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Community Centre Installs Solar Panels

The roof of the recently built Elsea Park Community Centre in Bourne, Lincolnshire has had solar panels installed providing benefits such as reducing carbon emissions by as much as six tonnes, saving the Elsea Park Trust almost £500 per annum and providing an annual income of somewhere in the region of £1,500 as a result of the feed in tariff scheme. This makes a total saving of £2,000 – no small sum.

Solar Panels
(image credit: stantontcady)

The forty solar panels were supplied by Eco Building Products that are based in Market Deeping and Lark Energy were responsible for making sure that the planning went smoothly and installing the solar panels. They have a 240-watt rating and are supported by SMA inverters that transfer the energy from the sun into electrical power. However, there is a misconception that solar panels need direct sunlight to work but this is not the case – they only need daylight so will still operate on a cloudy day.

In total, the scheme is expected to produce in excess of 8,000 kWh of electricity per annum enabling the centre to lower its electric bills.

Ian Greenfield who is with Eco Building Products commented that an investment return of anywhere in between ten to fifteen per cent was achievable even though the feed in tariffs had dropped. The reasons for this are due to the fact that the cost of purchasing/installing solar panels has reduced significantly and the solar power industry operates within a very competitive market place. So, whether solar panels are required for either domestic or commercial use they are worthy of serious consideration.

It is anticipated that the Elsea Park Community Centre will utilise in the region of 4/5ths of the generated electricity with the rest being transferred to the National Grid.

This is one of several community solar panel projects in the UK with no doubt many more to be installed in the future.

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