Hastings & St. Leonards on-line community newspaper
Ore campus

Ore campus

Great news for 1066 Local Energy campaign

After long negotiations and discussions, the directors of Ore Campus of East Sussex College Hastings have said ‘Yes’ to the installation of solar panels on their roof. Fantastic news, marking the first big success of the 1066 Local Energy Campaign. HOT’s Zelly Restorick spoke to Richard Watson of Energise Sussex Coast, one of the partner organisations involved in the project.

“This is such great news for the town. We’re absolutely thrilled,” said Richard. “We’re now going to ask other schools, businesses, faith communities and community organisations to join the campaign.

“And as an additional benefit, students at Ore College will be able to learn about solar installations within their own college, as part of their courses – and the college is expected to save around £5,000pa on its energy bills. With Brighton Energy Co-op we will be installing roughly 250 kilowatts of solar power or 1066 panels. Enough to supply the annual electricity needs of 85 homes.”

CAN partners

CAN partners

“The project has arisen as a result of the Climate Active Neighbourhood (CAN) scheme where Energise Sussex Coast, Optivo and Hastings Borough Council are collaborating to help Ore Valley become a low carbon neighbourhood. In the future, we hope that local residents may be able to join a community energy network – and use any excess solar electricity generated by the college at affordable prices.”

“East Sussex College Hastings is delighted to be part of an exciting and innovative project to deliver renewable energy in Ore Valley,” writes Biram Desai, Chief Financial Officer of the East Sussex College Group. “The project delivers opportunities and benefits to our students, staff, stakeholders and local community, alongside real financial benefits to the College via reduced utility bills.  In as far as local colleges should be an integral part of their local community, and that ultimately they should support our young people for their future lives ahead, this exciting innovation ticks all the boxes! Good luck everyone.”

Buying shares in 1066 Local Energy Campaign

“Anybody interested in buying shares in the 1066 Local Energy Campaign,” continues Richard Watson, “can invest through Brighton Energy Co-op and investors will receive a return of 5%.* Link to 1066 Local Share offer.

* Any investments in community energy are at risk, like all investments, but to date, a 5% return has been provided on all of the 22 community energy projects throughout Sussex. 

£8m sub-station upgrade

“The projects are well timed because UK Power Networks, the local distribution grid network operator are investing £8m to upgrade the sub-station on The Ridge in Hastings. This upgrade will take a year to complete and UK Power Networks are keen to support SMART energy innovation in Ore and across the town to help address energy poverty.

Green Great Britain Week meeting at college

Green Great Britain Week meeting at college

Big green ideas

“The project was discussed as part of the Green Great Britain event at East Sussex College Hastings on 19 October, where 60 students from the college brainstormed their big green ideas with energy experts from across the UK, including Liam O’Sullivan who manages the £250million annual capital delivery programme at UK Power Networks, who said: “We are delighted to be taking part in Green Great Britain Week and partner with community energy organisations to ensure everyone benefits from the energy opportunities that are available.”

“The students presented their ideas to the Right Hon Amber Rudd MP, Peter Chowney, Leader of our Council and Nigel Sinden, Mayor of Hastings as well as to the assembled group.

“The installation of these solar panels will give the students the perfect opportunity to put some of their innovative ideas into practice and learn the skills needed to save the planet and build a sustainable future for their communities. reduce carbon and generate local energy,

“With the support of UK Power Networks, Scotia Gas Networks and other anchor organisations, community businesses such as Energise Sussex Coast and Heart of Hastings believe that the Ore Valley can be a clean green renewable energy beacon for the future.”

Reputable solar suppliers

“Energise Sussex Coast is a community benefit cooperative, offering impartial, independent advice on solar installation. As a good way to point home owners and businesses in the direction of reputable solar suppliers, we have a list of trusted solar companies, who have been through a strict quality criteria desk check by the organisation, Community Energy South. We hope this will help people access trusted suppliers and get the best possible price.”

Possible extension of solar tariffs 

“The race is on for solar, as the feed-in and export tariffs finish at the end of March 2019, but the good news is that community energy organisations can pre-register a building and gain an extra 12 months to completer the installation and still receive the reduced tariffs.”

“If you know of an organisation that might be interested in a free solar feasibility study, please contact us.” (Via

Link to Energise Sussex Coast’s website.

Link to Optivo’s website.

Posted 13:35 Saturday, Nov 24, 2018 In: Energy Wise


Please read our comment guidelines before posting on HOT

  1. Mr Hippolyte Grigg

    What are ‘reduced tariffs’ when the feed -in stops next March?

    Comment by Mr Hippolyte Grigg — Thursday, Nov 29, 2018 @ 09:08

  2. DAR

    Yes, good news for once. I can’t understand why many more public buildings haven’t been doing this for at least the past 20 years.

    Comment by DAR — Monday, Nov 26, 2018 @ 15:21

  3. ken davis

    This really is such good news for Hastings and for the planet. There is enormous resistance to innovation and new new ideas in society generally but we all need more open approaches and more efficient use of our resources if we are to beat global warming. Let us hope now that other owners of large roofs in Hastings such as the Conquest hospital come forward and sign up to reduce their energy bills.

    Comment by ken davis — Monday, Nov 26, 2018 @ 07:37

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