Who we are

Bath & West Community Energy is governed by an experienced and highly skilled board of directors that includes the Chair, Jane Stephenson, 5 Non-executive directors elected by the membership –  Chris Crookall-Fallon, Peter Harvey, Jolyon Orchard, Pam Penkman, Barney Rhys Jones and BWCE’s Managing Director, Pete Capener. Sonya Bedford and Rupert Atkinson have been co-opted onto the board to provide additional expertise on financial and legal issues.

The board is supported by a growing staff team with further expertise being drawn in when needed.

Elected Member Directors

Chris Crookall-Fallon

Position: .

Chris is presently Head of Climate Action at a district council in Gloucestershire.  Previously he’s worked for a specialist co-operatives and social enterprise business consultancy, run his own renewable energy consultancy business, and for many years worked in Corsham for a specialist climate, energy and sustainability consultancy which he helped to transfer into employee ownership.

Chris has been a long-standing member of Corsham’s transition group and worked on energy projects which contributed to the creation of BWCE.  He was a member-elected director of BWCE early in the Society’s life and in recent years he’s supported a variety of community-owned and social ventures from a community cinema to a food provenance tracking system to a retail co-op conversion.  He’s also provided consultancy services to the Next Generation project run by Power to Change, which BWCE is participating in.

Chris’s first degree was Engineering Design and Appropriate Technology, he also has a Masters degree in Business Administration, and is a Fellow of the RSA.

Chris Crookall-Fallon



Peter Harvey

Position: .

Peter is an environmental lawyer and legal editor with a long-term and practical commitment to mainstreaming community energy and tackling climate change.

Peter helped to set up BWCE back in 2010, particularly the schools solar PV projects. He was an early member/investor and its first Company Secretary from 2010 to 2012 and was also Chair of Trustees of the BWCE Community Fund from 2016 to 2018.

Peter’s work gives him an understanding of the way that the energy sector is changing and the opportunities that throws up for BWCE, particularly to innovate and develop. He has a Law Degree and a Masters in Environmental Law, and is closely involved in the UK Environmental Law Association.

Peter balances his voluntary commitments and day job by spending time with his children, on his allotment, cycling and sea kayaking.

Peter Harvey



Jolyon Orchard

Position: Chair, Development Sub

Jolyon is a co-founder and director of Luminous Energy Ltd, a developer of utility scale solar and energy storage projects. Since 2013 the company has developed numerous solar farms and energy storage projects in the UK and several overseas markets. He participates in all aspects of the development process and has extensive experience of originating and developing greenfield opportunities through to construction.

 Jolyon initiated and formalised a co-development agreement with a community energy company which enabled two of Luminous Energy’s solar farms to be financed via a solar bond portfolio raised from community investors (£6m for a 9.2MW project in Kent and £5.8m for a 10.3MW project in Warwickshire).

 Jolyon holds a Masters of Environment and Sustainability from Monash University in Melbourne.

Jolyon Orchard

Chair, Development Sub


Pam Penkman

Pam began her career in a unit trust company in the City, followed by various administrative posts in major accounting and consultancy firms in London, Frankfurt and Tehran, and five years at Sultan Qaboos University in Oman.  

On returning to the UK, and while working in higher education in Bristol, she qualified as a company secretary. This led to a hugely interesting role as company secretary and ultimately partner at BuroHappold Engineering, a Bath-based international firm of consulting engineers.  There, her particular responsibilities were corporate governance, insurance, legal matters, HR and H&S.

Pam actively supports the Cleveland Pools Trust in its efforts to restore an outdoor Georgian swimming pool in Bath, and also a charity offering warm water swimming for children with special needs.  

Pam has a degree in Geography from Sheffield University.  She and her partner Fred, a civil engineer, have lived in Bath for 30 years.

Pam Penkman


Barney Rhys Jones

Barney is the Asset Management Director for Octopus Renewables’ 1GW Solar portfolio, having spent nearly 14 years in the clean tech sector. He previously worked as Portfolio Director at Oxford Capital, overseeing £350M of investments in solar, anaerobic digestion and grid response.

After graduating with a first class civil engineering degree from Imperial College, London, Barney worked as a field engineer with Schlumberger before joining Bain & Company the global strategy consulting firm. Barney also worked in Telecoms before moving into the renewables sector as with Low Carbon Investors and subsequently as Managing Director and Chief Operating Officer at Good Energy PLC, the UK’s first dedicated 100% renewable electricity supplier.

Barney Rhys Jones


Executive Directors

Pete Capener

Position: Managing Director

Peter is co-founder and Managing Director of Bath & West Community Energy, a director of Community Energy England and a trustee of the Centre for Sustainable Energy. He is chair of the BEIS ministerial Local Energy Contact Group.

