About Bath & West Community Energy

We are a financially sustainable community enterprise operating on the basis of a not-for-profit community energy model.

Are aims are to reduce carbon emissions by:

  • Increasing local renewable generation.
  • Matching this generation to local demand.
  • Funding community projects that also aim to reduce carbon emissions and fuel poverty.
  • Supporting residents to make their homes more energy efficient.

Our vision is for an energy system where local people can buy low-cost, clean energy direct from local energy projects owned and shaped by their communities.

Key Facts

  • We were established in 2010 by members of Transition Bath and Transition Corsham.
  • We build renewable energy generating projects such as rooftop solar schemes and ground mounted solar arrays (solar farms).
  • We are set up as a Community Benefit Society (more details below).
  • We raise funds though local people investing money in us and becoming members.
  • We are a member led organisation on the basis of one member one vote. The majority of our members are local people.
  • We have set up an independent charity – the BWCE Fund – which recycles surplus income from energy generation to local community projects reducing carbon emissions and alleviating fuel poverty.
  • We have run a series of innovation projects to explore how we can better match energy demand and local renewables energy supply
  • In 2023 we embarked on developing new programmes to support local residents to improve the energy efficiency of their homes.
  • We are part of a UK community energy movement of over 400 organisations.

Business Plan 2022-25Annual general meetings

Our Team

Our committed and experienced team has a diverse range of expertise. We hold a firm belief in the importance of community energy and the power it has to address climate change, support local communities and generate economic benefit.

Meet the full team

Area of Benefit

What type of organisation is BWCE?

As a Community Benefit Society, BWCE is radically different from an ordinary company: we must prioritise benefit to the wider community rather than our own members or shareholders. We can pay interest on members’ share capital but we cannot distribute surpluses to members in the form of dividends.

As defined by our Rules, BWCE aims to “carry out any business for the benefit of the community that involves promoting, facilitating, developing and running renewable and low carbon energy and energy efficiency projects in Bath and the surrounding areas”.

Key features of our community benefit societyBWCE rulesStatement of directors earningsShare withdrawal policy

Solar Roof Spotting

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Our Achievements

14.3MW

A total of 14.3 MW of renewable generating capacity installed, enough to match the equivalent annual electricity demand from 5,000 households.

35 renewable projects

29 rooftop solar PV systems (schools and other buildings), 5 ground mounted solar arrays and 1 hydro scheme.

£22.5 Million Raised

Raised a total of £22.5 million  – £12.5 million through community shares and bonds and £10 million through commercial loans.

3,300 tonnes per year

Reduced CO2 by an average of 3,300 tonnes per year.

£380,000 donated

Donated £380,000 to the BWCE Fund and other organisations to support projects reducing carbon emissions and combating fuel poverty.

101 grants

Awarded 101 grants to 63 community organisations through the BWCE Fund since 2015

13.2MW

To date, we have installed a total of 13.2 MW of renewables capacity, generating enough to match the equivalent annual electricity demand from 4,500 households.

21 Roof Solar Systems

Including 21 roof mounted solar PV systems (16 schools and five other community buildings), five ground mounted solar PV systems and one hydro scheme.

£21.2 Million Raised

Raised a total of £21.2 million  – £11.2 million through community shares and bonds and £10 million through commercial loans.

3,000 tones per year

Reduced CO2 by an average of 3,300 tonnes per year.

£300,000 support

Distributed nearly £300,000 to support local community carbon reduction and fuel poverty projects via our independent BWCE Fund.

£850,000 in grants

Secured £850,000 in grant funding to develop new renewables and deliver energy demand management projects.