3rd Share Offer update – 500kW in progress

Progress is well underway towards installing our next 700kw of solar PV, we are expecting to have 500kW installed by the end of March. Works are currently underway at Wey Valley School, Blandford School, All Saints in Weymouth, Blandford Community Hospital, Bridport Hospital and Alderney Hospital.

We are finalising terms and planning with other sites to ensure the remaining 200kW are installed by the end of September.

More about our third share offer here

Dorset Community Energy solar generation in 2019 above target again

DCE is delighted to report another successful 12 months of electricity generation, our existing 16 sites generated 31,500kWh of electricity in 2019, around 7.5% above the amounts predicted in the share offer documents.  This means that average generation is slightly over 1000kWh per kW installed which is particularly positive as not all installations are facing due south. 

Welcome to our October 2019 Newsletter

Welcome to our newsletter, especially if you are one of the 50 new subscribers since our last May newsletter.

We have been busy with our most recent share offer, so thank you if you invested, you can get an update below, and also read about:

  • Community Engagement vacancy for Bridport / Salway Ash Energy Local project
  • Bridport / Salway Ash Energy Local project – connecting local renewable energy producers with consumers 
  • 3rd Share Offer update
  • Climate change presentation at Atlantic Academy Portland 
  • Smart Export Guarantee (SEG) to launch as replacement to Feed-In-Tariff

best wishes from DCE Directors: Derek, Emily, Henry, Pete,Tim, and Tom


Community Engagement vacancy for Bridport / Salway Ash Energy Local project 

Dorset Community Energy (DCE) is excited to have been awarded funding for an Energy Local project which aims to link local providers of renewable electricity with customers, at a reasonable price for both.  We will be recruiting a Community Engagement Coordinator for 10 days of paid work at £20 per hour.

Read more


Bridport / Salway Ash Energy Local project – connecting local renewable energy producers with consumers

If you live in Salway Ash or near a solar farm or wind turbine you may have wondered  whether you could buy the electricity generated and use it in your house.  Currently this isn’t possible with generators forced to sell to the grid for around 5p per unit, and customers to buy from the grid for around 15p per unit.  

Dorset Community Energy is excited to have been awarded a £10,000 development grant from the Power to Change Bright Ideas Fund to pilot a new business model which will enable the supply of local renewable electricity to householders through the existing grid at a mid-price benefitting both householder and owners of local renewable energy plant.

Read more


3rd Share Offer update

A special welcome and thank you to readers who have invested in our 3rd Share Offer.  We are delighted to have reached our target of £445,000 enabling installation of an additional 700kW of solar photovoltaic panels.  The first installation will be 100kW at the Wey Valley Academy. Work will be commenced during the Autumn half-term and completed during Spring half-term. We are also aiming to install a further 3 sites in 2019.

Read more


Climate change presentation at Atlantic Academy Portland

DCE director and secretary Pete West was invited to give a presentation on climate change to 100 Year 7 pupils at the Atlantic Academy Portland, Pete talked about personal actions and solutions to the climate crisis and the importance of improved government policies.  

Read more


Smart Export Guarantee (SEG) to launch as replacement to Feed-In-Tariff

Government to launch Smart Export Guarantee in January 2020 in place of revoked Feed-In-Tariff.

Read more

Dorset Community Energy seeks Community Engagement Co-ordinator for Energy Local project

Dorset Community Energy (DCE) is excited to have been awarded funding for an Energy Local project which aims to link local providers of renewable electricity with customers, at a reasonable price for both, read more here.

Pete West, DCE secretary and director will be managing the Salway Ash/ Bridport local electricity supply pilot project on a voluntary basis.  DCE wish to recruit a Community Engagement Co-ordinator for approximately 10 days of paid work at £20 per hour on a self-employed basis.

The purpose of the role will be to promote the project to householders in the Salway Ash area using marketing materials supplied by Energy Local (which may need to be adapted). If you are interested checik out the Energy Local website for background information.

Essential requirements for the role include experience of community engagement/ marketing or communications and computer literacy (PowerPoint, Word, data management etc). A desirable requirement is an interest in environmental issues/ renewable energy/ the local economy.

In addition the appointee will need to be available for a training day in Bridport with Energy Local from 10:00am- 4:00pm on Wednesday 6th November.

Promotional activities are planned to start in Salway Ash in January and a community engagement plan and promotion materials will need to be developed in Nov / Dec / early January.

Anyone interested in the vacancy should e-mail a CV and covering letter to Pete West pete@dorsetcommunityenergy.org.uk  or phone Pete on 07532 339582 if you would like further information. As this is a relatively small contract applications will be considered as received on a rolling basis.

More about the Salway Ash / Bridport Energy Local project

Dorset Community Energy to start innovative pilot project in January

People who live in Salway Ash may have wondered if they could buy the electricity generated by the solar panels on the roof of the village hall, or the nearby wind turbine.

Currently any unused electricity from the wind turbine or solar panels is sold by the owners to the national grid for approximately 5p/kWh, whereby the grid sells it back to customers for around 15p/kWh. 

Dorset Community Energy is excited to have been awarded a £10,000 development grant from the Power to Change Bright Ideas Fund to pilot a new business model which will enable the supply of local renewable electricity to householders through the existing grid at a mid-price benefitting both householder and owners of local renewable energy plant.  We will be working closely with award-winning consultants Energy Local, who will provide training and set up the metering and billing arrangements between those generating renewable energy and local households who wish to purchase the electricity.   Energy Local will set up the contractual arrangements with a licenced electricity supplier (e.g. Octopus Energy) to ensure households have electricity whether or not the solar panels / wind turbine are generating. 