Peter has worked in the sustainable energy field and on community energy for nearly 35 years, including many years as Chief Executive of the Centre for Sustainable Energy where he originally started in the mid eighties working with schools and communities. Since resigning from CSE in 2002 due to family illness, Peter has worked as an independent advisor on a range of energy efficiency, renewable energy and fuel poverty projects for various government, private and voluntary sector clients, with a strong focus on community action.

Peter has an MSc in Energy Resource Management.

Pete Capener

Managing Director


Jane Stephenson

Position: Chair

Jane is a founding member of BWCE and has been a Director since 2012 and Executive Chair since 2016. She brings over 35 years’ experience working at a senior level in the environmental sector, from senior roles at Avon Friends of the Earth developing practical recycling projects in the 1980s to being a founder member and Chair of the charity Waste Watch. She developed community led waste reduction initiatives with The Recycling Consortium from the 1990s, through to the development and leadership of Resource Futures as CEO from 2006 to 2016 and is now Chair of the Board. She was a Director of Bristol Green Capital Partnership until 2020. 

She lives in Paulton and plays an active role in a new network Green Action NE Somerset. She is a Quaker and member of Bath Meeting where she plays an active role in the Quaker community. She is an RSA Fellow.

Jane Stephenson



Coopted Directors

Rupert Atkinson

Position: Finance

Rupert is a finance professional and private investor in start-up / scale-up technology companies – many of which are pioneering examples of the positive environmental change being initiated by the private sector.

Rupert had a 30-year career in financial services, as a corporate credit analyst. This experience spans working for a ratings agency (Standard & Poor’s), a long stint in investment banking (at Morgan Stanley), and latterly, a partner and advisor to a private debt fund, lending institutional money to lower mid-market UK and Nordic growth companies.

Rupert graduated from Bradford University in 1985 with a BSc in Geography & Politics, and from the Cass Business School, City, University of London in 1995 with an MBA.

He complements his investing activities with support for a number of university enterprise / entrepreneurship initiatives, including the Launch Lab of City University (Mentor, and member of the Advisory Board) and SETsquared Bath (Mentor).

Rupert Atkinson



Sonya Bedford

Position: Legal

Sonya is a Partner with Stephens Scown solicitors where she heads up the energy team; a Non-Executive Director at Regen; a Director at Exeter Community Energy, Avalon Community Energy and South Dartmoor Community Energy and vice chair of Green Wedmore. Sonya has an MSc in Renewable Energy from the Centre for Alternative Technology.

Sonya’s legal work includes dealing with all aspects of hydro, wind, solar PV, biomass and anaerobic digestion projects from feasibility and grid connections through to construction and funding. Published papers include – green belt and solar development, local supply, solar thermal, asset management for renewables and optimising AD projects.

Her recent experience also includes acting for over 20 community energy groups – from set up/funding/site acquisition to development and subsequent generation.

Sonya was awarded an MBE in 2018 for services to Community Energy.

Sonya Bedford




Nick Bird

Position: Community Outreach & Engagement

Nick is responsible for co-ordinating BWCE’s community outreach and engagement work. He brings a wealth of experience from over 30 years managing community projects and events, promoting community engagement and delivering training.

He has run community engagement projects in Wiltshire, London and Leeds, worked in a community arts centre and, in a voluntary capacity, helped to develop organisations such as Larkhall Festival and Bath Co-operative Alliance. At a national level he has worked with community organisations to help them better engage with Government and local authorities (Urban Forum) and to network and share knowledge (The Quest Trust). 

Nick has extensive experience of delivering training, both as a freelance trainer and as an associate of Neighbourhood Initiatives Foundation, Tenant Participation Advisory Service and London Voluntary Services Council. He has also taught for the College of North East London and the WEA. 

Nick Bird

Community Outreach & Engagement


Alex Jones

Position: Administration & Operations

Alex has a decade of administrative and operations experience, and has managed complex projects for charitable and commercial organisations. Her background is in education, and she has worked in partnership with universities, embassies and cultural organisations to deliver academic courses in Latin America which explore the social impact of the conflict in Colombia and the recent peace process there. As well as a first class history degree from University of Bristol, Alex has also trained in data law, policy and regulation at LSE and is about to start a CASS Business School postgraduate course on fundraising and social investment.

She currently serves as Non-Executive Director at One Housing Group, a G15 Housing Association with a strong social purpose and over 35,000 residents, and as a Trustee at Children Change Colombia, a charity that defends the rights of children through community-led programmes.

