Southill Solar update - bring on the build!

  • Southill Solar reaches financial close

  • Contracts signed

  • Work to begin mid-September

With your help, we've gone from this:

...to this...

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...to this!

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Bring on the build!

Bring Your Brolly Day was a game changer for Southill Solar - it turned the planning authority into supporters of our project, and after our fantastic equity raise we are now at the stage where the build will shortly be underway.

We reached financial close with the banks earlier today after an exhaustive and exhausting 6 weeks. Here's what you need to know in a nutshell:

  • Build to start w/c 19th September 
  • Commissioning of the site early November
  • Share certificates to be issued soon (dates tbc)

We would like to thank all our supporters, all of you investors, for your enthusiasm and your encouragement. Despite all of our efforts this project would just not have happened without you. It is now your project and we will do everything we can to make this a success and a project that you can be proud of.

Further updates will follow as Southill Solar progresses, so watch this space for information and images as the construction gets underway.

Southill Solar is picking up pace!

A section of the Southill Solar site - we look forward to seeing the wildflower meadow and these poppies year after year while Southill Solar is on site.

A section of the Southill Solar site - we look forward to seeing the wildflower meadow and these poppies year after year while Southill Solar is on site.

All the final pieces are coming together as we move from planning a solar farm to building a solar farm.

The finance is now secured. We’ve ordered the solar panels. We’re holding the first SCE members’ meeting on Weds 22 June. And we’ve pencilled in 5 August to start real work on the site – spades in the ground! So...

Final extension of share offer 'til July 4th

To increase the level of community ownership we are seeking further investments with the ambition of reaching our £1,400,000 equity raise target. Just to remind you we have extended the share offer a final time until financial close on Monday 4th July.

Solar panels, beehives and other tangible assets

SCE has long had a valuable asset in the form of our connection to the electricity grid. Now we’re starting to order other bits of kit – things you can touch, like the 17,500 solar panels which are due to arrive at the end of July.

SCE solar panels are a bit special – they are edged in black, not in silver like normal panels. This is because of our commitment to reducing the visual impact of Southill Solar – black-edged panels reduce the checkerboard effect of a more conventional solar farm.

We’ve also ordered a solar beehive for Southill – and we look forward to starting production of our very own honey.

Finances now secured

The formal offer of a bank loan has come through, offering SCE £2,500,000 million to fund the Southill Solar scheme. This means that SCE is now ready to fund the construction of the Southill Solar Farm using the £2,500,000 bank loan, additional underwriting secured from other partners and our £1,047,550 equity raise to date.

SCE special AGM

Members have been invited to our first members meeting on June 22nd at the Memorial Hall in Charlbury. We look forward to seeing you and to being able to thank you in person for your support, and to raise a glass to the wonderful achievement that all our members have made possible.

The final countdown!

Here’s the timeline:

  • 4 July – ENERGY INDEPENDENCE DAY! Share offer closes
  • PV modules now procured 
  • Procurement of substation by end June 2016 
  • Procurement of everything else (fencing, mounting, piles, CCTV, cables, inverters, distribution boards) - by mid July.
  • Commence on site 05/08 - site layout/ set up
  • Fencing mid to end August
  • Groundworks and Piling commence 16/08 for 3 weeks
  • Framework and PV modules in 25/08
  • Electrical works and cabling early Sept
  • Operational 26/09

Going, going, gone..

It’s your last chance to invest in this offer, join Southill Solar and be part of something great!

Your investment will not only provide you with personal returns, an average of 5% a year, but you will also be creating positive community, environmental and biodiversity impact. You will help secure the future of green renewable energy generation in West Oxfordshire. You’ll add momentum to the energy revolution that is underway, do your bit to combat climate change and reduce carbon emissions. 

It all adds up

Jody believes that the best way to change something big is if everyone does a little bit.

 

Jody and her family are doing their bit by buying shares in Southill Community Energy. In doing that they will help us build Southill Solar. In doing that, they will help create enough green energy to power Charlbury, Fawler and Finstock for 25 years. And, in doing that, they will have saved 60,000 tonnes of carbon emissions. And so, through their small initial investment, they are taking positive action on climate change and energising our community.

We’re changing the way energy works in the UK

And it’s not just us! All around the UK, communities are coming together to find ways to deal with the big energy problems we’re facing as a country. We want to take control, establish a safe and sustainable energy supply, drive down energy prices and lower emissions to fight climate change.

That’s why there are 700,000 small-scale renewable energy generators – just like Southill Solar – in the UK right now.

And this adds up to something very big

Last year, for the first time ever:

  • the UK made more energy from renewables than from coal
  • UK greenhouse gas emissions fell below 500 million tonnes

So a big thank you to Jody – and everyone else who has done just a little bit

Many people have invested £250 in shares for Southill. You’re all making a big, big difference to us.

Investing means you become a member of Southill Community Energy – you get the same voting rights as if you’d invested £100,000, and you’re helping build us into a great community energy group.

You’re also lowering the amount of non-equity finance we need to use – which means that there is more money to go into the community fund pot – which we’ll use for more energy projects.

It’s in your hands

Community energy groups are shaping the energy future of the UK. If you’d like to be part of that and do your little bit, we’d love it if you would join us.

Join us and invest in Southill Community Energy - £250 is all it takes.

Send this onto your friends, family and networks – please spread the word.

And if you’d like to give us a hand (your amazing skills to share, time to deliver leaflets, or anything else) please drop us a line.

Thank you all!

Earth Day - we're in!

Here at Southill Solar we've had so many of you joining in the 'I'm in' campaign and sending us your fantastic pics.

You’ve given us hundreds of different reasons for supporting Southill Solar. To celebrate Earth Day, we thought we’d give a little round-up of some your ‘I’m ins’. These add up to a pretty powerful statement.

We’re so grateful for all your support – thank you for making a difference.

“I want to look my kids in the eye!” – Jenny

Jenny went on to say: "The human impact of climate change around the world worries me most and I believe renewable energy can play a key role combating this. If I'm going to look my kids in the eye when they're older and say I've always cared about this, I need to start putting my money where my mouth is more often!"

“The return of 5%, (10 times the Bank of England base rate!) is not to be sniffed at…” - Robin

 

“It’s a chance to invest in something we can really feel proud of” – Ally

 

“There aren’t many opportunities to make 5% a year AND to make a positive social impact!” – Sue

 

“I want to be part of a zero-carbon future” – Fran

 

“I want to teach my kids the importance of renewable energy” – Kat

 

“It’s the best thing I can do to protect the planet we live on” – Liz

 

“To take action locally that, alongside other similar schemes, has a direct effect globally” – Dan

Are you in?

Join us. Invest in Southill Community Energy and you will help us fund the build of Southill Solar. You will also become a member of SCE, and help us develop and fund other green initiatives locally.