The video illustrates one such scheme  already operating in Bethesda, N. Wales, which supplies electricity from a 100kW hydro generator to local households at approx. 9p/kWh, so both householders and the generator benefit and money is retained in the local economy.

The DCE project will be developed in 2 stages:

1)  Local renewable electricity supply to householders in the Salway Ash area from the existing 50kW wind turbine owned by local farmer Peter Bailey together with export from the 16kW DCE solar PV installation on Salway Ash village hall.

2) Researching the options for Dorset Community Energy to develop, finance and operate a new ground mounted solar array of approximately 200kW (requiring 2000 m2 of land or half an acre) close to Bridport and directly supplying households in Bridport through the same business model as developed in Salway Ash.

DCE are recruiting for a Community Engagement co-ordinator for this role. Read more

Dorset Community Energy 3rd Share Offer update

Following our successful share offer, the work to implement DCE’s 3rd 700kWp PV portfolio continues. The first installation with be 100kW at the Wey Valley Academy. Work will be commenced during the Autumn half-term and completed during Spring half-term. We are also aiming to install a further 3 sites in 2019.

The remaining sites will be installed next year and we are still expecting completion by the end of March 2020. Some sites have not yet signed the Heads of Terms, once these are signed outstanding shares will be issued. One site has decided not to progress the installation but we are in discussions with several alternative sites. If you invested in the 3rd share offer and have not yet received your share certificate, we will be corresponding with you later in October to provide a more detailed update. Do contact us if you have any questions or concerns.

More information about our 3rd Share Offer

Climate change presentation at Atlantic Academy Portland- Sept 2019

In early September, Pete West, secretary and a director of Dorset Community Energy, was invited to give a climate change presentation to 100 year 7 pupils at the Atlantic Academy, Portland. John Tomblin, an active member of Transition Town Weymouth and Portland, introduced the session with a presentation on climate science, which Pete followed up with a presentation on solutions, including personal actions and the need for much better government policies. It was very encouraging to learn that the 18-hour ‘Caring for the Environment’ module covering science, geography and English was being offered over a period of 6 weeks, starting in the first week of secondary education for these pupils.

Read similar stories on our education page

Smart Export Guarantee to replace Feed-in-Tariff

Since the Feed-In-Tariffs for renewable electricity ended in March 2019, anyone planning to install renewable electricity who did not use all the electricity onsite would have been forced to export the electricity to the grid free of charge effectively subsidising the big power companies. 

Fortunately in January the Smart Export Guarantee (SEG) will be launched.  This will require energy suppliers with more than 150,000 customers to offer a price for any exported electricity.  Octopus Energy have already offered 5.56p/kWh, this means that new installations will be able to benefit in a similar way to the Feed-in-Tariff.

This covers installations generating  up to 5MW and includes solar photovoltaic, hydro, micro CHP, on-shore wind and anaerobic digestion. 

Read more

Dorset Community Energy 3rd Share Offer now closed

Dear DCE Members and Newsletter Subscribers

Dorset Community Energy’s 3rd share offer closed on the 31st July 2019 having met its target of £445,000 within the offer period.

At the six-week mark of the share offer, we had raised £250k but the remaining £200k surged in in the last two-weeks. In fact, we were oversubscribed.

Many thanks to all those who choose to invest in the share offer and apologies to those who got there too late. With a 40% grant support from the Low Carbon Dorset Fund the share offer will allow us to install 700kW of solar panels on schools and hospitals.

There is a possibility the share offer may re-open later in 2019 or early 2020, but this would be dependent on identifying new sites and a further successful grant application.

Unless you have already done so, all investors in the share offer will receive further information from us within the next week.  If you have any questions with regards to your application, then don’t hesitate to contact us at info@dorsetcommunityenergy.org.uk

The work on implementing the 3rd share offer installations is underway with the first step being the signing of fully binding legal agreements with each site. So far Wey Valley School have signed and we are now working with Dorset Healthcare to finalise their four sites as well as Blandford School. We aim to have all the installations operational by the 1st of April 2020 when interest will start to accrue on the shares.

This newsletter has been sent to DCE Members from our 1st and 2nd Share Offers and to subscribers to our newsletter.  It was created specifically to promote our 3rd Share Offer and will now be deleted.  To ensure that you stay on our mailing list for ongoing newsletters and any re-opening of this Share Offer or subsequent Share Offers, ensure that you are subscribed to our mailing list at the following link.  Subscribe to DCE newsletter here.

Sincere thanks for your interest in supporting Dorset Community Energy.

DCE Directors: 

Tim, Pete, Henry, Derek, Tom, Emily

Dorset Community Energy 3rd Share Offer – NOW CLOSED

The Dorset Community 3rd share offer is now closed to new applicants as we have reached the target £445,000. If you have applied for shares we will be in touch soon.

If you wished to purchase shares in this share offer but have been unable to do so please e mail info@dorsetcommunityenergy.org.uk and we will add your contact details to a priority list for notification of future share offers. There is a possibility the share offer may re-open later in 2019 or early 2020, but this is dependent on identifying new sites and a further successful grant application


Read more about our share offer here.