For BWCE, Alex will be both providing administrative support to the team as well as helping us strengthen the operational systems and processes needed in a growing organisation.

Alex Jones

Administration & Operations


Alex Lockton

Position: Renewable Energy Project & Supply Chain Development

Alex Lockton has a wide experience of developing new projects including both new renewable energy and low carbon technologies as well as strategic consultancy. He has worked in the renewable energy industry for 14 years, owning and running businesses which design, install and operate all forms of renewable energy including Solar, Wind, Biomass, Heat Pumps.

In the last 5 years Alex ran a local energy business which was responsible for the design and construction of a large number of community energy projects in the south west including some for BWCE. With John Rawlins, Alex has set up the zero carbon consultancy RenewEV.

For BWCE, Alex’s main focus is developing the new Community Solar PV campaign which identifies commercial and public buildings to host community owned solar systems as well as ground mounted solar arrays. In addition to this, he is providing supply chain and technical support to BWCE’s demand side response pilot Flex Community and is keen to develop new projects involving renewable heat, battery storage and electric vehicle charging networks.

Alex Lockton

Renewable Energy Project & Supply Chain Development


Julia O’Connor

Position: Marketing & Communications

Julia is responsible for delivering a programme of communication, marketing and outreach activities for the ReDream project. She brings over 20 years experience of working in Marketing Communications both in the private sector, but more predominantly within charity and not for profit organisations. She has worked for national charities such as RNIB, Penny Brohn Cancer Care, Hft as well as Bath Centre for Psychotherapy and Counselling and Places for People Leisure.

She has a BA Hons in Literary Studies and Post Grad Diploma in Marketing from the Chartered Institute of Marketing. She is passionate about writing and creates engaging content, bringing the work of organisations to life so they can reach and benefit more people.

Julia is married with 2 young children, the family enjoy nature and adventures outdoors. They are currently restoring a formerly unloved Grade 2 listed building back into a family home and looking at ways to make their lives more sustainable.

Julia O’Connor

Marketing & Communications


John Rawlins

Position: Renewable Energy Project Development

John’s first degree was in Aeronautical Engineering, where he was awarded 1st Prize in a cross-discipline renewable energy project by the Royal Academy of Engineering. He has worked for a variety of well known companies, completing training as a Chartered Management Accountant and then an Executive MBA at the University of Bath. More recently he has spent 2 years as the Chief of Staff to the CEO of a FTSE 250 energy retailer.

On becoming a father John has sought to use the skills he has accumulated in a more purposeful way. This has brought John back to his roots as an aeronautical engineer, and a focus on renewables.

John is now a partner with Alex Lockton in their zero carbon consultancy RenewEV. For BWCE John works with Alex assessing new renewable energy project opportunities, carrying out financial analysis and liaising with site and landowners.

John Rawlins

Renewable Energy Project Development


Alison Turnbull

Position: Innovation Project Management

Alison Turnbull is one of BWCE’s main project developers working on a freelance basis. She has worked in the renewable energy industry for 20 years, including at AEA Technology on the UK government’s biomass energy research and development programme and at ESD as a renewable energy consultant.

During the latter part of her career, she worked with Ambient Energy Ltd on the development of small scale biomass projects and more recently on the development of small scale pv community schemes with CoCoEnergy and Frome Renewable Energy Co.

Alison was responsible for the project development on a range of BWCE’s solar PV roof schemes and the project management of BWCE’s first demand management programme, Empower, an Innovate UK funded scheme operating in the Corsham community near Bath . She is currently project managing BWCE’s Flex Community and Solar Streets projects and helping BWCE identify and develop new solar roofs.

Alison Turnbull

Innovation Project Management


Operational Partners

Bright Renewables are a community owned asset manager with 83MW of renewable electricity capacity under management. BWCE are one of Bright Renewables founding members and owners.

Bright Renewables manage BWCE’s renewable energy projects.

RenewEV is a zero carbon consultancy set up by Alex Lockton and John Rawlins, members of BWCE’s team. RenewEV is committed to the development of community energy projects and donates 5% of its profits to BWCE.

RenewEV provides BWCE with renewable energy project development services.

External services provides specialist support services to a number of sectors including the renewable energy sector.

External Services provides BWCE with accounting, payroll and HR support.

Neville Registrars provide share registration services for a wide range of clients.

Neville Registrars manage BWCE’s share register and bond register for all bonds issued in 2016.


Ethex provide an online marketplace for positive investment and specialise in community offers. BWCE has run multiple fundraises through Ethex in the past.

Currently Ethex is managing BWCE’s bond register for all bonds issued in 2017.