ELECTRICITY bills are a thing of the past at Cheshire’s most innovative village.
Bickerton Village Hall is the first to receive 100% funding from the government to have solar panels installed on its roof.
The 27-tile project will provide the hall annually with 4,100kW of electricity.
The hall’s managing trustee Carole Shadbolt secured the £30,000 needed to complete the initiative.
She said: “We believe we are the first village hall in Cheshire to generate electricity for the National Grid.
“The contractors for the project are a local company and the panels were made locally too.
“If this project could be reproduced in buildings throughout the country, the combined impact would be huge.”
Any electricity produced when the hall is not in use will be exported to green energy supplier, Southern Electric for 28p a unit.
Members of the public will be able to monitor to amount of electricity produced and CO2 being saved on a display panel installed inside the hall.
The solar panels were installed by Tushingham-based installation company The Green Electrician.
Representative Stephen Davies said: “To get 100% funding for this community project has meant that the village hall gets free electricity and an income from the moment we connected the panels.
“Not only are they quietly and discreetly producing green energy, but they are also demonstrating an environmental commitment to the wider community, encouraging others to do the same.”
The funds were supplied by the government’s Low Carbon Buildings Programme, the BiG Lottery’s Community Sustainable Fund and Foundation, a new North West climate fund launched in April 2009, backed by the Northwest Regional Development Agency.