating in the local community (Buckingham and the surrounding parishes within 5km of the solar farm), and will have a defined focus each year. For the first year the focus will be local sports. The first community fund awards will be made following the AGM in November 2017.
The other half of the community surplus will be used to fund a program in the local area to help people struggling with their energy bills. This program will be run by Buckingham and Winslow Citizens Advice in collaboration with the Milton Keynes-based energy charity, the National Energy Foundation.
If you are involved in a local sports club, it would be great to hear from you. We will be developing the arrangements for the application criteria and process over the coming months and want to make sure we get it right. To give feedback and be kept informed, please use the link below to respond to our online survey. It should only take a couple of minutes.
Please help get the word out about our Solar bond offer
The Gawcott Fields solar bond offer has raised over £100,000 so far. It gives people and organisations the opportunity to invest in the community solar farm and get involved in generating local energy. Please help us get the word out! Put us in your newsletters, share our Facebook posts with your members, Tweet about us, and if you have somewhere for posters or leaflets, just ask and we’ll post you some.