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December 2019 Update

Updated: Feb 4

A good year for energy generation and re-financing

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As 2019 comes to a close, we look back at a successful year for Heart of England Community Energy. We exceeded generation targets despite low sunshine in the normally good month of June. Across Heart of England Community Energy's solar sites, we generated around 15,200 MWh in the year to December 2019. This exceeded long-term average projections by 695 MWh.


In September we completed a 9 month-long process to replace the short-term loans from Close Brothers with new long-term lower cost loans from Triodos Bank UK. Social and Sustainable Capital have also extended their loans and reduced the interest rate at which they lend to us. The £16.3 million refinancing has significantly reduced our annual interest costs. A further community bond offer will follow next year. Read More about the refinancing here


(you can also download this newsletter as a pdf here)



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We’ve had some data discrepancies with one the pyranometers (light meters), so HECE’s Chair John Stott got on-site with his sextant to work out if it is something to do with winter shading from that tree.


Supporting people in fuel poverty

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As winter settles in, a recent statistic from National Energy Action points out that on average 11,400 people die in the UK every winter as a result of an unsuitably heated home. Heart of England Community Energy continues to provide funding to Warsickshire-based energy advice charity Act on Energy . Act on Energy provides impartial advice on energy conservation, as well as providing information on grants available for improving the energy performance of homes.


HECE attends first ever Stratford Town eco market

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In late November, Heart of England Community Energy was represented at an eco market run by one of our investors, namely the Stratford Town Trust whom we also partner to fund Act on Energy in their fuel poverty alleviation work. Chairman John Stott manned a full size solar panel with a control box which allowed live demonstration of the panel’s power curve. The panel attracted visitors and provided opportunities to tell people about Heart of England Community Energy.


On 29th November, FOUNDATION House which is owned by the Town Trust, welcomed the local community to its first ever eco market. Twenty stalls offering environmentally friendly products attended, enabling people to swap their usual shopping basket contents for more sustainable and ethical alternatives.


Stalls included environmentally friendly soap, make up, cleaning products, reusable nappies and delicious vegan cakes. Also present were local campaign groups including Friends of the Earth and Extinction Rebellion.


Fran Donnelly, Community Hub Manager said: “We are so pleased with the success of the eco market. It’s a great way for people to try out products that have less impact on the environment and support local businesses too. The response has been really positive and as a result, we plan to hold eco markets regularly in 2020.”


In May, bondholders were paid 5% interest plus the 1% first year bonus for early investors. Shareholders were paid 6% interest in July.


The June AGM minutes and presentations are available on the Resources page of our website.


Performance

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Across Heart of England Community Energy's solar sites, we generated around 15.2 GWh in the year to the end of November 2019. This exceeded projections by 695 MWh. This generation figure amounts to the equivalent of the electricity used by about 3,800 homes and was achieved despite June being less sunny than expected.


Change of address or bank details?

If you have recently moved or need to update contact or bank details then you can do this via the Ethex Registry Portal. Simply log in, using your email address and password and click the grey pencil icon next to your Heart of England investment on the Main dashboard. From here you can amend your contact information, home address and bank account details for future repayments.

If you have any questions or have any trouble using the portal then you can email Ethex at registry@ethex.org.uk (mailto:registry@ethex.org.uk) , call them on 01865 403304 or write to them at The Old Music Hall, 106-108 Cowley Road, Oxford, OX4 1JE, UK.

Copyright © 2019 Heart of England Community Energy

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Cornwall Business Park West

Scorrier

TR16 5EZ

01209 705 423

info@hecommunityenergy.org

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