Offering funding for renewable energy schemes throughout Scotland, Local Energy Scotland (LES) distribute support to both local communities and rural businesses to encourage deployment of projects with community involvement.
With a variety of loans and grants available, LES are able to support your scheme from inception to operation. Eligibility criteria has been compiled by LES to inform whether your business or group would qualify for one of their schemes which include:
- Start-up grants of up to £20,000
- Pre-Planning Loan
- Post-Planning Loan
- Infrastructure and Innovation Fund
- Challenge Fund.
Further information on CARES and the excellent opportunities that they could offer your project is available on the LES website.
VG Consulting have experience in working with LES and are currently in the process of compiling a number of applications for communities and rural businesses throughout the country. With a track record of successful renewable energy applications, VG Consulting are confident that we are able to provide excellent service, advice and support for your Community project.
With community renewables forecast to be the future energy generation opportunity, the Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP) have been charged with managing and distributing the RCEF within England. The fund is available to communities in England that meet the following criteria:
- Represent a rural community of;
o Less than 10,000 residents; or
o More than 10,000 residents, yet is within a local authority area that is classified as ‘predominantly rural’ by the Office of National Statistics.
- Form a legal entity in order to receive public funds
- Demonstrate the support of the wider community.
To qualify for the funds, the project which you are undertaking must be a renewable energy proposal which uses a proven renewable technology and will provide a legacy for the future benefit of the community.
The Fund could offer your Community a grant of up to £20,000 for an initial investigation into the feasibility of a renewable energy scheme. Following a successful investigation, the second stage of funding could offer an unsecured loan of up to £130,000 for a formal planning application to be submitted to your Local Authority for consideration.
Further information on the funding available and the eligibility criteria is available on the WRAP website. If you have any questions or would like to discuss how this could benefit your local community, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us whereby one of our Consultants would be happy to run through the options with you.
Local Energy Service
In early 2016, the Welsh Government launched their Local Energy Service which aims to support social enterprises and SMEs (Small and Medium-sized Enterprises) across Wales to develop their own renewable energy schemes.
The service offers advice, support and funding avenues in various forms. Advice is available from locally based Development Officers who will guide you and your project through the process.
This Government supported service may present an excellent opportunity to you and your community. Further details are available on the Local Energy website. VG Consulting are able to provide you with the technical support needed to compile a thorough and detailed planning application for whatever project you take forward.
Concluding remarks on funding opportunities
These funds provide an excellent opportunity to get local communities involved in renewable energy throughout Great Britain. If this is something that your Community or local business could benefit from, it may be worth an application to Local Energy Scotland, WRAP or Local Energy Service for funding consideration. VG Consulting are here to help and advise throughout the process so get in touch and we’ll be happy to discuss options with you.