Governance

We are an open and transparent organisation. On this page you can find key documents relating to our structure, governance, finances, funding and project performance.

Resources

Our Structure

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”.

The founding principles and ethos of the business are protected with an asset lock. Which ensures that our assets can never be cashed in by, or transferred to, private individuals or commercial interests without fair return, except where repaying share capital to members. While trading, assets must be used for community benefit and in the event of the Society being wound up, any proceeds would be used to repay creditors and then share capital to shareholders at up to a maximum of £1 per share. Any surplus above this amount would be gifted to another society or charity with an asset lock with similar objectives.

Key features of the BWCE Community Benefit Society:

  • Membership of BWCE is based on shareholding which is open to anyone aged 16 or over who supports the aims of the Society.
  • Shares are valued at £1 each. Membership is secured through a minimum shareholding of £100. The maximum shareholding is £100,000 per member.
  • We plan to pay our members interest on their shares. This is not a distribution of profits but is regarded by the Financial Conduct Authority (our registering body) as a cost on the business.
  • BWCE is run democratically. Members have one vote regardless of the number of shares they own. One Member – One Vote.
  • All shares issued by the Society have equal member rights but are eligible for different rates of interest as specified in the conditions outlined in the relevant share offer document or subsequent interest rate policy approved by members.
  • Members are invited to participate in the running of the Society, for example by attending general meetings, or standing for election to the Board, and to engage with the work of the organisation. See here for information on current boards members.
  • Membership is governed by our Rules which you can see here.
  • We are registered with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Our registration number is 30960R.

Solar Roof Spotting

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