The BWCE Fund awarded Batheaston New Village Hall (BNVN) committee £2797 towards the purchase and installation of solar panels for the new Community Village Hall.

BNVH committee member Peter Fear reports on the progress of the installation and what it means for the hall.

Our original plan was to install 10 solar PV panels on the roof of Batheaston New Village Hall. The BWCE grant has enabled us to double the number of PV panels to 20 which will give us potentially 7.6kwh of free energy.

The installation of photovoltaic panels is part complete with the panels and first fix wiring in place at the end of July. We expect the second fix wiring with and connection of the PV panels to the electricity grid to happen towards the end of September. The Batheaston New Village Hall is scheduled to open in October or November 2021.

The BWCE Fund grant will enable us to reduce the running costs of the Hall, potentially allowing us to provide facilities at a lower rate. The hall is all electric with air source heat pumps supplying the heating and cooling. The opportunity to cover a proportion of our annual costs will deliver a positive financial contribution in the coming years.

The hall will be managed in an environmentally friendly way. We will use a green energy supplier and will develop good recycling facilities and good practices to manage waste. We aim to fundraise for secure storage for cycles and will encourage walking and cycling wherever possible (there is no facility for car parking on site). Once the hall is up and running, there will be opportunities for talks and lectures, some of those focusing on carbon reduction, renewable energy and waste and recycling. BNVH would like to work with BWCE to develop these opportunities.