If you need help accessing grant funding, or writing applications to help get a community energy project off the ground in London, feel free to get in touch and we will advise you where possible.
A comprehensive list of funding opportunities is available through Community Energy England’s website.
Below are some that may be most relevant for London groups:
Co-operative Group’s Local Community Fund
Local causes that want to make a difference in their local community are being invited to apply for funding from the Co-op Group. Preference is given to projects run by small, local organisations that make a real difference to people in their community. Check your postcode to see if they are still accepting applications in your area here. Deadline for applications is 22nd April 2018.
Weston Anniversary Fund
To celebrate its 60th birthday, the Garfield Weston Foundation is providing capital grants ranging from £30k to £150k to registered charities, CIOs, places of worship and state schools for projects that will make a significant difference to local communities. Deadline for applications is 30th June 2018. More information here.
Community Shares Booster Scheme
Community Businesses can access up to £10,000 to help launch community share offers, and up to £100,00 match funding when the share offer goes live. Find out more and apply here.
Smart Energy GB
Funding for not-for-profit organisations working with those who may face barriers accessing a smart meter, for example individuals with learning disabilities, off-grid customers or social housing tenants. Please see here for more information.
Grants are available to not-for-profit organisations with environmental and community projects that restore derelict land, prevent pollution, provide public amenities or encourage biodiversity and are located within five miles of a qualifying Veolia site in England.
Grants of between £10,000 and £75,000 are available.
Projects costing over £40,000 will be required to have a contributing third party payment of 10%.
The maximum project cost is £250,000.
The next deadline for Stage 1 applications is 31 May (noon) for projects taking place between 24 September 2018 and 8 January 2019.
Not-for-profit organisations with environmental or community-based projects can apply.
To be eligible, applicants must:
- Be constituted.
- Have a bank account.
Projects must be located within five miles of a major Veolia Environmental Services facility. This could be a landfill site, Energy Recovery Facility or Materials Recycling Facility.
Applicants must use the Postcode Checker to check that their project is located within the proximity of a qualifying Veolia site.
From 2016, the Postcode Local Trust, funded from the People’s postcode lottery, will invite applications that enhance lasting benefits by bringing people together to improve local ecology and habitats, encourage bio-diversity and benefit the wider environment.
“Funding Central is the best funding search engine around”
This is a fantastic resource which allows users to personalise their search, save it for later and access new and upcoming deadlines.
The database provides unique access to grants, contracts and social investment opportunities from local, national and international funding sources, all in one place:
Exciting news to follow on from last month; Islington council have announced a new funding opportunity which runs until 31st January 2018 at 5pm; this is designed to help local community groups to develop or deliver energy projects in the borough. This is not limited to solar-only projects and aims to also encourage groups who have little or no experience of community energy.
The grant programme is proposed to cover all costs relating to a project or activity, including:
- core costs (e.g. staff, office costs)
- project costs (e.g. venue hire, project worker)
- project management costs
- capital costs (can support the cost of a renewable installation
We’re hoping that this funding will encourage the formation of new community groups in Islington, so please do share with interested parties, and see here for more information.
Camden Council has launched its Camden Climate Fund which offers:
– A Community Energy Grant for Camden Community Groups of up to £15,000, to install and manage renewable energy systems that generate energy for the benefit of the local community in some form.
–Household Grants of up to £7,500 to support households and landlords install a range of renewable and energy efficiency measures to help reduce bills, improve energy efficiency and cut associated carbon emissions.
– Renewables Grants of up to £1,500 towards: Solar photovoltaic panels (to provide electricity) or Solar thermal system (to provide hot water)
– Energy Efficiency Grants of up to £7,500 for one or a combination of insulation, boiler and window replacements.
The first round of this funding has already passed. The next round of funding from the LCEF will be announced in due course.
Please feel free to adapt the following funding template for your application:
The Mayor of London launched his ‘London Community Energy Fund (LCEF) on 13th Oct 2017, offering grants of up to £15,000 for “work required to get a community energy project ‘investor ready’, that means ready to be financed.” The first round of funding has passed. The GLA are now looking to launch a second round of funding, in 2018.
Full details, including the assessment criteria are in the LCEF Prospectus at: lcef_prospectus_2017_oct_final
Key Dates (first round):24 November 2017 at 5pm – Deadline for submission to GLAEarly December – Assessment of ApplicationsMid December – Successful applicants informedLate December – Funding available to successful applicants (half upfront and half when funded activities complete)12 January 2018 – Deadline for return of signed funding agreementsJanuary to 30 April 2018 – Projects undertaken ie “all project development work needed to get a community energy project “investor ready” (ready to be financed before moving to installation phase) will be undertaken by this deadline.”30 April 2018 onward – Funding ClaimedSummer 2018 – projects that can be completed by Summer 2018 will be prioritised.December 2018 – Projects installations must aim to be finished by then
Other key points
- For larger and aggregated renewable energy projects the Mayor has established the Decentralised Energy Enabling Project (DEEP) up to September 2019.
- looking for: efficient use of the funding, such as leveraging in other funds, joint procurement opportunities for services, partnerships, and working with others to maximise efficiencies and share knowledge
- looking for: benefits for local people
- looking to improve local resilience (eg energy storage)
Eligible project feasibility and scoping activities
- technical feasibility assessment (for example structural surveys, assessing the feasibility of grid connection)
- stakeholder consultation
- assessment of planning issues
- getting permissions from the site landowner if necessary
- support to complete applications for permits, licences and consent
- financial viability or business case assessments
- legal advice and registration fees related to the proposed project; project management costs; and other costs associated with the above
- It cannot be used to buy or install equipment
The Big Energy Saving Network application process was a £1.7 million programme supporting third sector organisations and community groups deliver help and advice to vulnerable consumers.
Applications for funding from the Big Energy Savings Network 2017 to 2018, closed on Friday 27 October 2017. Delivery of outreach by successful applicants will begin in November 2017 and run through to March 2018.
Islington is offering local Community Groups the chance to apply for money: “Funding will be available to develop local community energy projects, such as solar panels on a community building or improving energy literacy in a neighbourhood.” Islington is also promoting:
The National Grid Community Grant Programme offers grants of up to £20,000 and funds ‘Initiatives such as renewable energy or conservation projects that have a direct and positive environmental impact’ as well as ‘Activities that promote or support health and wellbeing in the local community, for example addressing fuel poverty’.
THE ‘LESS CO2’ FREE ENERGY EFFICIENCY PROGRAMME FOR SCHOOLS
Sponsored by Ashden Awards and the Bank of America Merrill Lynch, this programme is free to any UK school, regardless if council run, an academy or independent. It enables schools to work together and learn from each other through a series of half day workshops. For more see LESS CO2 Leaflet 2017-18